After 3 golds and 2 silvers, Kristóf Milák celebrates simply

August 18. 2022. – 01:04 PM


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He did not have a big celebration after his last swim, but he is preparing a few surprises for next year – Kristóf Milák told Hungarian journalists after he finished competing at the European Championships in Rome with three gold and two silver medals.

At the press conference held on Wednesday, when asked to describe exactly how he celebrated, the olympic champion said:

“Don’t think of anything unusual. Simply being here, at home makes me happier than if I were to spend six days partying at Sziget festival. These are really simple things, sometimes so average, that even an average person might find them strange.”

In his last swim, the 200 meter butterfly, Milák, the defending champion, won with a great time. His teammate Richárd Márton came in second, and Milák called him up to the top of the podium at the ceremony.

Milák told the journalists that after the EU championship he will take a few weeks to rest, but he will still be doing some training, as he doesn’t want to lose the musculature he worked hard to build. He added that he is a fan of active rest, and when MTI asked for an example, he mentioned that out of the many things he plans to do, there is an event in September that he is especially excited about: thanks to one of his sponsors, he will be able to hop in a race car in Austria’s Spielberg at the Red Bull Ring.

Outstanding results

It was Milák’s third time becoming the continent’s best in the 200 meter butterfly this past Tuesday. This is the seventh best result of all time in this discipline – and it was Milák’s fourteenth swim in Italy’s capital. Six of the seven best times are Milák’s, and only one, the sixth, belongs to 23-time olympic champion Michael Phelps: it’s his 1:51.51 swim in Rome in 2009 wearing the famous shark suit. It was this result that Milák improved in Gwangju in 2019 (1:50.73) and then again at the World Championships held in Budapest this June (1:50.34).

This is the 11th time in four years that the Hungarian swimmer has come within the 1:53 minute barrier, while the American superstar only did it five times in his entire adult career (2001-2016). Apart from them, only four other athletes in the history of the sport can claim to have finished in under 1:53: László Cseh did it twice, 2012 Olympic champion Chad Le Clos, Japan's Szeto Daija and his compatriot Macuda Takesi did it once each.

Milák’s Tuesday win was his third, and the Hungarian team’s fourth gold in the Eternal City this year. He was part of the victorious 4x200 freestyle relay team, and also won the gold in the 100 meter butterfly, while he earned a silver in the 100 meter freestyle race and as a member of the 4x100 meter freestyle relay team.

Future plans

To a question about the upcoming short course season Milák said that although his turn has gotten much better, the 25-meter pool is still not his favourite. He explained that he and his team will have to look at what makes more sense, because it might be better to "quietly and secretly prepare for another big performance in front of the audience”.

The 22-year old swimmer was cryptic when asked about his future plans: “There are one or two things in the pipeline that I haven’t really shown yet, but I think there will be some surprises at the national championships at the beginning of next year”.

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The translation of this article was made possible by our cooperation with the Heinrich Böll Foundation.