Belmonte Garcia Claims Fourth Gold at the FINA World Short Course Championships

Make that four oros for Mireia Belmonte Garcia

The 24-year-old Spanish winner earned her fourth gold medal Friday by winning the women’s 400 freestyle at the FINA World Short Course Championships.

Mireia Belmonte Garcia

She touched in at 3:55.76 to win the middle-distance freestyle event, smashing Katie Hoff’s meet record of 3:57.07 from 2010.

The barely time missed Belmonte Garcia’s own world record of 3:54.52 set last year in Berlin on the FINA World Cup circuit.

Belmone Garcia came in ahead of The Netherlands’ Sharon van Rouwendaal and Chinas’ Zhang Yufei.

Belmonte Garcia is just the third European woman to ever win four gold medals at a single World Short Course Championship (200 IM, 400 IM, 400 free, 800 free). She joins The Netherlands’ Marleen Veldhuis (2008) and Sweden’s Therese Alshammar (2000, 2002).

Belmonte Garcia also joins USA’s Janet Evans as just the second swimmer to win both the women’s 400 and 800 freestyle events at the same worlds.  Evans did it back in 1993.

Belmonte Garcia Wins 800 Freestyle Gold at the FINA World Short Course Championships

Mireia Belmonte Garcia is a golden girl again…

The 24-year-old Spanish swimmer cruised to victory in the women’s 800 freestyle on Thursday to claim her third gold medal at the FINA World Short Course Championships.

Mireia Belmonte Garcia

It only took two nights, and Spain’s Mireia Belmonte Garcia already matched her gold-medal output from 2010 as she topped the 800 free tonight with a meet record.

On Wednesday, Belmonte Garcia won the women’s 200-meter butterfly and 400-meter individual medley in record times.

Belmonte Garcia chased down the distance freestyle gold with an 8:03.41. That equals her 2010 output, which was the most gold medals won by a Spaniard in short course worlds history.

Belmonte Garcia’s time may not have been close to her world record 7:59.34 from the Berlin stop of the FINA World Cup last year, but it was more than enough to crack Rebecca Adlington’s 2008 meet record of 8:08.25.

Belmonte Garcia Smashes Two World Records at the FINA World Short Course Championships

There seems to be no stopping Mireia Belmonte Garcia

The 24-year-old Spanish swimmer was unbeatable on the opening night of the world short-course championships, winning the women’s 200-meter butterfly and 400-meter individual medley in record times on Wednesday.

Mireia Belmonte Garcia

In both races, newly crowned female world swimmer of the year Katinka Hosszu of Hungary was forced to settle for second spot.

“I wasn’t expecting such a performance. It’s like a dream… unbelievable. I had an amazing race,” said the 24-year-old Garcia, who won two sliver medals in the 2012 London Games.

“I was nervous before the start but after the win in the first race, I got the motivation. In the last month, I had made very good preparations and thanks to my coach for helping me out. The wins ahead of [the] Rio Olympics (in 2016) are a huge motivation for me.”

In the 200 butterfly, Garcia finished in 1 minute, 59.61 seconds, eclipsing the record of 2:00.78 set by Zhige Liu of China in 2009.

Defending champion Hosszu led until the last 50 meters, and came second in 2:01.12. Franziska Hentke of Germany was third.

The script stayed very much the same in the 400 IM, with Hosszu leading for three quarters of the race. However, Garcia finished fast to touch home in 4:19.86 and break the previous record of 4:20.85 set by Hosszu in Berlin in 2013.

Hosszu, the World Cup series champion, finished well below her personal best in 4:22.94. Hannah Miley of Great Britain came third with a time of 4:24.74.

Belmonte Claims Her Second Silver Medal at the London Games

London Olympics 2012

Mireia Belmonte García may soon be called Spain’s “silver bullet”…

Following her second place finish in the 200 meter butterfly to put her country on the medal scoreboard , the 21-year-old Spanish swimmer picked up her second silver of the 2012 Olympic Games on Friday in the women’s 800m freestyle.

Mireia Belmonte

Despite finishing four seconds behind the surprise victor, 15-year-old Katie Ledecky of the United States, Belmonte managed to swim past defending Olympic champion and pre-race favorite Rebecca Adlington of Great Britain at the 700-meter mark to move into second place.

Belomonte touched the wall at 8:18.76 to claim the silver and give Spain its third-ever Olympic medal in women’s swimming.

Mireia Belmonte

Adlington, was seeking to become the first British woman to retain an Olympic title, following her success in the event in Beijing, had to settle for bronze.

Belmonte Claims Spain’s First Medal at the London Games

London Olympics 2012

Mireia Belmonte García has put Spain on the scoreboard at the London Games

The 21-year-old Spanish swimmer earned silver in the final of the 200 meter butterfly in women’s swimming on Wednesday with a time of 2:05.25 to give Spain its first medal of the 2012 Olympic Games in any event.

Mireia Belmonte Garcia

But that’s not all… Belmonte’s surprise performance was only the second Olympic medal in swimming for a Spanish woman.

Belmonte was thisclose to swimming her way to the gold medal, leading the pack throughout the race. But China’s Jiao Liuyang produced a potent last lap to zoom past Belmonte for the gold and set a new Olympic record with a time of 2:04.06.

Mireia Belmonte Garcia

Japan’s Natsumi Hoshi finished third to take the bronze.