The 20-year-old’s impressive feat was further highlighted by breaking his previous record of 3:50:33 which he set in March 2016 in Singapore. This time, he clocked at an astonishing 3:49:48. Horton came in at close second at 3:50:13 while China’s Qiu Ziao took the bronze with 3:51.18.
Sim’s victory marks the second time a Malaysian has won the Mare Nostrum Tour, World Of Buzz reports. Last year, Phee Jinq En also grabbed the gold in the women’s 50 meter breaststroke event.
Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak expressed his support for the swimmer by posting a congratulatory tweet:
“Congratulations, our swimmer Welson Sim won the gold medal in Monaco, smashed the national record and beat the Olympic champion on the way.”
Welson Sim first made headlines in 2016 when he competed in the same category at the 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. It was the first time a male Malaysian swimmer ever qualified for the Olympic Games in the men’s 13 and over 400 meter freestyle category.
Sim, who began his competitive swimming lessons when he was just 10 years old, participated in his first swimming championship the following year at age 11 in the President’s Cup in Sarawak.
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