2018 Oceania Female Swimmer of the Year: Ariarne Titmus, Australia
Ariarne Titmus just missed a medal at the 2017 World Championships, but in 2018, the 18-year old broke into her own as the next bona fied Australian superstar.
Her year started with 3 golds and a silver at the Commonwealth Games, including a new Oceania and Meet Record in the 400 free. She ran into Katie Ledecky’s wake at Pan Pacs, but took silvers in both the 400 and 800 free in new Australian and Oceania Records as well, touching in 3:59.66 and 8:17.07, respectively.
She now ranks 3rd in history in the 400 (behind only Ledecky and Federica Pellegrini) and 11th in the 800 free.
She capped off the year with 2 gold and 2 bronze medals at the 2018 World Short Course Championships, winning the 200 and 400 frees individually and breaking a World Record in the 400 in 3:53.92.
Titmus graduated from ‘high potential’ to ‘here’ in 2018. She’ll have to swim most of her career against the greatest distance swimmer in history, Katie Ledecky, but she’s on pace to decimate at least the Australian Record books.
In no particular order:
- Cate Campbell of Australia had another banner year. At the home Commonwealth Games on the Gold Coast, she won 3 gold medals (50 free, 50 fly, 400 free relay) and took silver in the 100 free (behind her sister Bronte). She later picked up 5 gold medals at the Pan Pac Championships, including a sweep in the 50 and 100 free, beating American Simone Manuel (the World and Olympic Champion) in both. She also anchored the Australian women to another World Record in the 400 free relay and recorded the two fastest splits in history in the 100 free: a 51.00 anchoring that World Record relay at the Commonwealth Games; and again with a 50.93 anchoring the mixed 400 medley relay at Pan Pacs.
- Emma McKeon of Australia racked up a ton of medals in 2018. She won 4 golds (including the 100 fly individually) and 2 bronze medals at the Commonwealth Games; and repeated the same count at Pan Pacs (with all of the golds being relay medals). She swam the preceding leg to Campbell on that World Record setting 400 free relay at the Commonwealth Games as well.