BUDAPEST, Hungary — Giorgio Minisini and Manila Flamini earned Italy its first gold medal of the world swimming championships by winning the mixed duet technical synchronized swimming competition on Monday.
Minisini and Flamini finished with a total of 90.2979 points, edging Russia’s Mikhaela Kalancha and Aleksandr Maltsev by just 0.034 of a point.
“Doing 90 in this competition is something unbelievable. We couldn’t even think about such high scores,” Minsini said.
The Italian pair impressed the judges with a choreography called, “A Scream from Lampedusa,” created by Russian synchronized swimmer Anastasia Ermakova, and dedicated to the huge numbers of migrants arriving on the Italian island between Sicily and Tunisia every year.
“Italy had two bronze medals in Kazan. But we wanted to be better,” Minsini said of the last worlds in Russia. “Every day of the year we worked hard to get on the top. It was very important for us.”
Their win brings Italy’s medal tally at the worlds to one gold, one silver and three bronze.
Bill May and Kanako Spendlove claimed bronze, the United States’ first medal of the championships, with 87.6682 points.
“I feel amazing. I’m not disappointed with this bronze medal at all,” said May, who won gold in this event at this 2015 worlds. “I’m happy with my result and with other performances.”
Spendlove won four medals (one gold, three silver) at the worlds in 2003 and 2005 when she was representing Japan.
The women’s 3-meter springboard final and men’s 10-meter platform final in synchronized diving were taking place later Monday.