Dávid Verrasztó, silver medalist in the 400-meter individual medley at the 2017 FINA World Aquatic Championships in Budapest, was handed the medal by legendary Hungarian medley swimmer Tamás Darnyi, reports Index.hu.
Although the 28-year-old Verrasztó failed to make it to finals in the 2016 Rio Olympics, this time he qualified for the 400-meter individual medley with the third-best time, and came in second with a time of 4:08.38.
Medals were originally intended to be handed over to medalists in the four individual medleys by former president of the Hungarian Swimming Association (MÚSZ) Tamás Gyárfás. But when it was Verrasztó’s turn to receive his medal, Gyárfás stepped aside and gave way to Darnyi, who handed over the silver and patted Verrasztó’s shoulder.
Tamás Darnyi dominated the individual medley competitions between 1985 and 1993. He won the 200/400-meter medley double at the 1988 and 1992 Olympics, the 1986 and 1991 World Championships, and the 1985, 1987 and 1989 European Championships. During this period, Darnyi set the world record in both medley events three times. After his retirement in 1993, he became a successful child coach and instructor in Hungary.
In an interview with the state-run Kossuth Radio before the world championships, Darnyi – who avoided media appearances for more than two decades after his retirement – said he was going to cheer for Verrasztó because he had known Verrasztó since he was a child, and had seen him grow up in the swimming pool.