2017 Aussie National C’ships Day 1 Finals Live Recap: McEvoy 21.55



  • Swimming Australia QT – 1:57.12
  • The Podium
    • Mitch Larkin – 1:56.66
    • Josh Beaver – 1:56.95
    • Clyde Lewis – 1:58.83

Double world champion Mitch Larkin expectedly retained his 200m backstroke title, earning the win tonight in 1:56.66. That’s well under the qualifying mark of 1:57.12, which is for what Larkin said he was aiming this meet, as opposed to any best times. Larkin, who says he feels as though he’s sometimes ‘learning to swim again’ under his new coach Simon Cusack at Commercial was a mighty 1:53.90 at this same point last year (Olympic Trials).

Nunawading’s Josh Beaver also retained his runner-up status, stopping the clock just about .3 of a second behind Larkin. 1:56.95 is what the 24-year-old registered for the win, just off his 1:56.57 mark that rendered him in 10th place in Rio. He, too, made it under the 1:57.12 qualifying mark for Budapest.

The 2 men now sit as the world’s 4th and 5th fastest swimmers in the event this season.

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Finishing just outside qualification is 19-year-old former Larkin teammate Clyde Lewis, who settled for bronze tonight in 1:58.83. He’s still got to be happy, however, with this morning and tonight representing his first two sub-1:59 marks of his young career.

Reminder that there is no semi-final format at this year’s edition of the National Championships; instead, the format goes from prelims straight to finals.


Although TSS Aquatics swimmer David Morgan scored the only sub-52-second time of the men’s 100m butterfly final, it still fell short of the stiff Aussie-mandated World Championships-qualifying time of 51.81. Even Morgan’s personal best of 51.64 wouldn’t have been enough to meet the mark, so it’s no shock the Aussies will have no men representing them in Budapest in this event. Morgan, Australia’s 2nd fastest performer of all time behind Olympic medalist Andrew Lauterstein, does now check-in as the 3rd fastest swimmer in the world this season.

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Grant Irvine raced his way from 4th seed to a silver medal tonight, stopping the clock in a solid 52.08 for the 4th fastest time of his career. In Rio, the St. Peters Western swimmer finished 13th overall in a time of 51.87, .11 off the personal best of 51.76 he notched to win silver at this same meet last year.

19-year-old Bond University up-and-comer Brayden McCarthy is an up-and-comer among the Aussie sprinting ranks as a member of the Aussie men’s 4x100m freestyle relay that won gold at the 2015 World Junior Championships. After clocking a personal best this morning by almost a full second and half (52.98), McCarthy hacked over another half a second off to claim bronze in a new career fastest. He, along with Morgan, will be racing the men’s 50m freestyle later tonight.


After a monster morning swim of 52.78 to score the world’s first sub-53 second 100m freestyle this season, 24-year-old Cate Campbell wound up racing slower tonight, collecting the bronze in a time of 53.30. The gold went to younger sister Bronte Campbell instead, with the double world champion registering a super swift 52.85 to now sit as the 2nd fastest swimmer in the world behind big sis. This marks just the 4th time in her career that Bronte, who has been battling shoulder issues for the past 2 years, has notched a time in the 52-point realm.

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Not to be overlooked is silver medalist Emma McKeon, who got the job done to make the Aussie team individually in this women’s 100m freestyle event. McKeon rocked a monster time of 53.12, the 3rd fastest time of her career. At this meet last year, the Olympic bronze medalist in the 200m freestyle notched a personal best of 52.80, a time which etched her into the 4th position of Australia’s top female performers.

18-year-old Shayna Jack laid waste to her own personal best from this morning, earning a mega 53.40 for 4th place. With C1 opting out of the World Championships, Jack’s new 18-year-old national age group record-setting time should secure her a spot on the women’s 4x100m freestyle relay. Jack, who trains with the Campbell sisters under Simon Cuscack is cited by C1 as being ‘responsible for turning up’ the training at Commercial.


In an incredible feat, 16-year-old Ariarne Titmus denied both reigning national champion Jessica Ashwood and open water national champion Kiah Melverton in an eye-popping women’s 800m freestyle final. Cranking out a mega personal best tonight of 8:23.08, Titmus annihilated her previous career fastest of 8:37.50 by almost 15 seconds. Titmus, who won the women’s 400m freestyle short course national title last November, now checks-in as the 5th fastest Australian performer of all-time in this event. Her time now also ranks as the #1 mark in the world this season, as well as stands as the new Aussie 16-year-old age group national record.

