2023 Canadian Trials: Day 2 Finals Live Recap

by Ben Dornan 82

March 29th, 2023 Canada, International, News


The first night of racing at the 2023 Canadian Swimming Trials featured a surprising world record from Summer McIntosh who swam a 3:56.08 in the 400 freestyle. As racing gets started in Toronto on night two of the meet, we’ll be breaking down each race as we wait to find out if any new records will be broken tonight.

The first event will be the multi-class para 50 backstroke, followed by the women’s 50 backstroke and then the men’s. The Maggie MacNeil will take us into the 100 butterfly final, having swum a 57.30 during prelims. Canadian record holder and reigning world champ MacNeil will try to punch her ticket to Fukuoka tonight and if she wins, she could be joined by the #2 finisher. Katerine Savard swam the #2 time in the morning with a 58.17, which is under the FINA A cut of 58.17. Kamryn Cannings (58.73), Ella Jansen (59.22), and Rebecca Smith (59.59), however, were right on her tail and will be in the mix here as well.

Next up will be the men’s 100 butterfly, in which Josh Liendo reserved lane four for tonight’s final with his morning swim and Canadian record of 50.78. We’ll see if he has another national record in him tonight as he attempts to qualify for World Championships.

The session will end with two heats of distance in the women’s 1500 freestyle and the men’s 800, followed by the multi-class para 400 and 200 freestyles.


  1. Niki Ens S3 – 1:10.02
  2. Aly Van Wyck-Smart S3 – 1:14.03
  3. Hannah Burns S4 – 1:05.26

All three of the top swimmers in the final dropped from their prelims times, with Niki Ens from the S3 class leading the way with a 1:10.02. She was followed by fellow S3 competitor Aly Van Wyck-Smart (1:14.03) and S4 swimmer Hannah Burns (1:05.26).


  1. Kylie Masse – 27.41
  2. Ingrid Wilm – 27.59
  3. Maddy Gatrall – 28.61

After loosing the 100 backstroke to Ingrid Wilm last night, Kylie Masse was out in full-force tonight en route to a gold medal in the 50 backstroke. In the middle of the pool, the duo raced neck-and-neck for a majority of the 50 meter race, with Masse out-touching Wilm at the finish with a time of 27.41. Wilm settled for second with a 27.59. After finishing 24th in the 100 backstroke, Maddy Gatrall had a great performance here to nab 3rd place with a 28.61. Gatrall’s swim marked a half second drop off of her personal best entering the meet, which stood at a 29.19.

Both Wilm and Masse are already qualified for the World Championships in the 100 backstroke, making them the most likely choices for this event at Worlds.


  1. Javier Acevedo – 24.90 CANADIAN RECORD
  2. Loic Courville Fortin – 25.56
  3. Tristan Jankovics – 26.09

Javier Acevedo put on a show in the final of the men’s 50 backstroke, dominating the race from start to finish and coming up with a new Canadian Record in the event. Acevedo had a strong start, getting to an immediate lead, and he never looked back. At the wall, he touched in a time of 24.90, over a half second ahead of the field. In addition, Acevedo broke his own Canadian Record of 24.97  from last year with his swim, moving himself up to 6th in the world for the 2022-2023 seasson. Loic Courville Fortin and Tristan Jankovics held their positions from the prelims session, coming in 2nd and 3rd to round-out the podium.


  • Canadian Record: 55.59 – Maggie MacNeil (2021)
  • FINA ‘A’ Cut: 58.33
  1. Maggie MacNeil – 56.54
  2. Katerine Savard – 57.81
  3. Kamryn Cannings – 58.67

Maggie MacNeil pulled off an expected win in the women’s 100 butterfly, swimming a 56.54. She was a bit more than half a second faster than her prelims swim of 57.36, dipping under the 57 mark for the first time this season. This meet actually marks MacNeil’s first long course 100 butterfly since she swam at the Commonwealth Games in Birmingham in 2022. There, MacNeil won gold in a 56.36.

With this swim, MacNeil will qualify for the 2023 World Championships team and will have as shot at winning another world title in the 100 fly. MacNeil first won gold in 2019 in Gwangju, two years before becoming an Olympic champion in Tokyo. Her best time comes from that swim in Tokyo when she posted a 55.59 for the win.

MacNeil didn’t race individually at World Championships in 2022 so if she heads to Fukuoka it will be her first Worlds 100 butterfly in four years.

