Pellegrini's Answer: WR 200 Free 1:55.45
Craig Lord
Thumped into fourth in the 400m free final, the Italian world record holder takes down Laure Manaudou's second world record, in the heats of the 200m free

If you're name was Laure Manaudou, you might be tempted to say "this is personal". First, Federica Pellegrini (ITA) takes the boyfriend (lovely Luca), then takes the 400 free world record, and now the 200m freestyle world record - in 1:55.45.


The splits: 27.81; 57.04; 1:26.53; 1:55.45.

Manaudou, Melbourne 2007: 27.13; 56.24; 1:25.69; 1:55.52.

Little point in any of that, of course, in terms of the Olympic Games if the Italian repeats the pattern of what unfolded in the 400m freestyle final, where Pellegrini swam everyone else's race and played into the hands of Brits Rebecca Adlington and Joanne Jackson and Katie Hoff of the US.


The GDR era sank deeper into history in the 200m heats: the first to get inside Heike Friedrich's 1:57.65 from 1988 was Pang Jiaying (CHN), in 1:57.37, just shy of doping-shamed Lu Bin's Chinese record; and then Sara Isakovic (SLO) took the mark down to 1:55.86.

 Manaudou is not in the 200m race. Last in 4:11 in the 400m, she must surely be wondering how she managed to throw it all away with such aplomb. Coach Philippe Lucas has an answer, no doubt.