Bovell III golden again in Stockholm
By JONATHAN RAMNANANSINGH Monday, October 15 2012
National swimmer, George Bovell III set yet another national record and lifetime best yesterday when he splashed to victory in the Men’s 50m freestyle event on day two of the FINA/ Arena 2012 Swimming World Cup in Stockholm, Sweden.
Bovell’s golden performance came in an impressive time of 20.82 seconds, 0.52s off the current world record of 20.30s, set by Russia’s Roland Schoeman in 2009. The four-time Olympian swam in lane six and defeated former Olympic gold medallist and eventual runner-up Anthony Ervin of the USA (20.99s). Australian Matthew Targett (21.15s) was third. Rounding off the eight 50m freestyle finishers were Australian Kenneth To (21.47s), Finnish Ari-Pekka Liukkonen (21.53s), Croatian Stefan Nystrand (21.74s), New Zealander Cameron Simpson (21.88s) and Dutch swimmer Jasper Van Mierlo (21.99s) respectively.
In the opening round of heats, the experienced local swimmer contested from lane four in heat six of seven where he clocked the fourth fastest time (21.86s) in all seven contested heats.
It was Bovell’s second gold medal at the World Cup following his victory in the 100m Individual Medley on Saturday.
The former NCAA record holder shared his joy with his Twitter followers yesterday.
The seven-time World Championship finalist tweeted, “Gold in the 50m Freestyle tonight (yesterday) at the FINA World Cup! New lifetime best and national record. 20.82!!”
The TT swimmer was also congratulated by the beaten silver medallist Ervin who tweeted soon after, “Breaking time barriers in Stockholm with a 20.99–and yet, the rivalry with George Bovell is getting red hot!”. The American swimmer also gave credit to Bovell for his own fantastic swim which he says may not have been possible without Bovell leading the way and forcing him to go faster.
“Excellence is never achieved alone. Thank you for that George,” he stated.
Bovell also paid tribute to his American opponent, “We smashed through the 21 (seconds) barrier! This rivalry is getting Red Hot!! Anthony Ervin I couldn’t have done it alone.”
Bovell has been in scintillating form at the World Cups and two weeks ago he recorded two silver medal finishes in the 100m IM and 50m freestyle at the Dubai and Doha legs of the World Cup.
But the Swedish stop proved a sweet change for the local atlete who suddenly turned silver into the elusive gold.
On Saturday, the Olympic bronze medallist also set another new national record and swam a lifetime best when he clocked 51.56s in the IM.
Bovell will continue his 2012 World Cup campaign when the competition continues in Moscow, Russia from October 17-18. Other World Cup stops include Berlin, Germany (October 20-21); Beijing, China (November 2-3); Tokyo, Japan (November 6-7) and Singapore (November 10-11).
At the recently concluded London Olympic Games, Bovell III finished in seventh place in the Men’s 50m freestyle event.