(Reuters) – World and Olympic champions Caeleb Dressel and Adam Peaty smashed their own short course world records on the final day of the International Swimming League (ISL) season in Budapest on Sunday.
American Dressel, who last Monday became the first man to swim the 100m Individual Medley in under 50 seconds, sliced a further six tenths off his record of 49.88 with a new best of 49.28.
The 24-year-old, racing for the winning Cali Condors team, has now gone nearly a second faster than anyone else in history with the previous best before him being Russian Vladimir Morozov who set a then-record 50.26 in 2018.
London Roar’s Peaty touched the wall with a time of 55.41 in the 100m breaststroke, beating the record 55.49 the 25-year-old Briton set in the same pool a week ago.
Energy Standard’s Belarusian Ilya Shymanovich finished second, his time equalling Peaty’s previous record.
“It feels like every race is a world championship or an Olympic final, it’s incredible,” said London Roar general manager Rob Woodhouse. “Seeing all these world records is just amazing.”
Dressel, a double Olympic gold medallist in 2016 and winner of seven world championship golds in Budapest in 2017 and a further six in Gwangju in 2019, set two world records on Saturday in the 100m butterfly and 50m freestyle.
Dutch swimmer Kira Toussaint, Peaty’s London Roar team mate, set a women’s 50m backstroke world record of 25.60 on Nov. 14.
Teams, with many of the world’s top swimmers, have been racing behind closed doors in Budapest since Oct. 16 with Energy Standard, Cali Condors, LA Current and London Roar reaching the finals.
The Condors also had Olympic women’s 100m breaststroke champion Lilly King set a U.S. record in the distance with a time of 1:02.50.
With the Tokyo Olympics postponed until 2021, and other competitions cancelled around the world due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the ISL gave more than 300 swimmers a focus and the chance to team up and race again.
Athletes remained in protective ‘bubbles’ with regular tests for the new coronavirus. There were no positive results registered at the event.
“It’s been such a fun time, this whole bubble,” said Dressel. “This is the most fun I’ve ever had swimming in my life. To have that for six weeks is truly special.”
(Reporting by Alan Baldwin in London, editing by Toby Davis and Ken Ferris)