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Publicado em: 08/06/1993

BORGES ON TOP

 The world of swimming – vol.IV. nº.2 – April,may,june - 1993

The Olympic silver medalist swam the 100m freestyle in 47.94, below the FINA standard. He also contributed to a surprising world record from the Brazilian 400 freestyle relay (3:13.93)


On July 2nd, first day of the Brazilian Championships in Santos, Gustavo França Borges broke the 48 second barrier. In 47:94 the Brazilian overtook the 48.20 achieved by Michael Gross in the 100m freestyle short course on 11th February 1988, and equivalent to the time standard set by FINA in March 1991.

Borges, whose international achievement is of a fairly recent date (he was still unknown in 1990), was born in Ribeirão Preto (São Paulo) on December 2nd, 1972. He is 2m03 tall, has massive hands and an enormous natural talent. In Brazil he swims for E.C. Pinheiros Club and is coached by Alberto Klar. Until two years he was studying and training in Florida, at “Bolles School Swim Club”, in the locality of Jacksonville, under coach Gregg Troy ( in Barcelona he guided the Thailanders). Among his team mates there were three other Olympic medalist: Nesty, Lopes Zubero and Burgess.

On his arrival in Bolles, Borges swam the 100m in 51.44. The year after, in 1991, he won the Pan American Games in 49.48. In Bolles he learnt to double his training and increase his strength with weights. For two seasons he has been at the University of Michigan – he will graduate in 1996 – in Economics under the carte of Hungarian origin technician Jon Urbanchek, who has also trained the American national olimpyc squad.

Up to now Gustavo Borges has been famous, above all, for the thrill which marked his arrival in the Olympic final of the 100m freestyle in Barcelona.

In the tight finish, won by Alexander Popov in 49.02, the Brazilian was classified fourth, therefore outside podium position, and the silver medal was presented to the Frenchman, Caron. The results board, however, had gone wayward. After a long consultation the order of arrival was modified and the silver was rightly presented to Borges with the eighth best all-time performance of 49.43. The last day of the championships, on July 7th, Borges contributed to the 400m freestyle relay world record by swimming the first leg in 48.19. After him Fernando Scherer swam the fasted leg, in 47.95, while José Carlos Sousa Jr. completed his (third) leg in 49.37 and Teófilo Ferreira anchored in 48.46. The relay time, 3:13.97, betters the previous mark; 3:14.00 set by the Swedish relay in 1989 and equivalent to the FINA time standard.