Mireia Belmonte

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Mireia Belmonte
Mireia Belmonte Garcia.jpg
Personal information
Full name Mireia Belmonte García
National team  Spain
Born (1990-11-10) 10 November 1990 (age 26)
Badalona, Province of Barcelona, Spain
Height 1.70 m (5 ft 7 in)
Weight 60 kg (132 lb)
Sport
Sport Swimming
Strokes Freestyle, Butterfly, Medley

Mireia Belmonte García (born 10 November 1990) is a Spanish Olympic, world, and European champion swimmer. She is the first female Olympic champion in the history of Spanish swimming and is widely considered to be the greatest Spanish swimmer of all time.

At the Olympic Games in 2016 Rio became Olympic champion in the 200-metre butterfly, and also won the bronze medal in the 400-metre individual medley. She previously participated at the 2008 Beijing Olympic Games, where she debuted at 17 years old, and at 2012 London, where she won two silver medals in the 200-metre butterfly with 2:05.25 and in the 800-metre freestyle with 8:18.76, improving the national record by four seconds.

Biography[edit]

Early years[edit]

Mireia’s parents, José Belmonte (Freila, Granada) and Paqui García (Huelma, Jaén), moved to Catalonia and the family has always lived in the La Salud quarter of Badalona.

She was advised to swim at the age of 5 by her doctor. Club Natación Badalona (in Catalan) was the first swimming club where she started to compete. In 2003, she obtained a scholarship from Federación Catalana de Natación (in Catalan) to train at the Centro de Alto Rendimiento (High Performance Center, CAR) of San Cugat del Vallés. Her coach was Jordi Murio when she was signed by Club Natació L'Hospitalet (in Catalan). After 6 years in this Club, she was signed in the 2007/08 season by Club Natación Sabadell (in Catalan). She continued training in CAR with her new coach Carles Subirana. In 2009 she left the CAR trainings and moved to the Club Natación Sabadell to with Michael Piper and later Fred Vernoux.[1]

Swimming career[edit]

2006 Youth World Championships[edit]

At the 2006 FINA Youth World Championships, she was the Junior World Champion in the 400-metre freestyle and in the 400-metre individual medley, and the Junior European Champion in the 200-metre freestyle and in the 400-metre individual medley.

2007 European SC Championship[edit]

The following year training with Carles Subirana she reached the 2nd place in the 400-metre medley at the 2007 European Short Course Swimming Championships with 4:31.06, just behind the Italian Alessia Filippi. She was also classified to participate at the Beijing 2008 Summer Olympics.[1]

2008 European Championship[edit]

On 21 March 2008, at the 2008 European LC Championships held in Eindhoven, the Netherlands, Belmonte won the women's 200-metre individual medley breaking the European Championships record with the time of 2:11.16. She also reached the 8th place in the 400-metre individual medley. The European Short Course Swimming Championships 2008 took place in Rijeka (Croatia), where she won the gold medal. The previous record was held by the American swimmer Julia Smit, with 4:25.87, since 28 November 2008 in Toronto, Canada.[1]

2011 XII Championship of Spain[edit]

In 2011 she obtained, at the XII Championship of Spain, the best world-wide mark of the year in the 400-metre medley and a new record with 4:24.91. She also reached a record in the 200-metre butterfly with 2:06:25, obtaining the minimum marks for the World Championships in Shanghai at three different distances. Also in 2011 she was at the head in the Holland competition of the 800-metre freestyle, beating the record of Spain with 8:22.78.[1]

2010 FINA World Swimming Championships[edit]

Although the season 2009–2010 was not very good, she recovered her best form and appeared strengthened to 2010 FINA World Swimming Championships, where she achieved a very remarkable performance, winning three gold medals: the 200-metre butterfly, the 200-metre medley and the 400-metre medley and a silver medal in the 800-metre freestyle, in which she was only surpassed by her teammate Érika Villaécija.[1]

2012 Summer Olympics[edit]

In August 2012 Belmonte won two silver medals at the 2012 Summer Olympics in London:[2] one in 200m butterfly and another one in 800m freestyle. She became the first Spanish swimmer to win two Olympic medals.

2012 Summer Olympics Events[1]
Event Time Place Date
400 m Medley 4:35.62 8th 28 July
400 m Freestyle 4:08.23 13th 29 July
200 m Medley 2:11.54 10th 30–31 July
200 m Butterfly 2:05.25 Silver 1 August
4 x 200 m Freestyle 7:54.59 10th 1 August
800 m Freestyle 8:18.76 Silver 3 August

2013 FINA World Cup series[edit]

After four months without training, she was presented as a member of the team of the Universidad Católica San Antonio de Murcia on 21 January, with a federative license for the UCAM Club Natación Fuensanta. Thus, she could combine her studies in Business Management through a blended learning program with her training in Sabadell (Barcelona).

