2024 Australian Olympic Trials: Day 3 Prelims Live Recap

2024 AUSTRALIAN OLYMPIC TRIALS

Day 3 of the 2024 Australian Olympic Swimming Trials kick off Wednesday morning. The meet has been a tale of two groups. The bona fide superstars, like Mollie O’Callaghan, have been having a collective huge meet, while with rare exceptions, the rest of the field, including the nearly-theres, have struggled to get over the hurdle and make noise.

Wednesday’s races will be loaded with stars. That includes the women’s 200 free, where the defending Olympic Champion Ariarne Titmus will square off with the World Record holder Mollie O’Callaghan.

Both swimmers have thrown down electric times earlier in the meet. Titmus was .06 seconds away from her World Record in the 400 free in 3:55.44 while O’Callaghan threw down one of the fastest 100 backs in history in 57.88, which is not even an event she is likely to swim at the Olympic Games.

There is likewise some meat at the back-end of that peloton, with 12-or-so swimmers fighting for six spots in the women’s 800 free relay.

The men’s 800 free heats will not feature the 2023 Worlds silver medalist Sam Short, the event’s main headliner, as only the early heats of the events will be raced in prelims.

The men’s 50 free will be another burner, with Cam McEvoy, the surprise return-to-form 2023 World Champion, looking to secure his spot at a 4th-straight Olympics. Isaac Cooper, who missed the Australian Olympic standard in the 100 back on Tuesday, will battle with Kyle Chalmers and Thomas Nowakowski for the 2nd spot. Cooper’s training has been hyper-focused on sprinting, so this will be his moment to shine.

The men’s 200 fly will be the place to scratch-and-claw: Bowen Gough is the top seed in 1:56.01, but someone will need to find a 1:54.97 to earn an Olympic nomination. It’s not unusual for Australia to have a few empty events at the Olympic Games, often covered for by the incredible brightness of their top stars, and the men’s 200 stroke races have been a place of weakness for the program at past Trials meets as well.

Women’s 200 Freestyle – Heats

  • World Record – 1:52.85, Mollie O’Callaghan (AUS), 2023
  • Australian Record – 1:52.85, Mollie O’Callaghan, 2023
  • Oceanic Record – 1:52.85, Mollie O’Callaghan (AUS), 2023
  • Commonwealth Record – 1:52.85, Mollie O’Callaghan (AUS), 2023
  • Swim Australia OQT – 1:56.49

Top 8 qualifiers:

  1. Ariarne Titmus — 1:55.50
  2. Mollie O’Callaghan — 1:55.68
  3. Lani Pallister — 1:56.54
  4. Jamie Perkins — 1:56.75
  5. Brianna Throssell — 1:56.89
  6. Shayna Jack — 1:56.98
  7. Meg Harris — 1:57.52
  8. Brittany Castelluzzo — 1:57.56

World record holder O’Callaghan cruised to an easy 1:55.68 in the first heat (though she did close in a 28.40 final 50), while Lani Pallister followed her in a time of 1:56.54. Also sneaking into the final from this heat is Brittany Castelluzo, who went sub-1:58 for the first time in her career and eighth finished overall. But the fastest time of the morning came from O’Callaghan’s club teammate Ariarne Titmus, who clocked a 1:55.50 to win the second heat. Behind her was the teenager Jamie Perkins who went 1:56.75 and improved upon her best time of 1:57.13 to go sub-1:57 for the first time, as well as veteran Brianna Throssell who clocked a 1:56.89 and is looking to bounce back after missing the Olympic qualifying time in the 100 fly. Headed into finals, Perkins will be in a very strong position to qualify for her first senior international team.

Shayna Jack won the third and final circle-seeded heat with a time of 1:56,98, a bit over a second off her best time. Under 1:58 in that heat as well were Meg Harris (1:57.52) and Kaylee McKeown (1:57.96). There were four swimmers under 1:58 who didn’t make it out of the heats, showing just how deep Australian freestyle is. Notable swimmers who missed finals include McKeown, 2023 worlds prelims swimmer Kiah Melverton who finished 12th with a 1:58.37, as well as Tokyo 4×200 free relay finals swimmer Leah Neale, who went 2:00.10 and finished 17th.

