2019 World Championships: Ireland’s 4×200 Free Relay Destroys National Record


  • All sports: Friday, July 12 – Sunday, July 28, 2019
  • Pool swimming: Sunday, July 21 – Sunday, July 28, 2019
  • The Nambu University Municipal Aquatics Center, Gwangju, Korea
  • Meet site
  • FinaTV Live Stream
  • Live results

Swimming in prelims of the men’s 4x200m freestyle relay on Friday morning in Gwangju, Ireland’s Jack McMillan, Robbie Powell, Jordan Sloan, and Brendan Hyland destroyed the Irish National Record with 7:13.91. Their performance was good enough to land them in 16th place overall, up five spots from their seed. The old Irish mark had stood since 2013, when Sean Leahy, Seamus Stacey, Hyland, and Curtis Coulter combined for 7:30.45 at U.S. Open in Irvine.

  Irvine 2013   Gwangju 2019
Sean Leahy 1:52.38 Jack McMillan 1:48.00
Seamus Stacey 1:52.34 Robert Powell 1:48.84
Brendan Hyland 1:54.31 Jordan Sloan 1:47.84
Curtis Coulter 1:51.42 Brendan Hyland 1:49.23
  7:30.45   7:13.91

That is the second relay National Record for Team Ireland in Gwangju. Shane Ryan (49.40), Powell (49.63), Sloan (48.72), and McMillan (49.63) combined for 3:17.38 in heats of the 4x100m freestyle relay on Sunday, finishing 20th overall.

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Solid 5 second drop for Hyland


Will this make the Olympics next year?


12 teams qualified today for the Olympics. Ireland is currently 16th. If no other team swims faster than Ireland in the upcoming year than they should be in as 4 extra spot are given for the 4 fastest teams who haven’t already qualified


Nice. Does anyone know what it took to make the games in 2016 for this event?


I’ve always wondered why so many of their more successful swimmers in recent years (Sloan, McMillan, Ferguson, Sycerika McMahon) are from Northern Ireland. Population wise, the Republic should be churning out the majority. Are the facilities bad in the South or something, or just struggled with development/coaching in the past?

Congrats on the NR.


Andrew Bree was another successful swimmer from Northern Ireland.


Yeah, Mel Nocher, Danielle Hill, Calum Bain… Seems every Irish junior swims for Bangor or Ards in the North at the minute too. Real odd one.


The training facilities were always better in the Republic of Ireland until very recently. It is quite strange come to think of it.


The northern irish sports are heavily supported by the government in comparison to the republic which makes swimming cheaper and the facilities better they also find it far easier to go to the UK to swim at places like mount kelly a swimming boarding school kind of like the UK version of Bolles school sharks


Also only 2 of the republics colleges actually have swimming programmes unlike the northern irish who have a far easier time going to UK colleges eg Loughborough on top of that many of the northern swimmers are high priorities too be in National centres as swim ireland don’t want them to declare for England

Fly Fishing

Until 2012 Northern Ireland had no 50m pools. The training facilities were/are not better than the South with the new Bangor pool excluded.

NornIron Swim

I wouldn’t say the facilities are better in the north. It was only a few years back when we first got a 50m pool. I can only speak about our own club (where are least one of the above swims / swam!) but we weren’t heavily supported by any government. Agreed that it seems to be more common to head away for university if you’re from the north but that doesn’t always equal continued success.

About Anne Lepesant

Anne Lepesant

Anne Lepesant is the mother of four daughters, all of whom swim/swam in college. With an undergraduate degree from Princeton (where she was an all-Ivy tennis player) and an MBA from INSEAD, she worked for many years in the financial industry, both in France and the U.S. Anne is currently …

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