2024 Australian Open Championships: Day 1 Finals Live Recap


The 2024 Australian Swimming Championships kicked off today with most of the nation’s biggest stars competing on the Gold Coast for high-octane action.

Although the 4-day competition is a non-Olympic selection event, the performances will give us glimpses into where key athletes are at along their journey to June’s Australian Olympic Trials.

But Aussies aren’t the only ones diving in as the green and gold will be sprinkled with athletes from Korea, Japan, New Zealand and beyond.

Refresh this post for live recap coverage of the first session of finals with superstars Meg Harris, Emma McKeon, Sam Short, Kyle Chalmers and more.

Day 1 Finals Start List


  • World Record – 56.88, Adam Peaty (2019)
  • Australian Record – 58.58, Brenton Rickard (2009)
  • Commonwealth Record – 56.88, Adam Peaty (2019)
  • Australian Olympic QT – 59.49

GOLD – Zac Stubblety-Cook, 59.85
SILVER – Joshua Yong, 1:00.16
BRONZE – Ippei Watanabe (JPN), 1:00.42

The men’s 100m breast saw just one swimmer delve under the minute barrier as 25-year-old Zac Stubblety-Cook got it done for gold in 59.85. His season-best entering this competition was represented by the 59.97 logged at last month’s Vorgee Brisbane Senior Metropolitan Championships.

ZSC is straight off of altitude camp in Flagstaff, Arizona and split 28.53/31.31 to get the edge over Joshua Yong who touched in 1:00.16. UWA West Coast’s Yong recently clocked a lifetime best of 1:00.11 at the Japan Open in November so he was just a hair off that performance this evening.

Japan’s Ippei Watanabe snagged bronze in 1:00.42. Watanabe recently won the Japanese Olympic Trials in the 200m breaststroke, where he produced a world-leading time of 2:06.94 to qualify for this summer’s Games.

The 4th place finisher in this event at this year’s World Championships, Samuel Williamson, led the field at the halfway mark in 27.87 but closed in 33.00 to ultimately touch 5th in 1:00.87. His time of 59.21 from Doha represented a lifetime best.

3 of the top 6 Australian performers of all time were in this final, as Matt Wilson settled for 7th well off his best on 1:01.04.

Top 6 Australian Men’s LCM 100 Breaststroke Performers:

  1. Brenton Rickard – 58.58, 2009
  2. Christian Sprenger – 58.79, 2013
  3. *Matthew Wilson – 59.17, 2019
  4. Jake Packard – 59.20, 2018
  5. *Sam Williamson – 59.21, 2023
  6. *Zac Stubblety-Cook – 59.51, 2022

The Australian qualification time for the Olympic Games is 59.49 which means the top swimmers will need to put up the best swims of their lives to get within range at the Trials in June.


  • World Record – 2:06.12, Katinka Hosszu (2015)
  • Australian Record – 2:07.03, Stephanie Rice (2009)
  • Commonwealth Record – 2:06.88, Siobhan-Marie O’Connor (2016)
  • Australian Olympic QT – 2:10.62

GOLD –  Kaylee McKeown, 2:06.99 *Australian Record
SILVER – Ella Ramsay, 2:10.71
BRONZE – Isabella Boyd, 2:13.22

It was the Kaylee McKeown show in this women’s 200m IM as the 22-year-old Olympic champion blasted a new Australian Record of 2:06.99 to grab the gold and put a warning shot out to the rest of the world.

Following up on her impressive 2:08.66 prelims result, McKeown wasted no time getting out in front and leading the field wire-to-wire to erase Stephanie Rice‘s supersuited mark of 2:07.03 that’s been on the books since 2009.

Splits for McKeown’s masterful performance included 27.84, 32.10, 37.48, 29.57 to crush her previous personal best of 2:07.19 established at the 2023 Sydney Open.

She now ranks as the 5th-best performer in history.

Top 5 Women’s LCM 200 IM Performers All-Time

  1. 2:06.12 – Katinka Hosszu (HUN), 2015
  2. 2:06.15 – Ariarne Kukors (USA), 2009
  3. 2:06.88 – Siobhan O’Connor (GBR), 2016
  4. 2:06.89 – Summer McIntosh (CAN), 2023
  5. 2:06.99 – Kaylee McKeown (AUS), 2024

Chandler’s Ella Ramsay snagged silver in 2:10.71 to check in with a new personal best, overtaking the 2:11.07 produced last summer to throw her hat into the potential Olympic qualification ring.


