Serbia's Stjepanovic wins 400 free gold

Associated Press
Serbia's Velimir Stjepanovic celebrates after winning the gold medal in the men's 400m freestyle final at the LEN Swimming European Championships in Berlin, Germany, Monday, Aug. 18, 2014. (AP Photo/Michael Sohn)

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BERLIN (AP) — Velimir Stjepanovic of Serbia led from start to finish to win the men's 400-meter freestyle at the European swimming championships on Monday.

Stjepanovic led by more than 2.5 seconds at one point and held on despite slowing in the last lap to win in 3 minutes, 45.66 seconds. Andrea Mitchell D'Arrigo of Italy earned the silver in 3:46.91 and Jay Lelliott of Britain took the bronze in 3:47.50.

World record-holder Paul Biedermann of Germany failed to qualify for the final, finishing ninth in the morning's preliminaries.

Katinka Hosszu of Hungary, a three-time world champion, won the women's 400 medley with a powerful display. Hosszu is hoping to medal in 10 individual races.

Hosszo won in 4:31.03, while Mireia Belmonte of Spain took the silver in 4:33.13 and Aimee Willmott of Britain settled for bronze in 4:34.69.

Jeremy Stravius held off Vladimir Morozov in the final leg to give France the gold medal in the men's 4x100 freestyle relay ahead of Russia. Italy was third.

In the women's 4x100 free, Sweden took gold after Denmark was disqualified. Denmark led from the start of the race but its second swimmer, Julie Levisen, jumped into the pool too soon. The Netherlands took silver ahead of Italy.

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