Vollmer, Coughlin Set World Record, Win Gold at World Championships

March 29, 2007

MELBOURNE, Australia - California sophomore Dana Vollmer and former Golden Bears star Natalie Coughlin were part of the United States' 4x200-meter relay that swam a 7:50.09 to set a new world record and win a gold medal on Thursday at the 12th annual FINA World Championships at the Susie O'Neil Pool.

Coughlin led off the relay in a split of 1:56.43 and Vollmer swam a 1:57.49 in the second leg for the United States, whose staff includes Cal head coach Teri McKeever as an assistant coach. The United States broke the old record of 7:50.82 set by Germany in 2006. Germany took second today in 7:53.82.

In the preliminary race for the 4x200 relay on Thursday, the United States swam without Coughlin and Vollmer and barely qualified for the final, swimming an 8:02.87 to take the eighth and last spot in the final. Ninth-place China swam an 8:02.98 and 10th-place New Zealand, with Cal freshman Lauren Boyle swimming the second leg, clocked an 8:04.34.

Cal recruit Hannah Wilson, swimming the second leg, and former Bear Sherry Tsai, anchoring the relay, were part of Hong Kong's 17th-place team that swam an 8:30.55.

Also on Thursday, Coughlin clocked a championship-record 53.40 to take first place in the semifinal of the 100-meter freestyle and qualify for Friday's final. In the 100-free prelim, Boyle swam a 56.03 to tie for 18th and Wilson took 35th in 57.08. Neither qualified for the final.

The World Championships end on Sunday, April 1.

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