2024 Canadian Olympic & Paralympic Trials: Day 5 Prelims Live Recap


Day 5 Prelims Heat Sheet

Steam courtesy of CBC

Day 5 Schedule

  • Women’s Para 50 Back
  • Men’s Para 50 Back
  • Women’s Open 100 Free
  • Men’s Open 200 Back
  • Women’s 200 Breast
  • Men’s Open 200 Fly
  • Women’s Para 200 IM
  • Men’s Para 200 IM

One would expect that the absence of two household names like Summer McIntosh and Maggie MacNeil would leave a massive talent drain in the women’s 100 free, but such is the depth and strength of Canadian freestyle that their scratches will soon be forgotten. Leading the way in place of McIntosh is Mary-Sophie Harvey. Harvey, who is in the midst of a renaissance of her career, has already individually qualified to swim the 100 fly and 200 free in Paris. She’ll have her work cut out for her, though, as her entry time of 54.26 is quite a ways away from the OQT of 53.61, and she has a pack of determined swimmers behind her.

Leading that charge is national record holder Penny Oleksiak, who will be looking to get back on track after injuries have derailed the past few years. Joining Oleksiak and seeking their ticket to Paris are Taylor Ruck, Sarah Fournier, and Katerine Savard.

The men’s 200 back also saw a big scratch as Tristan Jankovics, the #3 seed, withdrew, moving up youngster Ethan Ekk into lane 4 of the first circle-seeded heats. The top seed, Hugh McNeil, is entered just .23 outside of the OQT of 1:57.50 but first needs to make the A-final safely.

Sydney Pickrem re-enters the pool this morning as the top seed in the 200 breast. After a disappointing 3rd place finish in the 100 breast, Pickrem will look to punch her ticket to Paris and represent Canada at her third Olympics. Pickrem is already under the OQT of 2:23.91 but can’t rest on her laurels as there were three swimmers in the 100 under the OQT, but all of them failed to replicate their times in finals. If Pickrem is going to be under pressure, it’ll likely come from fellow Olympian Kelsey Wog and youngster Alexanne Lepage.

After a new personal best in the 100 free yesterday, we get our first look at Ilya Kharun in his specialty: the butterfly. The Canadian record holder in the event, Kharun, is coming off of a successful NCAA campaign, which saw the freshman win the yards version of this race. Entered with a time of 1:53.82, the ASU swimmer is nearly two seconds under the OQT and more than four seconds clear of the field. Don’t expect a lot from this morning, as an A-final appearance is highly likely, but expect to see him bring the speed tonight.

The morning session is bookended by Para events. We open with the 50 back, where national record holders Nikita Ens and Sebastian Massabie lead their respective fields. Massabie has been breaking records left and right, including one new World Record, so expect to see some fast swimming from him.

We end the preliminary session on a run of 2oos, moving from the 200 back to the 200 breast to the 200 fly to end on the Para 200 IM. The women’s event will see 13 swimmers vying for 10 spots in this evening’s final. Remember that placings in multiclass para events are determined by points, not time, so swimmers in the first heat could be seeded first into tonight despite swimming more than two minutes slower.

Women’s 50 Back Para – Prelims

  • Canadian S3: 1:08.48 – Nikita Ens (2022)
  • Canadian S5: 55.91 – Alisson Gobeil (2023)

Top 3

  1. Nikita Ens S3 (LASER) – 1:12.23 (545 pts.)
  2. Aly Van Wyck-Smart S3 (WS) – 1:13.89 (517 pts.)
  3. Hannah Ouellette S5 (Laser) – (509 pts.)

It was a tight race, point-wise, but it was National Record holder Nikita Ens who took the win in 1:12.23, scoring 545 points.

Men’s 50 Back Para – Prelims

Top 1

  1. Sebastian Massabie S4 (PSW) – 53.74 (540 pts.) *** New Canadian Record***

Sebastian Massabie‘s name is soon going to be synonymous with record-breaker. The S4 athlete has done it again, erasing his national record by over a second this morning.

WOMEN’S 100 Free– Prelims

  • World Record: 51.71 – Sarah Sjostrom, SWE (2017)
  • Canadian Record: 52.59 – Penny Oleksiak (2016)
  • 2021 Champion: Penny Oleksiak – 52.89
  • OLY Qualifying/Consideration Standards: 53.61/53.88

Top 10

  1. Penny Oleksiak (TSC) – 54.12
  2. Mary-Sophie Harvey (CAMO) – 54.61
  3. Brooklyn Douthwright (CNBO) – 54.95
  4. Rebecca Smith (CASC) – 54.98
  5. Taylor Ruck (UNCAN) -55.23
  6. Sienna Angove (UNCAN) – 55.25
  7. Sarah Fournier (CNQ) – 55.27
  8. Ainsley McMurray (CSLA) – 55.45
  9. Danielle Haus (Rapid/HPCVN)/Ella Jansen (HPCON) – 55.54

Through the halfway point of one of Canada’s staple events, the early leader was Payton Kelly’s 56.61, a drop of over half a second from her seed time of 57.22 and the only swimmer under 57 so far. Kelly’s time lasted only one heat as Dylan Scholes in heat 5 produced a 56.35, taking it out in a speedy 27.01.

