Russia got the first gold but the second went to Spain
For a bit of surprise, only one of the two titles on offer on the opening day stayed at home at the LEN Artistic (Synchronised) Swimming Champions Cup in St. Petersburg. The Russians won the Team Technical but Spain bettered them in the Highlights events.
Medallists, Day 1
Team Technical Routine
- Russia 95.2961, 2. Spain 89.7351, 3. Greece 84.7804
- Spain 90.8667, 2. Russia 88.2667, 3. Israel 83.6667
Russia grabbed the first gold in the Champions Cup as they earned a rather convincing win in the Team Technical event, gaining 5.5610 points on silver medallist Spain while Greece finished third. This also ensures a conforming advantage for the home team before the free routine since the Olympic spot shall be decided on the basics of the combined results (technical + free).
Svetlana Kolesnichenko and returning queen Svetlana Romashina also did a splendid job in the duet free prelims. They advanced to the finals in the first place, ahead of Ukraine’s Marta Fiedina and Anastasia Savchuk.
The evening session featured the opening ceremony which was attended by Russia’s Deputy Prime Minister Olga Golodets who opened the event together with LEN president Paolo Barelli and Russia’s Synchro Fed President Alexey Vlasenko.
In his welcome speech President Barelli underlined that “Europe is traditionally the strongest among all continents in aquatics and this is even more so in synchro. LEN is proud of its wonderful athletes who are ready to deliver their very best on every occasion” he said.
The first day was concluded with the Highlights routine, where the hosts were a bit surprisingly overtaken – though they entered their second strongest line-up – and Spain won the event by a tiny margin of 2.6 points with Israel finishing third.