Heading into the 2013 EnergyAustralia Swimming Championships the overwhelming sentiment was that the swimmers wanted to put last year behind them and show the world that Swimming Australia had turned the page on the controversy that has plagued them since London.
Olympic star Alicia Coutts told the Australian, “”Obviously, there have been negative things after London and I think it’s a good chance to let our swimming speak for us.”
On the first night of competition in Adelaide Bronte Barratt did just that winning the 400 freestyle in a time of 4:03.52. Barratt’s time now puts her on top of the world rankings, surpassing Camille Muffat’s time of 4:04.16, which she swam earlier this month.
Her time was just over Kylie Palmer’s Australian record of 4:03.50.
Barratt led the race from the start turning at the 200 meter mark in a time of 2:00.77 almost a second and a half ahead of Palmer.
Palmer finished second in a time of 4:06.00 followed by Katie Goldman who finished third recording a time of 4:07.39.
Christian Sprenger who had an impressive swim in the prelims, breaking the meet record and coming only one one-hundredth of a second away from his world best in the 100 breaststroke, had an even better swim in the semi-final this evening.
Sprenger qualified for top spot in the final posting a new meet record time of 59.05, which is seven tenths of a second faster than his season’s best and world best 59.75.
Brenton Rickard qualified second in a time of 1:00.87 followed by Kenneth To who finished in a time of 1:01.58.
In the 400 freestyle London Olympian David McKeon made a statement winning the event in a time of 3:43.71. McKeon’s time is the second fastest in the world this year next to Sun Yang’s 3:42.93 and makes him the third fastest Australian man to swim the event behind only Ian Thorpe and Grant Hackett.
Top Australian Men in the 400 freestyle All Time:
Ian Thorpe – 3:40.08
Grant Hackett – 3:42.51
David McKeon – 3:43.71
Kieren Perkins – 3:43.80
McKeon was in control of the race from start to finish, leading Ryan Napolean at the 200 (1:50.93) mark by almost a full second.
17 year old Jordan Harrison battled back from trailing Napolean up until the 350 meter mark. Harrison split a 27.48 in the last 50 (the fastest last 50 in the field) compared to Napolean’s 28.06 and took second in the event posting a time of 3:45.85 with Napolean finishing third in a time of 3:46.26.
All three men were under the winning time from last year’s championship of 3:46.36 where McKeon won as well.
In the women’s 200 IM Emily Seebhom qualified first for the finals tomorrow night swimming a time of 2:11.66.
Alicia Coutts will be heading into tomorrow night’s final in second recording a time of 2:13.37 with Hayley Baker qualifying third in a time of 2:13.78.
Matt Targett touched first in the 50 fly in a time of 23.22. Targett broke Christopher Wright’s record of 23.79 set last year. Wright qualified second in a time of 23.84 followed by Benjamin Treffers who posted a 23.89.
In the women’s 100 butterfly Alicia Coutts qualified for the top spot in the final posting a time of 57.92, which ranks second in the world this year with only Sarah Sjostrom’s 57.66 ahead of her. She was followed closely by Ellen Gandy who finished in a time of 57.99 while Yolane Kukla qualified third in a time of 58.83.
In the women’s multi-class 100 backstroke Taylor Corry (S14) won the event in a time of 1:10.37. Ellie Cole (S9) finished second in a time of 1:14.17 with 14 year old Maddison Elliott (S8) taking third in a time of 1:19.84.
In the men’s multi-class 100 backstroke Grant Patterson (S3) won the event in a time of 2:00.72. Michael Anderson (S10) finished second followed by Daniel Fox (S14) who finished third in a time of 1:04.82.
Full results can be found here.
Swim Australia has also put up a video introducing the world to their swimmers which you can see here.