A record-breaking start and an almost equally impressive finish. The host, Antonio Fantin, stole the spotlight from everyone, even on the final day of the Citi Para Swimming World Series in Lignano Sabbiadoro, coming very close to the world record in the men’s 400m freestyle S6 category: the Italian twenty-two-year-old clocked in at 4’48”03, so close to the 4’47”75 set by Sweden’s Anders Olsson in Reykjavik in 2018. Thanks to this result, however, the Veneto native representing Fiamme Oro claimed victory in the open final with 1046 points, ahead of compatriot Federico Bicelli (S7, 981) and Finland’s Nader Khalili (S14, 959).

For Fantin, this also marks the best overall performance of the entire World Series stage, surpassing even his own performance when he set the world record in the 100m freestyle during the first session of races. Here’s his comment: “I expected to swim a couple of seconds slower, maybe 4’50” or 4’51”, but instead I’m improving a lot in the 400. This is a race we prepared for a lot with my coach Matteo Poli, and one of my dreams is to beat this record: it’s a pity because I was really close, but it means it’ll be for next time. The balance of these World Series is extremely positive. The home crowd made themselves heard, as did the home pool, and it’s a great satisfaction, especially after being a forced spectator last year. We’re working well, and the season has just begun; the real goal is in six months in Paris.”

In the women’s 400m freestyle, Switzerland’s Nora Meister claimed victory (979), with silver going to Poland’s Oliwia Jablonska (S10, 957) and bronze to Italy’s Xenia Palazzo (S8, 947).

Poland’s Kamil Otowski secured gold in the men’s 50m backstroke (S1, 995), while among the women, it was a British double with Tully Kearney taking gold (S5, 993) and Ellie Challis silver (S3, 951).

The individual events concluded with the 100m butterfly won by Ihar Boki (S13, 935) and British swimmer Olivia Lily Newman-Baronius (S14, 1015).

On the final day, three Asian records were set, all by athletes from Kazakhstan: Dias Kenzhebek in the men’s 50m backstroke S10 (31”19), Sergey Kinakh in the men’s 200m breaststroke SB9 (2’57”64), and Roman Potapov in the men’s 200m breaststroke SB12 (2’54”19). “We’re very pleased to have been able to participate in this event and achieve excellent results. We’ve set five records here, three of them today, and we’re really satisfied,” they commented in unison.

Adding to this was the fifth African record of the whole event, set by the enthusiastic Ugandan swimmer Husnah Kukundakwe in the women’s 100m butterfly S8 (1’29”75).

Italy maintained the top spot in the medal table throughout the competition, finishing with a total of 17 medals (6 golds, 7 silvers, and 4 bronzes). In second place, Great Britain proved to be a consistent team, matching Italy’s golds with a total haul of 9 medals (6 golds, 1 silver, 2 bronzes), while the United States team closed the podium with 3 golds, 2 silvers, and 3 bronzes.