With the scratch of Summer McIntosh, Olympian Taylor Ruck took the middle lane in the first of the three circle-seeded heats. Ruck won the heat in 55.23, but it was a tight affair. Ruck led at the 50, flipping in 26.27 ahead of Katerine Savard‘s 26.49. Ella Jansen made a move in the last 50, passing Savard to finish 2nd in 55.54, just ahead of Savard’s 55.58.

The 7th heat was a faster affair as the most decorated Olympian in Canadian history, Penny Oleksiak, touched first in 54.12. The 2016 co-gold medalist in this event was out fast, splitting 26.03 and led Rebecca Smith by .44. Oleksiak built upon that lead to finish ahead of Smith by nearly a full second, with Smith hitting the wall in 54.98. Sienna Angove, who has been having a strong meet, used a strong back half to nab third in the heat in 55.25.

The final heat saw Mary-Sophie Harvey employ her traditional strategy of back-halfing the race. Harvey was out in just 26.75, ranking 4th at the 50-turn, but came from in 27.86 to take the heat win in a time of 54.61. Brooklyn Douthwright, who trains with the University of Tennessee, had a strong showing this morning to touch 2nd in the head in a time of 54.95.

Katerine Savard, a long-time member of Team Canada, finished 11th overall, and unless there is a scratch will unlikely make the trip to Paris unless she improves upon her #6 seed in the 50 free.

Men’s 200 Backstroke – Prelims

  • World Record: 1:51.92 – Aaron Piersol, USA (2009)
  • Canadian Record: 1:56.96 – Markus Thormeyer (2017)
  • 2021 Champion: Cole Pratt – 1:58.11
  • OLY Qualifying/Consideration Standards: 1:57.50/1:58.09

Top 10

  1. Aiden Norman (UCSC) – 1:58.30
  2. Ethan Ekk (UNCAN) – 1:59.68
  3. Blake Tierney (GOLD/HPCVN) – 1:59.71
  4. Hugh McNeill (UBCT/LOSC) – 2:00.04
  5. Raben Dommann (HPCVN) – 2:00.49
  6. Loic Courville Fortin (CAMO) – 2:01.71
  7. Cole Pratt (CASC) – 2:01.92
  8. Parker Lenoce (UNCAN) – 2:02.38
  9. Thomas Caruso (SPART/SFU) – 2:04.43
  10. Brendan Oswald (WAC) – 2:04.55

Lane 8 was the site of some outside smoke as Paul Orogo posted the fastest time of the morning so far out of Heat 3. He hit the wall in 2:06.38, using a strong backhalf to pull himself in first place. The time represents a massive drop from his seed time, as he lopped off nearly three full seconds.

Ethan Ekk, who benefited from a scratch to move into lane 4, posted the first time under 2:00 this morning, as he hit the wall in 1:59.68. Out in 58.95, Ekk looked smooth and controlled as he pulled away from Parker Lenoce, who was close at the 100 (59.08) but faded in the end to finish over two seconds behind in a time of 2:02.38.

The winner of the 100-back, Blake Tierney, showed off his speed, taking the race out in a very fast 57.36. Tierney, who had already punched his ticket to Paris, started to slow on the last 100 as he came home in 1:02.35 to finish just behind Ekk’s time in 1:59.71. Whether the slowdown was intentional or if he ran out of steam remains to be seen, but his time sits 2nd with one heat remaining, so he should safely move on. Raben Dommann was close to two seconds behind at the 100, flipping in 59.05, but came home fast to finish 2nd in 2:00.49.

There was some drama in the last heat as Aiden Norman stormed out to a strong lead and was close to rattling the record. While slower than Tierney at the 100, with Norman flipping on 57.57, the UCSC swimmer kept his foot on the gas and was over a second faster at the 150 mark than Tierney. Norman, who was chasing 1:56.96, started to fatigue as his last two 50 splits were 29.60 and 31.23. Norman’s time of 1:58.30 surpassed Ekk’s and will give him lane 4 tonight. Top seed Hugh McNeil swam a steady race and was behind Norman in the heat, finishing 2nd. Tokyo Olympian Cole Pratt has been under the radar this week and finished 4th in the heat in a time of 2:01.92.