  • World Record: 22.27, Andriy Govorov (2018)
  • Australian Record: 22.73, Matt Targett (2009)
  • Commonwealth Record: 22.73, Matt Targett (2009)

GOLD – Kyle Chalmers, 23.10
SILVER – Ben Armbruster, 23.35
BRONZE – Cameron McEvoy, 23.52

He may not ever call himself a Queenslander, but Olympic champion Kyle Chalmers just turned in a personal best in the 50m fly as a testament to his new training home at St. Andrew’s.

25-year-old Chalmers got to the wall first, powering his way to a mark of 23.10. That erased his previous PB of 23.21 notched at the 2022 edition of this competition. The South Aussie native sneaks into the world rankings in slot #9.

As a refresher, Chalmers recently made the move to train with Olympian Ash Delaney after his coach, Peter Bishop, had his accreditations revoked.

Behind Chalmers this evening was the Chris Mooney-trained Ben Armbruster who clocked 23.35 while Cam McEvoy, bronze medalist at this event at this year’s World Championships rounded out the podium in 23.52.

Armbruster has been as fast as 23.05 in his career and Somerville House Aquatics’ McEvoy owns a PB of 23.07 from last year’s World Championships Trials. His bronze medal time from Doha was 23.08.


  • World Record: 51.71, Sarah Sjostrom (2017)
  • Australian Record: 51.96, Emma McKeon (2021)
  • Commonwealth Record: 51.96, Emma McKeon (2021)
  • Australian Olympic QT – 53.61

GOLD – Mollie O’Callaghan, 52.27
SILVER – Meg Harris, 52.59
BRONZE –Emma McKeon, 53.09

Despite saying after the race she wanted to go faster, 20-year-old Mollie O’Callaghan blasted the 3rd fastest 100m freestyle in the world this season.

Splitting 25.82/26.45, MOC stopped the clock in 52.27 to notch one of two times under the 53-second barrier.

Joining her was the quickest woman of the morning, Meg Harris with the Rackley star earning silver in 59.59, slicing .01 off her morning PB of 52.60.

Emma McKeon, Australia’s winningest Olympian of all time, bagged bronze in 53.09.

MOC’s effort represents her 3rd-fastest outing sitting only behind her lifetime best of 52.08 leading off the Aussie women’s 4x100m free relay. She topped the individual 100m free podium in Fukuoka in 52.16 for her #2 time.

Just off the podium was Shayna Jack in 53.20 while Brianna Throssell ripped 53.77 and Cate Campbell hit 53.91. Throssell’s time for 5th place erases her previous personal best of 53.80 and her speediest effort in nearly 5 years.

28-year-old Throssell is having a career resurgence of sorts. She carried a newly minted 200m free personal best of 1:56.00 from earning bronze in Doha into this competition.

Jack has been swifter than her time this evening, owning a season-best of 52.76 from December’s Queensland Championships. McKeon’s time tonight was a sliver off her 53.00 from February’s Vic Open.

Of note, 8th-seeded Bronte Campbell posted a morning swim of 54.13 but dropped tonight’s final. According to Tom Decent of WA Today, C2 has pulled out of the entire competition due to a calf injury. We’ll post more on this after the session.

When it comes time for Trials, these competitors have proven that the 53.61 Swimming Australia Olympics QT won’t be a problem. Instead, it will be a question as to which 2 swimmers get their hands on the wall first and then who will get there right after in order to snag a coveted 4x100m free relay spot.

Updated Australian 100m Freestyle 2023-2024 Season Rankings:

  • #3 in the World — Mollie O’Callaghan – 52.27, 2024 Aussie Open
  • #4 in the World – Meg Harris – 59.59, 2024 Aussie Open
  • #5 in the World — Shayna Jack — 52.76, 2023 Queensland Championships
  • #7 in the World — Emma McKeon — 53.00, 2024 Victoria Open
  • #13 in the World — Cate Campbell — 53.23, 2023 Queensland Championships
  • #16 in the World — Bronte Campbell — 53.30, 2024 South Australian States


  • World Record – 3:40.07, Paul Biedermann (2009)
  • Australian Record – 3:40.08, Ian Thorpe (2002)
  • Commonwealth Record – 3:40.08, Ian Thorpe (2002)
  • Australian Olympic QT – 3:45.43

GOLD – Elijah Winnington, 3:41.41
SILVER – Sam Short, 3:41.64
BRONZE – Kim Woomin, 3:45.12

This men’s 400m free final contained the past 3 world champions in Elijah Winnington (2022), Sam Short (2023) and Kim Woomin of Korea (2024).