Abbey Connor dropped over a second from her entry time in the 200 free, going 1:58.54 to finish 13th. While she was never a contender to qualify for Paris in the 200 free, her swim is a good sign for her 200 fly, where she is seeded second with a time of 2:06.59.

Men’s 800 Freestyle — Early Heats

  • World Record – 7:32.11, Zhang Lin (CHN), 2009
  • Australian Record – 7:37.76, Sam Short, 2023
  • Oceanic Record – 7:37.76, Sam Short (AUS), 2023
  • Commonwealth Record – 7:37.76, Sam Short (AUS), 2023
  • Swim Australia OQT – 7:45.80

Top 8:

  1. Thomas Raymond — 8:04.19
  2. Tex Cross — 8:11.91
  3. Alexander Grant — 8:12.06
  4. Alessio Macri — 8;12.17
  5. Noah Kamprad — 8:13.18
  6. Adam Sudlow — 8:16.44
  7. James Smith — 8:18.47
  8. Nolan Carrel – 8:21.05

The far-and-away victor of the men’s 800 free early heats was 16th seed Thomas Raymond, who clocked a time of 8:04.19 and was nearly seven seconds faster than anyone else who raced in his session. He improved a considerable amount off his best time of 8:09.28 and has a chance of finishing in the top eight, with his time being less than a second off of Johann Szymanski’s eighth-seeded time of 8:03.41. In second and third were Tex Cross and Alexander Grant, who both added considerably from their seed times.

Men’s 50 Freestyle — Heats

  • World Record — 20.91, Cesar Cielo (BRA), 2009
  • Australian Record – 21.06, Cameron McEvoy (AUS), 2023
  • Oceanic Record – 21.06, Cameron McEvoy (AUS), 2023
  • Commonwealth Record – 21.06, Cameron McEvoy (AUS), 2023
  • Swim Australia OQT – 21.88

Top 8:

  1. Cameron McEvoy — 21.43
  2. Ben Armbruster — 21.91
  3. Isaac Cooper — 21.92.
  4. Jamie Jack — 22.08
  5. Kyle Chalmers — 22.12
  6. Thomas Nowakowski — 22.23
  7. William Yang — 22.24
  8. Jack Cartwright — 22.28

As expected, McEvoy finished way out in front of the rest of his competitors, clocking a time of 21.43. That time is just 0.02 off of what he went in finals at trials last year. Behind him was Ben Armbruster, who improved from his best time of 22.09 and got under 22 seconds for the first time. Cooper was just 0.01 off of him to be the third person sub-22.

Men’s 200 Butterfly — Heats

  • World Record — 1:50.34, Kristof Milak (HUN), 2022
  • Australian Record — 1:54.46, Nick D’Arcy, 2009
  • Oceanic Record – 1:54.15, Moss Burmester, 2009
  • Commonwealth Record — 1:52.96, Chad Le Clos, 2012
  • Swim Australia OQT — 1:54.97

Top 8:

  1. Matt Temple — 1:56.45
  2. Bowen Gough — 1:57.60
  3. Ruan Van Der Riet — 1:58.39
  4. Kyle Lee — 1:59.13
  5. Harrison Turner — 1:59.23
  6. Alex Fahey — 2:00.60
  7. Lucas Humeniuk — 2:01.56
  8. Joseph Hamson — 2:01.69

As expected, Temple and Gough were the fastest in the 200 fly heats by a considerable margin, with Gough winning the first heat and Temple winning the second. Temple was notably just 0.05 seconds off of his entry time of 1:56.40. Gough meanwhile swam a front-heavy race, splitting 29.76/30.65 on his middle 50s before closing in a 31.09.

Aside from the top two, Ruan Van Der Riet, Kyle Lee, and Harrison Turner all went under two minutes. Lee saw a massive drop in time from his entry of 2:01.27, though he did go 1:59.73 (his old personal best) at 2021 trials.

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Swimfan27
1 month ago

I need someone to please explain to me how MOC is SO GOOD at closing her races. Especially in the 100…does she not “take it easy” so to speak in the first half? I feel like with her closing speed she’d have to be pretty good at the 400

Genevieve Nnaji
Reply to  Swimfan27
1 month ago

She swam 4:07.21 at NSW Open early last year.

For sure she can swim 4:05 or faster now

Noah
Reply to  Swimfan27
1 month ago

My Australian friend told me they’re taught to build the first 50 and sprint the 2nd

Genevieve Nnaji
1 month ago

Is Final not televised on 9Now?

