Umitcan Gures Returns from FINA World Swimming Championships

Umitcan Gures helped the 200-yard medley relay team set the school record at the Ivy League Championships (Photo Courtesy: Gail Farris).
Umitcan Gures helped the 200-yard medley relay team set the school record at the Ivy League Championships (Photo Courtesy: Gail Farris).

CAMBRIDGE, Mass. – Harvard men's swimming and diving first-year Umitcan Gures recently returned from the 14th FINA World Swimming Championships in Hangzhou, China, after competing for Turkey.

The freshman from Atasehir, Istanbul, Turkey swam in the 50 and 100 butterfly, and the third legs of the 4x50 and 4x100 medley relay teams.

Gures began his experience with Turkey on Dec. 12, competing in the 100 fly and narrowly missing a semifinal-qualifying mark in the event. Gures completed the sixth heat in 51.41, which was 0.06 shy of the swimmer who claimed the last spot in the finals.

Two days later, Gures returned to pool for the preliminary heats of the 50 fly. Competing in Heat 11, Gures came in fourth place with an effort of 22.96, advancing him to the semifinals. Then with a spot in the final on the line, Gures finished the competition in 22.82, falling 0.07 short of the last spot in the championship field.

Less than 24 hours later, Gures was back on the pool deck with his teammates for the 4x50 medley relay. Their preliminary time of 1:33.11 qualified them for the finals in the opening race of the night session, which produced a ninth-place finish after turning in a time of 1:34.88.

Gures rejoins Harvard boasting the team's top 100 butterfly time (48.34) of the season, accomplished vs. Columbia on Nov. 16, and is also partially responsible for the Crimson's fastest 200 medley relay performance of 2018-19. The first-year followed Dean Farris and Daniel Chang, and preceded Raphael Marcoux at Cornell/vs. Dartmouth in the season opener on Nov. 9. The quartet finished the race in 1:30.02.

Harvard returns to action on Jan. 7, when it faces Georgia on the road in Athens. The meet is set for a noon start.