When all was said and done it was 23-year-old St. Peters Western ace Winnington who touched first, registering 3:41.41 in a surge over the final 20m. That is an incredible time at this non-selection meet and whets the appetite for what may come to pass at Trials.

Winnington’s result this evening was only .19 off his lifetime best of 3:41.22 as he got the edge over Short who settled for silver in 3:41.64.

Short’s gold medal-worthy outing from Fukuoka was 3:40.68 so the 20-year-old Rackley swimmer was within striking distance of that performance. His season-best entering this Open was represented by the 3:44.20 put up at December’s Queensland Championships.

Kim touched the wall well back in 3:45.12, off his personal best of 3:42.71 which garnered him the gold this year in Doha over Winnington’s previous season-best of 3:42.86.

Winnington now rips the world rankings crown off Kim and Short now ranks #2 with Kim relegated to #3.

2023-2024 LCM Men 400 Free

4 Woomin
View Top 31»


  • World Record – 29.16, Ruta Meilutyte (2023)
  • Australian Record – 30.05, Chelsea Hodges (2022)
  • Commonwealth Record – 29.72, Lara van Niekerk (2022)

GOLD – Jenna Strauch, 31.04
SILVER – Sienna Toohey, 31.43
BRONZE – Sally Hunter, 31.77

There wasn’t anything Earth-shattering in this women’s 50m breast final, aside from the fact there was a 24-year age gap between the silver and bronze medalists.

Getting to the wall first was 26-year-old Jenna Strauch who clocked 31.04 and 15-year-old Sienna Toohey snagged silver in 31.43. 39-year-old Sally Hunter reaped bronze in 31.77.

Hunter won a gold medal in the 4×100 free relay at the 2007 World Championships but is best known for her 200 breast performances at the 2008 and 2012 Olympic Games.

Toohey’s result was just off her mark of 31.34 personal best set at the NSW State Championships in March.

As a reminder, Tokyo Olympics relay gold medalist, Chelsea Hodges, did not show up for her heat. She has battled injuries ever since her Olympic debut nearly three years ago. She still holds the Australian record, courtesy of her 30.05 bronze medal-winning time from the 2022 Commonwealth Games.


  • World Record: 1:51.92, Aaron Piersol (2009)
  • Australian Record: 1:53.17, Mitch Larkin (2015)
  • Commonwealth Record: 1:53.17, Mitch Larkin (2015)
  • Australian Olympic QT – 1:57.28

GOLD – Lee Juho (KOR), 1:56.97
SILVER – Bradley Woodward, 1:57.67
BRONZE – Josh Edwards-Smith, 1:59.08

Korea’s Lee Juho beat the Aussies for the gold, registering a time of 1:56.97.

29-year-old Lee split 27.21/29.89/30.04/29.83 to come within a second of his national record 1:56.05 put on the books at the 2023 Korean National Trials.

The 6-time Asian Games medalist hit a mark of 1:56.38 to place 5th in this event at the 2024 World Championships.

Bradley Woodward was the speediest Aussie, logging 1:57.67 while Josh Edwards-Smith nabbed bronze in 1:59.08.

25-year-old Woodward of Mingara owns a lifetime best of 1:55.95 from last year’s Aussie World Championships Trials. He placed 6th in the 2back at the 2023 World Championships, producing a time of 1:56.29 in Doha. He currently ranks 4th in the world, courtesy of the 1:55.56 posted at December’s Japan Open.

As long as Woodward can get near those types of performances he should be able to dip under the Swimming Australia-mandated qualification time of 1:57.28 needed for Paris 2024.

As for Edwards-Smith, the 21-year-old Griffith University athlete is still trying to find the gear that earned him his lifetime best of 1:55.42 from the 2022 Queensland Championships. His quickest result last year is represented by the 1:57.09 put up at the 2023 Sydney Open.


  • World Record: 8:04.79, Katie Ledecky (2016)
  • Australian Record: 8:13.59, Ariarne Titmus (2022 & 2023)
  • Commonwealth Record: 8:11.39, Summer McIntosh (2024)
  • Australian Olympic QT – 8:22.20

GOLD – Ariarne Titmus, 8:17.80
SILVER – Lani Pallister, 8:19.38
BRONZE – Eve Thomas (NZL), 8:25.71

The #5 ranked swimmer in the world in this women’s 800m free, Ariarne Titmus, got it done for gold tonight, stopping the clock in 8:17.80.

The St. Peters Western star’s time shaved .07 off the 8:17.87 put up at last month’s NSW Championships.

