David Popovici grabs second gold medal at the World Swimming Championships

Romanian 17-year-old swimmer David Popovici on Wednesday won another gold medal in the men’s 100m freestyle event of the World Swimming Championships in Budapest, obtaining a time of 47.58 seconds. Popovici secured his first gold medal at these championships in the men’s 200m freestyle event.

Frenchman Maxime Grousset ranked second with 47.64 and Canadian Joshua Liendo Edwards placed third with 47.71 seconds in the men’s 100m freestyle event.

David Popovici had managed the best time in the heats – 47.60 sec, as well as in the semifinals, setting a new junior world record of 47.13 sec.

David Popovici (Dinamo Sports Club), a debutant at the Senior World Championships, brought the first long-course world titles for Romanian men’s swimming. So far, Romania had two gold medals won by Tamara Costache (women’s 50m freestyle, 1986) and Diana Mocanu (women’s 200m backstroke, 2001), but its world tally now improved to four gold, one silver and six bronze medals.

His fellow national Robert Glinta (25) finished 8th in the 100m backstroke event, and will compete in the 50m backstroke, which has the heats and semifinals scheduled for June 24. The final will take place on June 25.

Speaking this evening at TVR1 public broadcaster after his second victory, David said that he hopes his performance has made all Romanians proud.

I was glad it was over and that I managed to finish this competition in style. What I can say is that I am glad that the world watched me and that the event was broadcast on TV for millions of Romanians to see and – I hope this isn’t an overstatement – to support me. I hope I have made everybody proud. I hope you were happy for me, just as I was happy. I have a busy summer ahead, a full competition season, but I’m looking forward to it. What’s next in the very near future is a little break and some down time to reflect on what just happened,” he stated.

David added that he didn’t do any special training for this edition of the World Championships.

“I didn’t do any extraordinarily intense training for this competition. This makes me even more optimistic about what might happen in the near future. But I would be lying if I said that I wasn’t in a good competitive shape. I just didn’t know it, and I think it’s good that I can still surprise myself. I’m a just a fast-swimming kid, an ordinary guy capable of extraordinary things and of inspiring people. Who has extraordinary people behind him. Swimming is a very healthy sport, football is too. I’m in favor of any sport, sport is the best ambassador. And a sports-wise educated population is a healthy population, prepared to also face issues in other walks of life. I think my uncle called me the ‘Romanian missile’, he sometimes comments on social media. I like to be called like that, if this is an inspiration to people,” Popovici said.

BudapestDavid Popovicigold medalmen's 100m freestyle eventsecondWorld Swimming Championships
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