World record breaker Peaty claims European Championship gold

World record breaker Peaty claims European Championship gold

04 August 2018 / 19:04
When champions are questioned they step up to the plate but few produce answers quite like Adam Peaty.

The 23-year-old set a new world record in the men's 100m breaststroke at the European Swimming Championships, just four months after one of the biggest tests of his career.

The 50m breaststroke may not be his signature event, but Peaty was surprisingly beaten into silver at the Commonwealth Games and he admits he was struggling for form.

But, back racing in his favoured 100m, he clocked 57.00s in Glasgow - just 0.01s off his ultimate goal, which is to become the first man to ever go under 57s.

Project 56 was initially designed for Tokyo 2020, but maintain this form and the nine-time European gold medallist could achieve it sooner.

“I was not going out there to break a world record, but I got out there and thought it was so easy down the first 50m,” he said.

“When I came back, all the passion and emotion and disappointment of the Commonwealths fuelled me down that last 50.

“I now have another level of motivation. If I went under 57s here then people would be talking about project 55.”

It was a dream day for Great Britain as James Wilby took silver but most eyes were fixed on Peaty throughout the race.

By half-way, he was clear of the field and it came down to a battle against the clock. He was off world record pace at the turn but he came roaring back down the final 50m to send the crowd wild.

“I don’t want to just win I want to dominate and that is not an arrogant side – that is my competitive side in me,” he said.

“I know if I can get that side out of me without the anger then I will be good. It is all about the race. I know deep down I was born to race. I let it happen out there.

“When you go four years without losing it is like anything. Even if you don’t want to admit it, you get complacent and that team around you tries to keep you up. You do have ups and downs.

“I am lucky to have such a good team around me. I felt good coming into this but I did not think I could do that this quickly.”