That year, the World Swimming Championship was held in a very special city: it took place in Barcelona. Mireia would compete in 6 events during the 8 days of the competition. On 29 July, she won the bronze medal in the 200-metre medley. On 1 August, she won the silver medal in the 200-metre butterfly. On 4 August, the last day of the championship, she won her second silver medal in the 400-metre medley. On 5 August, she was honored in her birthplace, Badalona, where she was received by hundreds of fans and decorated by the Mayor Xavier García Albiol in an institutional act.

On 10 August, she broke the world record of the 800 in short course, becoming the first woman to get off the 8 minutes. The next day she broke the world record for the 400-metre freestyle in short course with a time of 3:54.52.17 On 29 November, she broke the record again.[1]

2013 European Championship[edit]

On 12 December, at the European Short Course Swimming Championship held in Herning (Denmark), Mireia won the gold medal in the 200-metre butterfly, beating the continental record in 2:01.52.19 The next day, she won another gold medal in the 800-metre freestyle with a time of 8:05.18. She defeated the local heroine Lotte Friis in that final.[1]

2014 FINA World Championships[edit]

Belmonte won four individual gold medals and broke two world records:[3]

2014 World Championship Swimming in Short Course Doha[edit]

On December 3, she won two gold medals in the 200-metre butterfly and in the 400-metre medley. And at the same time she achieved the world record with substantial markdowns, making her the first swimmer to go down in the 2 minutes in the 200-metre butterfly. In both races, of great parallelism, she had to go back to its main rival, the Hungarian Katinka Hosszú, that topped the duels during the majority of the competitions, at times reaching top marks, and who was surpassed twice in the demolisher final developed by Mireia, that managed to maintain the progression of herbeats.[1]

2015 World Swimming Championships in Long Pool Kazán[edit]

In Russia, Mireia was unable to participate because of a chronic shoulder injury (bursitis) that led to months without competing at a high level. Mireia Belmonte said that her goal was to prepare the 2016 Rio Olympic Games well although she had tried to be at the Kazan World Cup until the very last moment.[1]

2016 Summer Olympics[edit]

In Rio 2016 Mireia Belmonte achieved a historic victory for Spain by winning the gold medal in the 200-metre butterfly on 10 August, making a time of 2:04.85, just 3 hundredths of a second ahead of the silver medalist, Australia swimmer Madeline Groves, who finished with the quickest time in the semifinal. She also achieved a bronze medal in the 400-metre medley and was classified for the final of the 800-metre freestyle on 11 August.[4] She was the first Spanish female swimmer to become an Olympic champion.[1]

World Records[edit]

Event Time Date Place
200m butterfly (SC) 1:59.61 3 December 2014 Doha, Qatar
400m freestyle (SC) 3:54.52 11 August 2013 Berlin, Germany
400m medley (SC) 4:18.84 12 August 2017 Eindhoven, Netherlands
800m freestyle (SC) 7:59.34 10 August 2013 Berlin, Germany
1500m freestyle (SC) 15:19.71 12 December 2014 Sabadell, Spain

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k "Mireia Belmonte". Wikipedia, la enciclopedia libre (in Spanish). 10 June 2017. 
  2. ^ Women's 200m Butterfly at london2012.com
  3. ^ "Two Golds for Spanish Swimmer". The New York Times. December 4, 2014. Retrieved 2 August 2016. 
  4. ^ "Olympic swimming results 2016: Spain's Mireia Belmonte wins gold in women's 200m butterfly". SB Nation. 10 August 2016. Retrieved 10 August 2016. 

External links[edit]

Records
Preceded by

Julia Smit
Katinka Hosszú
Katinka Hosszú
Women's 400 metres individual medley
world record holder (short course)

14 December 2008 – 22 November 2009
3 December 2014 – 2 December 2015
12 August 2017 – present
Succeeded by

Kathryn Meaklim
Katinka Hosszú
Incumbent
Preceded by
Camille Muffat
Women's 400 metre freestyle
world record holder (short course)

11 August 2013 – present
Succeeded by
Incumbent
Preceded by
Camille Muffat
Women's 800 metre freestyle
world record holder (short course)

10 August 2013 – present
Succeeded by
Incumbent
Preceded by

Lotte Friis
Lauren Boyle
Women's 1500 metre freestyle
world record holder (short course)

29 November 2013 – 9 August 2014
12 December 2014–present
Succeeded by

Lauren Boyle
Incumbent
Preceded by
Liu Zige
Women's 200 metres butterfly
world record holder (short course)

3 December 2014–present
Succeeded by
Incumbent
Awards
Preceded by
Marina Alabau
Spanish Sportswoman of the Year
2013
Succeeded by
Carolina Marín