Katerine Savard has also qualified for Worlds with her swim in the A final, hitting a 57.81 to beat the FINA A cut of 58.33. Savard was the second seed heading into this event, having cleared the FINA A during heats with a 58.17. Kamryn Cannings shaved 0.06 seconds off her morning swim to claim the bronze medal with a 58.67 and Rebecca Smith dipped under 59 with a 58.98 for fourth place.


  • Canadian Record: 50.78 – Josh Liendo (2023)
  • FINA ‘A’ Cut: 51.96
  1. Josh Liendo – 50.36
  2. Ilya Kharun – 51.45
  3. Finlay Knox – 52.11

Just as he did in the prelims, Josh Liendo delivered a new Canadian record in the 100 butterfly final. Liendo won this event with a 50.36 to chop another 0.42 seconds off the national record of 50.78 he set this morning. Liendo was already the fastest man in the world this season based on his prelims swim and this time gets him even further ahead of the #2 man Shaine Casas who has hit a 50.80.

Liendo’s time is more than a second and a half under the FINA A cut, which means that he’ll qualify for the World Championships in Fukuoka this summer. Liendo is now closer than ever to getting under 50 seconds in this event, a feat that only four men have ever accomplished. He’s now the 5th-fastest performer in history.

All-time Performers – Men’s 100 Butterfly

  1. Caeleb Dressel – 49.45 (2021)
  2. Kristof Milak – 49.68 (2021)
  3. Michael Phelps – 49.82 (2009)
  4. Milorad Cavic – 49.95 (2009)
  5. Josh Liendo – 50.36 (2023)
  6. Joseph Schooling – 50.39 (2016)

Coming in behind Liendo’s national record swim was Ilya Kharun who also swam under the FINA A standard of 51.96 to qualify for Worlds this summer. Kharun swam a 51.45 for the silver medal, dropping 1.21 seconds from his morning swim and 0.09 seconds from his lifetime best of 51.54 from earlier this season.

Finlay Knox rounded out the top three with a 52.11, trailing his best time from 2022 of 51.86. Filip Senc-Samardzic came in a bit more than a second later with a 53.39 for fourth place.


  • Canadian Record: 15:57.15 – Brittany Maclean (2014)
  • FINA ‘A’ Cut: 16:29.57
  1. Emma Finlin – 16:20.61
  2. Laila Oravsky – 16:45.11
  3. Julia Strojnowska – 16:47.54

Emma Finlin was the third seed heading into this event with the 16:31.49 that she swam in early March 2023 at the Alberta Provincial Championships. Finlin, in lane 3, got off to a dominant start and immediately began distancing herself from the rest of the field in this 1500 freestyle. With some incredibly consistent splitting, hitting 32s and 33s on nearly every 50, Finlin stopped the clock at a 16:20.61 to win the gold medal.

Finlin was the only person in this heat to crack the FINA A cut in this event and has seemingly qualified for her first-ever senior international team in pool swimming for Canada. Finlin swam at the 2022 World Championships in open water, competing in the 5k and the team relay. With this time, Finlin becomes the 6th-fastest Canadian female in history behind Brittany Maclean, Brittany Reimer, Summer McIntosh, Olivia Anderson, and Abby Dunford.

Laila Oravsky came in 25 seconds after Finlin with a 16:45.11 and Julia Strojnowska touched a few seconds later with a 16:47.54 for the bronze medal. Katrina Bellio placed 4th with a 16:51.67 and Abby Dunford was 5th with a 16:59.59, both missing their lifetime bests of 16:24.37 and 16:20.26, respectively.


  • Canadian Record: 7:41.86 – Ryan Cochrane (2011)
  • FINA ‘A’ Cut: 7:53.11
  1. Eric Brown – 7:56.96
  2. Alex Axon – 8:03.05
  3. Yu Tong Wu – 8:09.99

Eric Brown swam to victory in the men’s 800 freestyle with a 7:56.96 to improve upon his entry time in this event by a few seconds. Brown was the top seed heading into the meet with a 7:59.68, which he swam one year ago to win gold at the 2022 Canadian Swimming Trials.

Brown swam at the 2022 World Championships in the open water competition and this time will likely get him a nomination for pool racing as he got under Swimming Canada’s secondary standard in the event. Brown just wrapped up his freshman year at the University of Florida.

Following Brown in this event, fellow open water swimmer Alex Axon hit an 8:03.05 to just miss his lifetime best of 8:02.24 from last year’s Trials. Yu Tong Wu rounded out the podium with an 8:09.99 and Benjamin Cote was fourth with an 8:10.39.


