GLASGOW, (Reuters) – Adam Peaty’s world 100 metres breaststroke record, set at the European Championships on Saturday, has been amended after problems with the race-timing equipment came to light, officials said yesterday.
The time, revised from 57.00 seconds to 57.10, is still faster than Peaty’s previous record of 57.13 set at the 2016 Rio de Janeiro Olympics, sparing organisers the embarrassment of having to wipe the 23-year-old Briton’s new mark from the record books.
The European Swimming League (LEN) have apologised to Peaty and other affected athletes, a senior LEN official said later on Sunday, adding that he could see no reason why the record would not be ratified by the sport’s governing body FINA.
A second world record set on Saturday, the 50 metres backstroke mark of Russian Kliment Kolesnikov, remains unchanged as it was not one of the nine races that were affected by the equipment problem.
LEN said the starting mechanism had been “incorrectly configured” so that nine of Saturday’s races at the Tollcross International Swimming Centre showed times that were 0.10 seconds too fast.
“During the afternoon competition session on Saturday, the LEN Technical Swimming Committee became aware of a potential problem in relation to the race timing equipment for the first nine races of that session,” a statement from the European governing body said.
“Upon thorough investigation it became apparent that the starting mechanism had been incorrectly configured prior to the start of the session which resulted in all reported times being 0.10s faster due to a configuration delay of 0.10s.
“The LEN Technical Swimming Committee, working with the timing system operators, carried out extensive tests to confirm this system configuration error and have, with the benefit of the necessary technical analysis, revised all recorded times for the first nine races during that session.
“The (committee) confirms that all times recorded during the first three competition sessions and after the first nine races of that session are accurate.”
The affected races were the women’s 800 metres freestyle final, 100m butterfly final and two 100m breaststroke semi-finals and the men’s 100m breaststroke final, 200m butterfly semi-finals and 100m freestyle semi-finals.
“We have spoken to Adam Peaty and his agent, and British Swimming,” Craig Hunter, vice chairman of the technical swimming committee of LEN, told reporters later.
“We said sorry, we apologised, as we did to all of the teams.
“This shouldn’t have happened. It has happened, and when issues happen we have to apologise.
“We will be submitting the record application for the world record to FINA. It will be signed by the referee, who will follow all the usual protocols. Provided it meets all the viable criteria in the usual way it will be approved, absolutely.
“Of course it is (up to FINA to ratify the record), they are the governing body, but the form has been correctly completed, it has an accurate official time from LEN and we cannot foresee a reason why FINA would not ratify it.”
British swimming officials took the revision in their stride.
“We support LEN’s vigilance in this matter and appreciate the time they have taken to make sure all times are correct,” said national performance director Chris Spice.
“We want this event to be remembered for the amazing achievements of the athletes so it is important that the results are correct.
“We don’t want this to take away from Adam’s amazing performance which we all experienced in a fantastic environment.”