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Last Updated: Monday, 31 July 2006, 20:29 GMT 21:29 UK
GB miss out on early Euro medals
Annika Liebs (L), Petra Dallmann (2nd L), Britta Steffen (2nd R) and Daniela Goetz
Germany's relay team shone during Monday's finals
British swimmers failed to get medals on a record-breaking opening night for Germany at the European Championships.

Commonwealth champion David Carry managed fifth in the 400m freestyle final won by Russian Yury Prilukov.

In the 400m individual medley, British record holder Becky Cooke was sixth, while teenager Hannah Miley was seventh as Alessia Filippi of Italy won gold.

But Germany crowned the first pool race night in Budapest with a world record in the women's 4x100m freestyle relay.

The quartet of Petra Dallmann, Daniela Goetz, Britta Steffen and Annika Liebs clocked three minutes 35.22 seconds to break the previous mark of 3:36.00 set by Australia at the Athens Olympics.

I didn't feel well before the race but after the heats we set our eyes on the world record

Britta Steffen
German relay gold medallist
Third swimmer Steffen produced the fastest split with 52.66 seconds, surpassing her German record in the individual 100m of 54.29.

"It can't have been me - I still can't grasp and believe that I clocked 52.66," she said.

"I didn't feel well before the race but after the heats we set our eyes on the world record."

Elsewhere, Italy bagged their second title of the evening in the men's 4x100m freestyle relay.

Alessandro Calvi, Christian Gallenda, Lorenzo Vismara and 100m world champion Filippo Magnini clocked 3:15.23. Russia finished second and France were third.

But there was disappointment for Frenchwoman Laure Manaudou. Her bid to win a record number of gold medals was dashed when she failed to qualify for the 400m individual medley final.

The 19-year-old, who was thought to have a chance of breaking the championship record of six individual and relay golds was sixth in her heat and 18th overall with a time of 4:54.61.

The British women's 4x100m freestyle team finished fifth, while their male compatriots were also fifth but were later disqualified for a changeover infringement.

Top British breaststrokers James Gibson and Chris Cook will go head-to-head for honours in the 100m on Tuesday night after qualifying third and fourth fastest in their quickest swims of the year.

In the women's 200m backstroke, Britain's Mel Marshall and 15-year-old Lizzie Simmonds both reached the finals.



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