Thomas Ceccon, 21, contributed to Italian swimming history in 2022 thanks in part to his world record and world championship in the 100-meter backstroke this year.
In the previous six years, numerous swimmers had pounded on the door of the men’s 100-meter backstroke world record. Since the last day of the Rio 2016 Olympics, Ryan Murphy’s 51.85 seconds have been the world record. However, many have threatened to break that record, with eight men running in 52.20 or less in the past six years, including three who ran in under 52 seconds.
At the 19th FINA World Championships in Budapest on June 20, 2022, Italy’s Thomas Ceccon ultimately beat the world record with a 51.60. And it was his response a barely cracked smile on the unshaven face of the 21-year-old that appeared satisfied that gained more notoriety than the swim itself.
“The sneer on my face was emphasizing pride and complacency. In a recent interview with FINA, Ceccon said, “I thought I could have done even better.
“I meticulously organized my race preparation, and I was able to maintain a high level of focus. Since I knew it would need a lot of effort, it wasn’t really a surprise.
All three medalists broke 52 seconds, setting a world record set by Ceccon ahead of the two Americans
Murphy (51.97) and 50-meter back world record holder Hunter Armstrong. It was one of the quickest 100-meter backstroke fields ever created (51.98). A somewhat unexpected outcome considering that the Russians Evgeny Rylov and Kliment Kolesnikov, who won the gold and silver medals in the Olympics, were absent from the Championships.
Given that Ceccon had just missed the podium at the Tokyo 2020 Olympics with a fourth-place finish and was the 2019 world juniors champion in the same event, it is difficult to call her performance a breakthrough swim. Ceccon left his first Olympics with two medals in the relays, but the disappointment of coming up short in the individual 100m backstroke inspired him to become the athlete we saw in 2022, winning both a regional title at a European Championship held in Rome and a world championship in Budapest.
FINA Swimming World Cups
Prior to competing in the FINA World Championships the following year, Ceccon will compete in all three of this week’s FINA Swimming World Cup events in Berlin, Toronto, and Indianapolis. Ceccon will make his season debut in the short course meters after a brief two-week vacation following the European Championships in August, where he is looking to post some quick times.
Personally, I find short courses to be both enjoyable and difficult, according to Ceccon. “On the other side, the long course is the serious course due to the World Championships and Olympics.
“I have a 50.2 in the 100-yard backstroke on short course, which is not very excellent. We can definitely get under 50, in my opinion.
Due to his skill in the sprint fly, back, and free, Ceccon will compete in a lot of events throughout the three World Cup stops, including the 100 and 200 IM. Instead of concentrating on just a few events, he finds value in competing in and practicing for numerous competitions.
Alberto Burlina, his trainer, takes him to Verona, where Ceccon “likes having no one in training.” The opportunity to compete so frequently in a sport like swimming, where success is solely determined by who touches first and second, is what excites Ceccon the most about this forthcoming trip. He will see some of the top swimmers in the world over the course of the next three weeks.
After the World Championships, Ceccon remarked, “I always prefer to do a lot of meets and races in preparation to perhaps measure myself with the top swimmers in the world. It is extremely important to me.” It is a challenge to work even harder in the gym and a check on how prepared I am.
He will cap off a hectic 2022 with the Short Course World Championships in Melbourne, Australia, at the end of the year. He competed in Abu Dhabi the previous year and took home four medals, including a bronze in the 100 IM for individuals and three relay medals.
Coleman Stewart of the USA now holds the record in the 100 backstroke with a time of 48.33, but Ceccon isn’t fully focused on his performance at the FINA Swimming World Cup. When swimmers are focused more on using these meets to see where they are in their training than on seeing their totally optimal results, preparation and execution are frequently the analyzed elements.
World records are undoubtedly attainable, but that is not the main goal. Additionally, Ceccon will compete frequently, ideally every day throughout the three visits, in an effort to develop in all possible ways. According to him, the shorter course is more entertaining, and the spectators will experience lots of exhilarating moments if his performance at the FINA Swimming World Cup is any indication of how he performed this summer.
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