Currently it’s News.

Genevieve Nnaji
Reply to  Genevieve Nnaji
1 month ago

Nevermind. It’s starting half hour from now. All these timezones differences…

Troyy
1 month ago

Just looking back at the W200FR heat results and de Lutiis went 2:02. Wonder if she’ll be next to join the northwards swimmer migration.

Phil
1 month ago

Why would they put such a hard QT in place for the M 200 Fly ? I just checked, the World Aquatics QT is 1:55.78 – Australia 1:54.97 !

Sub13
Reply to  Phil
1 month ago

It’s based on results from the previous world championship so semis must have been fast in Fukuoka I guess.

Phil
Reply to  Sub13
1 month ago

Thanks! 🙂

snailSpace
Reply to  Sub13
1 month ago

They were even faster in Budapest, so no wonder it’s so fast.

nuotofan
Reply to  Phil
1 month ago

It was the eight time of the 200 fly semis at Worlds 2023

mahmoud
1 month ago

Fun fact – Mollie also swam a 1.55.68 in the 200m free heats in fukota and then ending up breaking the world record.

mahmoud
1 month ago

Titmus and Mollie will possibly both break 1.53 tonight. Titmus would need an almost one second lead at the 150m to have a chance of winning cause Mollie’s last 50 will be mind-blowing.

Sub13
Reply to  mahmoud
1 month ago

I’ve learned not to make big predictions so far.

I expected nothing on day 1 and Arnie, Titmus and Williamson well exceeded expectation. Last night I expected a WR and it missed (although that race was fantastic overall). And the rest of the session was garbage.

No more wild predictions haha

Troyy
Reply to  mahmoud
1 month ago

I hope to see Mollie experiment with a bit faster front half. Say 55.6 and see if her back half holds up.

mahmoud
1 month ago

Matt temple has scratched the 200m fly final

SNygans01
Reply to  mahmoud
1 month ago

Assuming he was the one most likely to get the QT, that is really disappointing – but not that surprising.
I missed watching those heats, and Live Results still isn’t showing the outcome. But amazing (as per report above) that the person ranked 35th on seed times (Hamson) made the final!

Aside from Gough, the remaining guys are all young-ish – hopefully they push each other to some big PBs.
That might be the best we can hope for.

[As Temple is out, who will take that last spot in the A Final?]

Last edited 1 month ago by SNygans01
Emily Se-Bom Lee
Reply to  SNygans01
1 month ago

joseph hamson into the a final

SNygans01
Reply to  SNygans01
1 month ago

OK – so it is actually Hamson that will come in for Temple.
The Heats Recap above omits Ciao Gallo – he was 6th in 1:59.88.

A shame that the two 17yo’s (Alcorn and Gauci) didn’t get through. With just small PBs they both could have made the A Final. I guess they – like many other leading juniors – are now back in heavy work for big comps later (Jnr Pan-Pacs)?

Emily Se-Bom Lee
Reply to  SNygans01
1 month ago

gauchi is in the b final now.

re: gallo, the commentators said that a dq graphic came up on their sceen. I guess the author went solely off that, as that result seems to be amended. that’s assuming the commentators were correct in the first place, who knows what they were looking at when they made that comment

Last edited 1 month ago by Emily Se-Bom Lee
SNygans01
Reply to  Emily Se-Bom Lee
1 month ago

Thanks Em. 🙂

Daniel
1 month ago

Coleman went 23.75 swimming butterfly in the 50 Free. Is that a PB?

Emily Se-Bom Lee
Reply to  Daniel
1 month ago

yes, previous pb was 23.87 from 12 months ago

Andy
Reply to  Daniel
1 month ago

I’ve always wanted Sjostrom to do this in a heat or a small event like a Mare Nostrum just to flex

naehh
Reply to  Andy
1 month ago

ah yes the small event Mare Nostrum. I guess for Sjöström anything other than Euros, Worlds or Olympics is small.

About Yanyan Li

Yanyan Li

Although Yanyan wasn't the greatest competitive swimmer, she learned more about the sport of swimming by being her high school swim team's manager for four years. She eventually ventured into the realm of writing and joined SwimSwam in January 2022, where she hopes to contribute to and learn more about …

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