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Also qualifying for Budapest is Ashwood, who managed a solid 8:25.16, though it’s more common for the Chandler swimmer to have a sub-8:20 outing at a major meet. Melverton, Aussie’s 5k open water national champion, earned bronze in 8:34.76.


  • Swimming Australia QT – 22.02
  • The Podium:
    • Cameron McEvoy – 21.55
    • James Roberts – 21.91
    • Will Stockwell 22.33

Just when it looked as though Cameron McEvoy would potentially be the only Aussie male to qualify in the men’s 50m freestyle for Budapest, 25-year-old James Roberts pulls an ace from his sleeve. McEvoy topped the field handily, dropping his own world-leading time of 21.73 from the morning to a new low of 21.55. That mark represents the 2nd fastest time of the Bond swimmer’s career, whose personal best sits at 21.44 from this meet last year. McEvoy’s outing tonight would have finished 4th in Rio – that’s how fast this kid is on Aussie soil.

But, Somerset veteran athlete Roberts proved that the best things come to those who wait as he just hammered out his own personal best time of 21.91 at age 25. Having never dropped beneath the 22-second threshold ever in his career, Roberts hacked about a half a second off of his own career-fastest 22.38 from this morning’s heats to qualify for the 2017 World Championships individually. Roberts now moves into 6th place on the All-Time Aussie list of performers in this splash n’ dash event.

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Will Stockwell scored an impressive time of 22.33 for bronze, while 19-year-old Brayden McCarthy, fresh off of his 100m butterfly bronze, earned a 4th place finish in 22.40. McCarthy’s best entering this meet was 23.16, but the 19-year-old McEvoy protegé has now brought that down to 22.40 in a matter of 2 races today.


A tight battle ensued in the men’s 400m freestyle event, but 20-year-old Olympic champion Mack Horton pulled out the win for his 3rd consecutive national title in the race. Being led by St. Peters Western’s David McKeon through 250m mark, Horton started making his move, solidly outsplitting McKeon every lap thereafter, closing in a speedy 27.70 final 50. Both men qualified for the World Championships under the Aussie-mandated mark of 3:47.19.

For Horton, his outing tonight ranks as the 5th fastest of his young career – not bad for his first rested/tapered meet of the season.

Just as in last year’s edition of this meet, which doubled as the Aussie Olympic Trials, Jack McLoughlin found himself with the bronze, clocking a mark of 3:46.96. That’s just off the 3:46.27 he notched in 2016 and also dips beneath the QT. The 3 Aussies now rank as #1, #4 and #5 among the top times in the world this season.

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  • Swimming Australia QT – N/A
  • The Podium:
    • Jenna Strauch – 32.11
    • Chelsea Hodges – 32.51
    • Georgia Wells – 32.85

The top seeds from this morning, which included Jessica Hansen, Georgia Bohl and Aisling Scott opted out of tonight’s final, giving Bond swimmer Jenna Strauch a chance to shine. Strauch took advantage, dropping .7 off of her mroning outing of 32.81 to top the podium in 32.11.

Southport teen Chelsea Hodges finished exactly .4 behind in a time of 32.51, while Georgia Wells from Commercial touched in 32.85 for bronze.

In today’s prelims, Hansen notched a personal best of 31.19 to fall just outside of the Aussie All-Time top 10 performances in the event.


Marion Swimming Club easily took the win in the men’s 4x100m freestyle relay, as the crowd was treated to 100m freestyle Olympic champion Kyle Chalmers’ first swim of the meet. Clocking the swiftest split of the field, Chalmers notched a very solid anchor of 48.22 after teammates Travis Mahoney (50.84), Hayden Lewis  (51.78) and Andrew Abood  (49.64) set the clear water up nicely.

Chalmers didn’t include the men’s 50m freestyle in his event line-up this meet, so his first individual comes tomorrow in the men’s 200m freestyle prelim.


With just one team in the field, Yeronga Park nabbed the gold in 4:00.03.


In This Story


  1. friula says:

    One super, one monster and one mega time in one race. Not bad.

  2. Nlm says:

    Bronte’s 22 not Cate. But awesome swim by her, McKeon (on getting the individual swims) and Jack to get onto the relay!

