SOUTH AFRICAN GRAND PRIX #2 – DURBAN
- Thursday, February 20th – Sunday, February 23rd
- Kings Park Pool, Durban, KZ, RSA
- 50m (LCM)
- SwimSwam Preview
- Meet Mobile – 2020 Grand Prix Invitational Swimming Meet-KZ
Although South African superstar Chad Le Clos isn’t competing at this South African Grand Prix #2 in Durban this weekend, another man has stepped up to the plate to put on a show in the men’s 200m fly.
Ethan du Preez, just 16 years of age, produced a monster lifetime best of 1:56.97 in today’s prelims to take the 2fly top seed by almost 5 seconds. Splitting 56.08/1:00.89, the Cybersmart Aquatics athlete hacked well over 1 1/2 seconds off his previous lifetime best of 1:58.67, a time he logged in the heats of this event at the 2019 World Junior Championships.
There in the Budapest, Preez wound up stopping the clock in a slightly slower effort of 1:58.83 to finish in 8th place in a World Juniors final that saw American Luca Urlando top the podium in 1:55.02. Preez’s time of 1:56.97 here, for perspective, would have bumped him up to 5th in that race as just a newly-turned 16-year-old.
Du Preez still has the final to go tomorrow here in Durban, but his time from prelims already bumps him up to become South Africa’s 4th fastest performer ever in this men’s 200m fly event.
South Africa’s Top 5 Performers All-Time in Men’s 200 Fly
|#1 – 1:52.96||Chad le Clos||RSA||2012 Olympic Games||7/28/2012||London|
|#2 – 1:54.51||Sebastien Rousseau||RSA||2009 World Champs||7/26/2009||Rome|
|#3 – 1:56.92||Dylan Bosch||RSA||4/7/2014||Durban|
|#4 – 1:56.97||Ethan du Preez||RSA||2020 South African Grand Prix #2||2/21/2020||Durban|
|#5 – 1:58.33||Michael Meyer||RSA||2014 Pan Pacific Champs||8/21/2014||Gold Coast|
For additional perspective, du Preez’s time would rank him as the 4th fastest American 15-16-year-old performer all-time, sitting only behind Michael Phelps (1:54.58), Urlando (1:55.21) and Andrew Seliskar (1:56.42).
Taking into account this year we have the Olympic Games, du Preez has now suddenly entered the chat for potential Tokyo qualification come April’s South African Championships. Even if he doesn’t replicate his 1:56-range time in tomorrow’s final, the fact he put up a time within striking distance of the FINA ‘A’ Olympic qualification time of 1:56.48 bodes well for this young flyer.
Du Preez now enters the list of top 20 performers in the world this season at slot #18.