Russia's Vladimir Morozov (pictured July 2019) won the treble-point skins race
Los Angeles (AFP) - Russia’s Vladimir Morozov racing for Team Iron won the skins to claim MVP honors at the International Swimming League stop in Lewisville, Texas, Sunday, but it was London Roar that topped the club standings.
Morozov, who won the 50m breaststroke and 50m free on Saturday, won the treble-point skins race – three quick-fire elimination heats of 50m free – over American Nathan Adrian of LA Current.
Morozov topped the individual points standings with 43.5 points ahead of Emma McKeon’s 42.
McKeon was among a strong Australian presence that pushed London Roar to the top of the team standings on 484.5 points. LA Current were second on 457 with Team Iron third on 402 and New York Breakers fourth on 278.5.
The four teams took the stage after two meetings in the fledgling professional swim series featuring Energy Standard, Cali Condors, DC Trident and Aqua Centurions – events in which Sweden’s Sarah Sjostrom and American Caeleb Dressel starred.
The Roar, Current, Iron and Breakers teams will clash again next weekend in Budapest in the next event in the league aiming to woo fans with a sprint-centric, all-finals format and lure top swimming talent with significant prize money.
The inaugural season features six meetings, each featuring four of the league’s eight teams with the top four in the team standings to then compete in a series finale in Las Vegas in December.
London Roar thrived despite the absence of some top British talent, including breaststroke world record-holder Adam Peaty, who were attending a national team training camp.
London Roar team thrived despite the absence of some top British talent, including breaststroke world record-holder Adam Peaty (pictured July 2019)
A strong Australian presence propelled the Roar, who rose to the top of the table with the help of McKeon, Cate Campbell, Kyle Chalmers and Minna Atherton.
Campbell and Chalmers won the women’s and men’s 100m freestyles on Sunday and Atherton won the women’s 100m backstroke.
Iron’s Dutch star Ranomi Kromowidjojo won the women’s skins race – edging McKeon in the final heat after Campbell was eliminated in the second.
Olympic champion and multiple world record-holder Katinka Hosszu – the Hungarian swimming’s “Iron Lady” who has an ownership stake in Team Iron, won both the 200m medley and 200m butterfly on Sunday.
“I think it was even more fun than I expected,” she said of the ISL format.
She’ll be looking for a strong showing when the league lands in Budapest next week.