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Australian Youth Olympic Festival Wrap Up

The Australian Youth Olympic Festival came to a close earlier today and is being considered a huge success.

Many of the participants expressed just how excited they were to compete in such an event, “My favourite part of the Festival was the Opening Ceremony,” said British basketballer Dwayne Lautier-Ogunleye.

“It was really cool walking out and watching the performances.”

One of the basketball players from New Zealand expressed his feeling on the ‘Games’ like atmosphere, “The village has been amazing- very different to anything I’ve experienced before.”

Australian Alanna Bowles who set the 800 freestyle AYOF record on the last evening of competition was excited to have the chance to swim in an international competition, “It’s great to have other countries here; swimming against them has been a great experience.”

The athletes not only enjoyed their experience, but many coaches were happy with how their athletes competed and what they have learned during the festival.

Bernie Mulroy, Head Coach of the Australian Swim Team said, “The Australian Youth Olympic Festival has replicated the Olympic experience in a minor way, but has given the athletes the experience of working as a team and with different coaches in a challenging and foreign environment.”

“They have carried themselves professionally in the way that they have gone about preparing for races, how they have warmed down, the choices they have made with food intake and the respect they have shown to their competitors.”

Mulroy should be extremely happy with how his team performed in the pool considering the Aussies broke 17 festival records and would have won the meet easily if they would not have split their team into two squads.

“Splitting the squad into two teams has created a fantastic rivalry and tight racing not only with each other but also against the Japanese, Canadians, New Zealanders and the Oceania team,” explained Mulroy.

Team scores were as follow:

Japan – 296

Australia Green – 257

Australia Gold – 253

Canada – 134

New Zealand – 96

Hungary – 65

Brazil – 52

China – 32

Oceania – 3

The swimming competition proved to be the fastest in the history of the festival with 26 out of a possible 32 AYOF swimming records being broken.

The following records were broken during the event:

Women’s 200 freestyle – Amelia Gould – Australia Green – 1:59.79

Men’s 200 freestyle – Regan Leong – Australia Gold – 1:48.97

Women’s 100 backstroke – Hayley Baker – Australia Green – 1:01.29

Men’s 100 backstroke – Takeshi Kawamoto – Japan – 54.66

Women’s 200 butterfly – Madeline Groves – Australia Gold – 2:11.20

Men’s 200 butterfly – Masato Sakai – Japan – 1:58.35

Women’s 100 freestyle – Jemma Schlicht – Australia Gold – 55.94

Men’s 100 freestyle – Alexander Graham – Australia Green – 50.07

Women’s 100 breaststroke – Jenna Strauch – Australia Green – 1:08.90

Men’s 100 breaststroke – Kohei Goto – Japan – 1:02.23

Women’s 400 IM – Yui Ghashi – Japan – 4:43.54

Women’s 800 freestyle relay – Japan – 8:07.54

Men’s 800 freestyle relay – Australia Gold

Women’s 400 freestyle – Amelia Gould – Australia Green – 4:12.67

Women’s 100 butterfly – Jemma Schlicht – Australia Gold – 59.73

Men’s 100 butterfly – Takeshi Kawamoto – Japan – 53.82

Women’s 400 freestyle relay – Australia Gold – 3:46.26

Men’s 400 freestyle relay – Australia Green – 3:21.85

Women’s 800 freestyle – Alanna Bowles – Australia Gold – 8:38.61

Women’s 200 IM – Sydney Pickrem – Canada – 2:15.15

Men’s 50 freestyle – Luke Percy – Australia Gold – 22.46

Women’s 200 breaststroke – Jenna Strauch – Australia Green – 2:27.55

Men’s 200 breaststroke – Kazusa Araya – Japan – 2:15.80

Men’s 1500 freestyle – Mack Horton – Australia Green – 15:04.87

Women’s 400 medley relay – Australian Gold – 4:06.89

Men’s 400 medley relay – Japan – 3:42.06

Australian Mack Horton had one of the most impressive swims of the competition, chasing 1500 freestyle records held by two legendary Australian swimmers; Grant Hackett’s 16 year old all comers record of 15:03.67 and Kieren Perkins 16 Australian record of 14:58.08, “I’ve done heaps of training so it was nice to do a PB tonight. It would have been better to beat Hackett’s Australian All Comers record and go under 15 minutes, but I’m happy with my time,” said Horton who finished in festival record time of 15:04.87.

Looking ahead the Aussies hope that their team’s performance at this event is a sign of good things to come, “If we can get all of these guys competing at the next Olympic Trials it will prove that this program has been a success. They now have to go back to their home coaches and work hard which I am confident they will do,” said Mulroy.

 

 

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