  1. Aurelie Rivard – 4:45.00
  2. Sabrina Duchesne – 5:29.93
  3. Katie Cosgriffe – 5:02.82

Aurelie Rivard swam a bit slower than her lifetime best of 4:24.08 from 2021 when she became a Paralympic champion but still pulled off the win in the 400 freestyle. Rivard hit a 4:45.00 for a gold medal. Rivard has won various Paralympic and World Championships medals in this event and might be in the mix later this year at the Para World Championships.

Sabrina Duchesne touched in a 5:29.93 to pick up silver and Katie Cosgriffe earned bronze with a 5:02.82. Abi Tripp finished in 4th place with a 5:28.96 and Mary Jibb was 5th, touching the wall with a 5:18.62.


  1. Zach Zona – 4:47.76
  2. Philippe Vachon – 4:47.88
  3. Reid Maxwell – 4:40.17

The gold and silver medalists in this race touched just 0.08 seconds apart from each other in the 400 freestyle. Zach Zona touched with a 4:47.76 for the gold medal and Philippe Vachon came in right behind him with a 4:47.88 to take second place.

Both of those men raced the 400 freestyle at World Championships last year, and each finished in the top 6. Vachon took 5th place overall with a 4:49.16 and Zona was 7th with a 4:51.24. Reid Maxwell notched a 4:40.17 for the bronze medal and Noah Jaffe placed 4th with a 4:45.11.


  1. Angela Marina – 2:16.57
  2. Emma Van Dyk – 2:22.28
  3. Niki Ens – 4:54.31

In the final women’s event of the night, Angela Marina swam her way to a gold medal in the 200 freestyle. Marina swam a 2:16.57 for the gold medal, improving upon her entry time of 2:16.79. At last year’s World Para Swimming Championships, Marina raced to a 10th-place finish in the S14 200 free with a 2:17.46.

Emma Van Dyk also raced at World in 2022, placing 12th in the S14 event with her swim of 2:20.62. She was just shy of that time here, swimming a 2:22.28 for the silver medal. Niki Ens‘ 4:54.31 was good enough for bronze and Alisson Gobeil touched in a 3:33.38 for 4th.


  1. Nicholas Bennett – 1:56.46
  2. Tyson MacDonald – 2:04.97
  3. Connor Bissett – 2:07.99

Last year’s S14 World Para Championships silver medalist in the 200 freestyle Nicholas Bennett was the quickest swimmer in the 3-man field tonight. Bennett hit a 1:56.46 to win the event, slightly trailing his lifetime best of 1:54.41 from last year.

Tyson MacDonald and Connor Bissett took home the silver and bronze medals, respectively, with their times of 2:04.97 and 2:07.99.

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1 year ago

where do I find a schedule of Saturday, April 1st events. This web site has a lot of info but nothing for swimming fans looking to attend the trials. Thx

Reply to  JQuinn
1 year ago

Click “Meet Central” in the links at the top.

1 year ago

Congrats to Josh on beating a “pissed off Joe Schooling”

1 year ago

Disappointing result for MacNeil. Very well Liendo.

Reply to  Paul
1 year ago

She swam the fastest time in the world this year lol

Reply to  Paul
1 year ago

And she swims ‘fast’ when it matters

1 year ago

That Canada-Florida linkup!!! 🔥 🔥 🔥

1 year ago

Can’t wait for tomorrow. Liendo, MacNeil, McIntosh, Knox, Dergousoff, Mastromatteo, Smith, Angus, Wog, Nicol, Pickrem all competing! And for para swimmers we have Rivard, Dorris, Routliffe!

Reply to  phelpsfan
1 year ago

And Savard too.

1 year ago

Can Summer just time trial something tonight just to get us more excited!

Reply to  Snarky
1 year ago

Can’t wait for the 200 IM tomorrow! Curious to see if she can do a new PB (Or maybe even set a new WR)

1 year ago

Liendo with a half-second PB in the 100 fly and Eric Brown with nearly a 3 second PB in the 800 means the Canadian Gators are a perfect 5/5 on best times so far this meet.

Sherry Smit
1 year ago

Can we get an update on what the Pan AM Games roster is looking like so far?

Sherry Smit
Reply to  Ben Dornan
1 year ago

That’s true. Also with world juniors, I didn’t think that through.