2021 BRITISH SWIMMING SELECTION TRIALS
- Wednesday, April 14th – Sunday, April 18th
- Prelims at 10am local/Finals at 7pm local
- London Aquatics Centre
- British Olympic Selection Policy
- Primary Olympic Selection Meet (not only opportunity)
- Day 1 Recap/Day 2 Recap
- Live Stream
- Live Results
Heading into the meet Whittle had a PB of 49.97 from back in 2019 and lowered it to a 49.31 in the prelims. By getting down to a 48.76 he becomes the fastest 16-year-old in British history, beating out Matthew Richards‘ former age group record of 48.88 which he swam at the 2019 European Junior Championships in Kazan, Russia.
For reference to just how fast a 48.76 is from a 16-year-old, we can take a look at how fast 2016 Olympic Champion Kyle Chalmers was at that age. In April 2015, Chalmers posted a 48.89 at the 2015 Australian Swimming Championships & World Championship Trials to take out Cam McEvoy‘s previous mark of 49.70. Just one year after that age group record by Chalmers, he went on to become Olympic champion in the event with a 47.58 World Junior Record which stood until October 2020 when Andrei Minakov lowered it to a 47.57.
Chalmers is the gold standard, globally, for 16-year old sprinters.
Whittle is also faster than the reigning world champion in the event Caeleb Dressel was at age 16. In 2013, Dressel posted a new US 15-16 age group record of 49.28; a mark that still stands today. Dressel has gone on to dominate the international scene in the long course 100 freestyle, winning gold at 2017 Worlds with a 47.17 and again in 2019 with a 46.96. Dressel is also one of three men to ever crack 47 seconds in the event and is the closest swimmer to Cesar Cielo’s 46.91 world record from 2009.
Duncan Scott pulled off the win in the event at 2021 British Trials with a 47.87 while Matthew Richards followed with a 48.23. Tom Dean reached the podium with his 48.51 and Whittle’s record-breaking 48.76 was good enough for fourth. While Whittle was just over the Olympic selection standard of 48.35 and this is not the sole qualification opportunity for the British Olympic squad, it could end up being fast enough for a spot on the 4×100 freestyle relay.
By hitting a 48.76, Whittle ties David Cumberlidge as the 6th fastest man in British history. Scott matched his own British record in the event while Matt Richards and Tom Dean became the 3rd and 5th fastest British men in the event’s history.
All-Time 100 Freestyle Ranking – Great Britain
- Duncan Scott – 47.87
- Simon Burnett – 48.20
- Matt Richards – 48.23
- Adam Brown – 48.48
- Tom Dean – 48.51
- Ben Proud – 48.52
- Lewis Edward Burras – 48.58
- Jacob Whittle / David Cumberlidge – 48.76
- Calum Jarvis – 48.79
Whittle’s swim also undercuts Duncan Scott‘s 17-year-old age group record of 49.09 from 2015 and gets him just 0.10 seconds away from Scott’s 48.66 18-year-old record.