Kosuke Hagino Opens Japan Nationals Account On 3:45 For 400m Free Crown

Kosuke Hagino, from Tokyo City Champs to Super Series and back to national champs as a day 1 winner [Photo: Swimming Australia]

The male swimmer of the year in 2014, Kosuke Hagino topped the billboard on the first day of action at the Japanese national swimming championships in Tokyo with a dominant 3:45.19 victory in the 400m freestyle

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The male swimmer of the year in 2014, Kosuke Hagino topped the billboard on the first day of action at the Japanese national swimming championships in Tokyo with a dominant 3:45.19 victory in the 400m freestyle

Comments

HKSWIMMER

Craig – I read somewhere else that earlier in the year Hagino was nursing a slight shoulder injury. Any news on how serious it was/whether it will affect his performances here? Although very impressive a 3:45 is still relatively slow for him given his consistency with 3:44s and his 3:43 last year.

aswimfan

Hagino should just forget about 400 free if he wants to win gold in Kazan/Rio

Craig Lord

Hi HKSwimmer… I saw the quotes supplied to the media in Japan but it wasn’t very clear what the issue was — it sounded more like the kind of pain you hear of when someone is in a heavy training phase, rather than shoulder injury worries…

HKSWIMMER

Thanks Craig – hopefully it’s not too much of an issue and something that he will overcome. I am a fan of Norimasa Hirai and I’m sure Hagino will be fine.

Do we know how tapered he is as well? Would be interesting to be able to place his performances in context. Thanks Craig 😀

Danjohnrob

I think Hagino keeps pushing himself in the 400 free for 3 reasons:
1. He wants to be the best 200 free swimmer in his country and he knows that the best 400 swimmers are often the best 200 swimmers.
2. He wants to keep his options open for Day 1 of the Olympics. If it looks like he’ll have a better chance of medalling in the 400 free vs 400 IM, he has a choice.
3. Nobody is going to call him the best swimmer in the world if he can’t pull-off a fast freestyle leg on a relay representing his country! I believe Hagino wants to be the best!

Bad Anon

Perhaps Hagino will swim both 400free and 400IM in rio, he’ll need advice from Lochte on how to handle doubles, Lochte did well in Beijing and London winning (gold) medal(s )

aswimfan

Bad Anon,

Lochte did not do well (I mean relatively speaking, compared to what he expected from himself, I’m sure) in handling doubles in Beijing and London. Lochte did win one single individual gold in each, insteaf of multiple which I am sure he aimed for (like his successful 2011 Shanghai).

That amazing 400 IM in the first day in London took a bit off him, and then three rounds of 200 free while winning no medal took more out of him, until he lost in tussle against Clary and Irie in 200 back and then lost to Phelps a few minutes later in 200 IM.
And we know that Lochte is tough, very tough.
It was a blessing in disguise for Clary that he didn’t qualify for 400 IM during US trials, making him fresh for 200 back.
Phelps also decided to drop 200 free -as I had expected- making him fresh for 200 IM.

aswimfan

Is Hagino tougher than Lochte at his peak?
His spotty results in the past two years in the meets that mattered makes me doubt it, but we’ll see.

Rafael

And 400 free/400 IM is tougher than 400 IM and 200 free.. and 200 free/back double did not work out fine for Locthe..

Bad Anon

There are no semis for the 400s so thats a significant difference compared to the 200’s. Being smart in the heats, getting an outside lane and pulling off an outside smoke has always happened at the biggest stage. Not suggesting Hagino doubles, but he could theoretically manage to make finals for both 400free/IM. Winning gold is another story . Depends on quality of rivals and dominance in ones event. Someone like Franklin could manage a 200back/200im double in theory as she is 2sec faster than her nearest rival in textile in the 200back. Not sure if Hagino has that cushion

aswimfan

I am having very hard time remembering when was the last time somebody won 400 free from an outside lane.

Definitely not in the last 15 years of world championships and olympics. So it “has NOT always happened”

the truly outside lanes were Perkins in 1500 Atlanta and Van Almsick in 200 Rome, But we all know those were extraordinary situations.

aswimfan

Even Thorpe failed to win 200 in Sydney after extraordinary 400 and 4×100.

And Agnel even had to drop 400 training in order to win 200.

Hagino has the curse of being so good in so many events. It would be a pity if he doesn’t win an olympics gold.

As extraordinary as Hosszu and Sjostrom, both strikingly have not won ANY olympics medals, and both, like Hagino, are sooo goood in so many events.

Bad Anon

At the 2005 montreal worlds, there were a number of world champions from outside lanes including Laure Manaudou in the 400free. It may have escaped your notice.

Bad Anon

Even Kate Ziegler won the 1500 free at the same championship from lane 1. The lesson for Hagino is to be super conservative in prelims and swim best times in the finals. However, precision is key, Cseh was locked out of 400IM final by 0.07 at London Olympics, Hagino will have to make important choices

aswimfan

Bad Anon,

I meant winning 400 from outside lanes. It happens many times in shorter distances of course.

But yes, I forgot about Manaudou’s 400 Montreal, although she was very very erratic in Montreal, and if memory serves me right, she threw tantrum and left Montreal after 400 free.
So I don’t think Laure’s Montreal prelims swim was controlled, it was just by sheer luck/dumb tactic (whichever you look at it) that she ended up in lane 8 in the final.

And apart from Manadou’s Montreal, I can’t think of anyone else winning 400 free in worlds/olympics in the past 15 years.

Again, Hagino may keep swimming all his events in Kazan and Rio and thinks he is the second coming of Phelps, but his strategy left him with less than desired results in 2013 Barcelona, 2014 Pan Pacs, 2014 Asian Games.

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