21-year-old Lani Pallister was next to the wall, hitting 8:19.38 as the silver medalist and only other competitor under the 8:20 barrier.

Pallister has already been as fast as 8:15.11, a time registered at the Budapest stop of the World Aquatics Swimming World Cup last fall. That placed her 3rd in the world rankings.

New Zealand’s Eve Thomas rounded out the podium in 8:25.71, within range of the 8:22.27 notched at the New Zealand Olympic Trials to qualify for this summer’s Games.

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1 month ago

That was just Day 1- enough good performances for a whole competition!

Liam Thompson
1 month ago

Australia’s Women’s 100 Free Depth & Prowess =
USA’s Women’s 100 Back Depth & Prowess

Reply to  Liam Thompson
1 month ago


Reply to  Liam Thompson
1 month ago

Australia has 5 active swimmers in the all time top 10 in 100 free and USA has 1. USA has 3 active swimmers in the all time top 10 in the 100 back and Australia has 2.

Those aren’t comparable

big boogie
Reply to  Sub13
1 month ago

USA backstroke history speaks for itself, does it not?

Reply to  big boogie
1 month ago

We’re talking about current ability, no?

1 month ago

At this point the most ominous swim MOC could do pre-trials would be a 23s 50free

Reply to  John26
1 month ago

Is she entered in the 50?

Reply to  RealCrocker5040
1 month ago

She is but it’s a close double with 100 back so she may skip one

Reply to  John26
1 month ago

I don’t care about her 50 (and I don’t think she has the speed for a 23 tbh). I want to see her backstrokes this week

1 month ago

Is this their Olympic Trials?

Reply to  Jeah
1 month ago

Nope, it’s in June

Sacre Bleu!
Reply to  Jeah
1 month ago

No, as the title of the article says:

Australian Open Championship

1 month ago

Chokevoy is just Australian Michael Andrew but exponentially more likeable

Reply to  Andrew
1 month ago

And Cam has a long course individual gold and isn’t crazy

Khase Calisz
Reply to  Sub13
1 month ago

So being a conservative is now considered crazy?

Reply to  Khase Calisz
1 month ago

Being conservative has been crazy for a while now

1 month ago

Is Popovici swimming today?

Reply to  John26
1 month ago

Yes, in the 50 free unless he scratches

Reply to  RealCrocker5040
1 month ago


1 month ago

I don’t understand…how does MOC basically even split a 100 free every time she swims it??

Reply to  Swimfan27
1 month ago

My Australian friend says they’re taught to open strong/build and then race the last 50. Big shock when he came to 100y and realized it was a full sprint

Reply to  Swimfan27
1 month ago

Struggling to name a single 47-level male swimmer who can split like MOC

Reply to  RealCrocker5040
1 month ago

Phelps is the closest a guy has ever been. Split 23.3/24.2 when he led off the U.S. 4×100 in 47.5… in a supersuit

Reply to  Swammer
1 month ago

And as we all know by now, supersuits really helped with the closing pace, so would lead to tighter splitting in general (have we ever verified this with data? I know it’s the anecdotal belief. Adding to our list).

Reply to  Braden Keith
1 month ago

The idea was that the super suits helped with buoyancy which led to people slowing down less as they got fatigued and sank lower in the water

Pellegrini’s last lap in her super suited 200 free world record swallowed everyone up every time and somehow mollie closed faster than that in Fukuoka

Reply to  RealCrocker5040
1 month ago

The fact that the race is 5 seconds shorter makes it more anaerobic.

Reply to  Swimfan27
1 month ago

Maybe dressel 2.0 or chalmers

1 month ago

Well…this was a very fast day for the national championships. Saw Kai’s 1:45.8 lead off with that negative split and that on its own is pretty interesting but I’m curious to see Giuliani’s 2 free. Also yeah 400 free WR is on watch at Aussie trials as now either of those guys could break it. Would not be shocked if 4-5 guys are under 3:41 at the games this year. Same with O’Callahan’s 52.2! McKeown’s now a contender for the gold and having 4 swimmers right there is something I’d always hope would shape up to be at the game rly looking forward to this one as I think for the winner it will take a 2:06. Low to win… Read more »

Last edited 1 month ago by PFA

About Retta Race

Retta Race

Former Masters swimmer and coach Loretta (Retta) thrives on a non-stop but productive schedule. Nowadays, that includes having just earned her MBA while working full-time in IT while owning French 75 Boutique while also providing swimming insight for BBC.

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