  3. Bigly says:

    Geez. Hope Cate Campbell figures out how to swim a finals race again.

    • Nlm says:

      I honestly wouldn’t put too much focus on how C1 swam tonight. It was obvious (well from how I saw it) that she just went out there to enjoy herself and wasn’t too upset with losing. Though she still has bragging rights on the fastest swim of the day.

      • Sarah83 says:

        Cate looked fine afterwards, but to me it looks like there’s still some mental fragility left over from Rio. Bragging rights from the morning don’t count if you’re unable to perform when it really matters. Bronte looked great though, hope she can carry that form through to Budapest.

        • Nlm says:

          I was actually joking about the bragging rights. My Aussie dry sense of humour sometimes goes out the window when in print.

          In terms of Bronte though, awesome swim especially since she had her shoulder taped up (most likely precautionary / control the pain) in the footage they showed pre-race from earlier in the day.

        • Bigly says:

          Wonder if Bronte is now going to be Serena to Cate’s Venus.

  4. Sarah83 says:

    Great swim from 16 year old Ariarne Titmus in the 800 free, it’s good to see new faces stepping up to make the team.

  5. mannnnnnnnn says:

    It’s not a good time for Larkin

  6. Skoorbnagol says:

    Cate Campbell is the new Mago.
    Head has completely gone.
    World record holder and has no confidence in big races…. good job Australian swimming

  7. Sugna010101 says:

    Are charmers and McEvoy still the two clear favourites after Roberts swim?

    • commonwombat says:

      Hard to say as Chalmers has been short of racing and has had health issues post Rio. One would hope that Chalmers & McEvoy ARE the 2 qualifiers in the 100FR as Roberts’ has NEVER backed up domestic performance in international waters

  8. VGM says:

    Can you please include para events in the recap?

  9. Sir Swimsalot says:

    Happy to see McEvoy doing well. He was shaky in Rio, so I hope we see good things from him this year.

  10. Bill G says:

    4 swimmers under 53.4 in the women’s 100m free is impressive … Oleksiak’s decent 53.8 from this week at Canadian Trials would’ve been 5th …. US Olympic Trials in 2016 saw Weitzeil at 53.28 and Manuel at 53.57 … an off-form Elmslie too (6th in 54.38, about 7 tenths off her seed time … Elmslie won gold at short-course worlds beating Ranomi K. and Oleksiak) … even without Cate Campbell the AUS 4×100 free relay looks stout

    • Prickle says:

      Very good prospects for Australian relay. It can be still challenged by Americans if they are able to repeat 52.5, 52.7 splits. That is a big “IF”, because we are talking about Weitzeil and Ledecky.

      • Murica says:

        Worell, Comerford (especially) bout to explode in this event. Simone’s gonna be faster than last year. It will be a very good race. I say USA but I’m biased.

        • Prickle says:

          Too early to talk about Comerford. She is already treated like the only saver of American 800 and 400 relay. Her 1:40.36 in 200 free yards raised a great deal of expectations. But she may happen to be too slow at 100 m and 200m may happen to be too long for her. As of today she is 53.91 and 1:59.60 (all shown month ago)

          • Pvdh says:

            I’m not counting on anything regarding the 200 yet from her, but I think she’s shown enough in the 100 for us Americans to depend on her.

          • Caleb says:

            yeah yeah she hasn’t done a world-class time yet but 1:59 in prelims of a tune-up meet when she’s in full SC training mode… and 1:40 in SC… it’d be a pretty big surprise if she’s not at least 1:57 this summer… 1:56 or even 1:55 would be less surprising than 1:58.

            IMO Ledecky, Smith, and Margalis look like 3 fastest legs right now… Manuel or Comerford next, McLaughlin or Runge right behind. Gold medal favorites however it shakes out.

        • Murica says:

          Smoliga, Lia Neal. Abbey won’t be over 54.00 (only cheated a little to go 45.9!!)

    • commonwombat says:

      WITH C1, AUS would still have to be favoured. Without her, they’re ripe for the picking as the (now) 4th swimmer is around 1sec. Elmslie hasn’t looked good long course this season and has failed to lift for Trials. Most likely, the co-optees for 4th swimmer/heats look likely to be Wilson and/or Seebohm as at least one of them should qualify individually in backstroke.

