Or Sabatier capped the national swimming championships at the Wingate Institute with a new Israeli record in the 50-meter freestyle on Saturday.
Sabatier clocked a time of 22.54 seconds in the fastest event of the meet, improving the previous national record by 14 hundredths of a second on his way to the gold medal in the final day of the championships.
Almog Olshtein finished in second place (22.62s), also bettering the previous best, while Yahav Shahaf, who set the old record last summer, touched the wall third (22.70s).
Sabatier set the only national record in a non-relay swim at the five-day event at Wingate, with most of Israel’s top swimmers using the nationals as their final preparation for the European Championships, which begin in Berlin next Wednesday.
Two-time European bronze medalist, Guy Barnea, proved he is in excellent form with a win in the 50m backstroke. Barnea finished in an impressive time of 25.12s, beating teammate Jonatan Kopelev, who won the gold medal in the event at the Europeans two years ago.
Another of Israel’s finest swimmers, Gal Nevo, completed the individual medley double on Saturday by claiming the gold medal in the 200m IM in 2:03.34 minutes after finishing first in the 400m IM last week.
There were also plenty of impressive performances by the rising stars of Israeli swimming at Wingate.
The 17-year-old Jessica Antiles, who recently moved to Israel from the US, ended the championships with four individual gold medals, winning the 200m IM and 800m freestyle on Saturday after triumphing in the 400m IM and 400m free earlier in the event.
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