The International Swimming Hall of Fame (ISHOF) formally inducted two Hungarians, Olympic Champion Ágnes Kovács and the man credited with inventing the modern wave-style breaststoke, coach József Nagy, into the Hall of Fame.
direction of Hall of Fame coach, László Kiss, 15-year old Ágnes Kovács won the
bronze medal in the 200 meter breaststroke at the Olympic Games of Atlanta in
1996. She would go on to dominate her event for the next four years, winning
every major international competition, including the gold medal at the Sydney
Olympic Games in 2000.
Following her Olympic success, Kovács won her event
again at the 2001 World Championships in Fukuoka, Japan, before moving to the
United States to attend Arizona State University (ASU). When she left ASU in
2005 it was as a fifteen-time All-American and as the schools top senior female
Returning to Hungary, she rejoined the national team program and was a
crowd favorite, winning three medals at the 2006 European Championships in the
same pool where she first learned to swim 22 years earlier, on Budapest’s
historic Margaret Island.
acceptance speech, Kovács thanked her parents and coaches for helping her
realize her childhood dream of becoming an Olympic champion. It was a dream
first conceived when she watched Hall of Famer compatriot Krisztina Egerszegi
win Olympic gold on television.
is the inventor of the ‘wave action breaststroke’, a technique used by all of today’s
breaststroke swimmers. Among his talented swimmers was American Mike Barrowman,
who held the world record in the 200 meter breaststroke for ten years.
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