  11. IMs for days says:

    Seeing such a young winner in the 800 reminds me of Ledecky. This is off topic, Ledecky is insanely good and is destined to be one of the greatest ever, but don’t you guys wish she had someone to actually race. I find her nost interesting races are the 2013 80pm and 1500m as Friis challeneged her. All of phelps great races are thoose where another swimmer challenges him. Ledecky is obviously just to good, but it would more interesting if someone could go with her and give her challenge, something we have not seen outside of the 200 since 2013

    • Prickle says:

      What great about Ledecky’s dominance is that it doesn’t kill the competition and interest to long distances. She made 8:20 to look slow and pushed many young swimmers to be at least at Janet Evans level.

    • Jared says:

      Her approach was very ledeckian though the time was not.

      Very promising. Especially in mthe early stages which very meuch reminded me of Ledecky’s swim at London (though again not in terms of time).

      I see no reason she couldn’t go an 8:15 or something at world which would put her near Ledecky’s time from London, young kids drop big time once they get a bit of confidence all the time, but 8:04 is still just flat out next level.

  12. commonwombat says:

    M200BK: Larkin’s first race post Rio and it certainly showed. Beaver is a career 1.56 man and that’s what he swam to

    M100FLY: Morgan looked by far the best esp on 2nd 100 but a tough QT. Will almost certainly get a ticket to Budapest for the medley relay but will hope for a 200FLY swim but that is another tough QT

    W800FS: Major cudos to Titmus who just went out there and gave herself every chance. A massive PB. Ashwood well off her 2015-2016 level

    W50FR: McEvoy totally untroubled; the issue for him is whether he can back this up internationally and whether HE can/has bounced back mentally from Rio. Minor surprise to see a 2nd qualifier but not exactly thrilled that its Roberts given his international formline

    M400FR: Horton swam a well paced race but then again he should be well versed in the capacities/weaknesses of his prime competition. Time reasonable enough but it will be interesting to see what other intl times are posted going into Budapest. Would’ve preferred to see McLoughlin 2nd qualifier ahead of McKeon but he still has a chance at 1500

    W100FR: Major cudos to C2 given her health/injury isssues of past 16 months. McKeon solid; will be interesting to see if she can take advantage of this international opening in this event. Jack – very pleasing. What to make of C1 ? Did she decide to just play “rabbit” to the field given her decision to miss Worlds or did we see another “air swing” ?

    W4x100 thoughts: WITH C1, they are still very much in the frame for gold in Budapest. Without her, the fall off from C2/McK/Jack to the prospective 4th swimmer is at least 1sec and potentially enough to cost them the top step at least. WILL there be an approach to C2 to make Budapest a “busman’s holiday” (only swim relays) rather than a complete break …. ?

    • bobo gigi says:

      Commonwombat, keep posting your thoughts about Australian swimming. Your knowledges are valued. You replace very well Aswimfan who was the specialist of Australia for swimswam until he has totally disappeared from the website a few years ago.

  13. Pvdh says:

    It’s still incredible to me that cate isn’t racing worlds. Is her pride that wounded?

    • Aussie crawl says:

      How long does it take to get over a hernia operation?
      She totally backed off in the last 35 metres.

  14. Pvdh says:

    Larkin and Murphy have looked a little vulnerable in their domestic races this year. But I doubt it carries through to the summer

    • commonwombat says:

      This meet IS Larkin’s first race outing of the season. He and his new club managed to bungle their entry for the main lead-in meet, NSW Open, so he missed a key outing that most others availed themselves of

  15. 800 says:

    Is there a results link to the 800?

  16. ERI says:

    Stay tuned for 2020 for when the aussies choke when it matters most just like always

  17. aquajosh says:

    Will Stockwell is the progeny of Mark Stockwell (3 silver medals in 1984 including the 100m free) and Tracy Caulkins, the most prolific female swimmer ever. He’s second in the swimming gene lottery only to Manon Manaudou-Bousquet.

  18. Breaker12 says:

    Why would the three girls opt out of swimming the 50 breaststroke?? I know that they concentrate on other distances but cmon have a go

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About Loretta Race

Loretta Race

Loretta grew up outside Toledo, OH, where she swam age group and high school. Graduating from Xavier University, she stayed in the Cincinnati, OH area and currently resides just outside the city in Northern KY.  Loretta got back into the sport of swimming via Masters and now competes and is …

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