Women’s 200 Breaststroke– Prelims

  • World Record: 2:17.55 – Evgeniia Chikunova, RUS (2023)
  • Canadian Record: 2:20.12 – Annamay Pierse (2009)
  • 2021 Champion: Kelsey Smith – 2:23.40
  • OLY Qualifying/Consideration Standards: 2:23.91/2:24.63

Top 10

  1. Kelsey Wog (UMAN) – 2:23.71 OQT
  2. Sydney Pickrem (TSC) – 2:28.06
  3. Alexanne Lepage (UCSC) – 2:28.52
  4. Sophie Angus (HPCON) – 2:28.65
  5. Avery Wiseman (OSC) – 2:29.20
  6. Katja Pavicevic (TSC) – 2:29.72
  7. Tessa Cieplucha (MAC) – 2:30.24
  8. Kamila Blanchard (PCSC) – 2:32.22
  9. Shima Taghavi (HYACK) – 2:33.19
  10. Amaris Peng (UBCT/LAC) – 2:33.50

Bryony Kennett, who often appears as Bobbi Kennett, has the fastest time of the morning so far, with only the circle-seeded heats remaining. Kennett, who swims with Texas A&M, posted a time of 2:37.05 and is the only swimmer under 2:38.00.

Looking to redeem herself from her disappointing 5th place finish in the 100 on Day 2, Alexanne Lepage posted a speedy 2:28.52 in the first of three circle-seeded heat. Lepage was out in 1:11.79 and was sitting in second to Katja Pavicevic at the 150 mark but surged to the win by over a second.

Kelsey Wog, like Lepage, had a disappointing 100 breast. While finishing 2nd, she was outside of the Olympic Qualifying Time and thus not named to the team. Wog, who swam this event in Tokyo, was out like a bat. Wog (so far) is the only swimmer under 33 at the 50 (32.64) and the only swimmer under 1:11 at the 100 (1:08.69). Wog kept up the pace over the back 100 to hit the wall in 2:23.71. That time is not only a drop of over half a second from her seed but under the OQT of 2:23.91.

Sydney Pickrem, the top seed, opted not to follow in Wog’s footsteps. Out in 33.50 and 1:11.05 at the 100, the two-time Olympian cruised her way to the 2nd overall seed in a time of 2:28.06, more than four seconds back of Wog. Pickrem, who recently won the bronze medal in Doha in 2:22.94, looked smooth and controlled and should have plenty left for tonight.

The winner of the 100 on Day 2 and the only swimmer qualified for Paris so far, Sophie Angue was shadowing Pickrem the entire race and finished just a little behind in 2:28.65.

Men’s 200 Butterfly – Prelims

  • World Record: 1:50.34 – Kristof Milak, HUN (2022)
  • Canadian Record: 1:53.82 – Ilya Kharun (2023)
  • 2021 Champion: Mack Darragh – 1:58.10
  • OLY Qualifying/Consideration Standards: 1:55.78/1:56.36

Top 10

  1. Ilya Kharun (UNCAN) – 1:55.79
  2. Max Malakhovets (ESWIM/HPCON) – 1:59.55
  3. Kevin Zhang (WAT) – 1:59.72
  4. Sebastian Lunak (UNC) – 1:59.75 International Athlete
  5. Bill Dongfang (ISC) – 2:00.60
  6. Benjamin Loewen (CREST) – 2:00.63
  7. Patrick Hussey (PCSC) – 2:00.78
  8. Michael Andrew Sava (RAMAC) – 2:01.46
  9. Jordi Vilchez (BTSC) – 2:02.03
  10. Hayden Ghufran (UNCAN) – 2:02.23
  11. Harrison Smith (UNCAN) – 2:03.23

Making up over a second differential on the last 50, Max Malakhovets claimed the fastest time of the morning out of the first of the circle-seeded heats. At the 150, Malakhovets was 1:27.86 to Czech swimmer Sebastian Lunak’s 1:26.61 but surged to the win in 1:59.55, .20 ahead of Lunak’s 1:59.75. Malakhovets entered the meet with a time of 2:00.01, so getting under 2:00 was a large accomplishment.

Heat 4 of 5 was very much a sequel to the first heat. Patrick Hussey, who placed 2nd in the 200 free, was over a second ahead at the 150 mark, hitting the wall in 1:27.39 as compared to Benjamin Loewen’s 1:28.78. But the younger of the two, Loewen, used the same strategy as Malakhovets to move past Hussey and take the heat in 2:00.63, just ahead of Hussey’s 2:00.78.

The last heat showed why Ilya Kharun is a star in Canadian swimming. Kharun, the NCAA 200-yard fly winner, started in a speedy 25.57 and kept up the speed, hitting the 100 wall in 55.20 and the 200 wall in 1:25.42. Kevin Zhang tried to do his best to stay close to the ASU star, as he was about a second back at the 100 (56.32) and two back at the 150 (1:27.71), but just could hang with the experienced Kharun, ultimately finishing close to four seconds back with a time of 1:59.72 as compared to Kharun’s 1:55.79. Kharun’s time was just .01 off the OQT but has an entry time well under that mark.

Women’s 200 IM Para – Prelims

  • Canadian SM5: 4:30.46 – Jessica Tinney (2024)
  • Canadian SM7: 2:56.98 – Tess Routliffe (2024
  • Canadian SM9: 2:37.54 – Stephanie Dixon (2008)
  • Canadian SM10: 2:28.73 – Aurelie Rivard (2021)
  • Canadian SM13: 2:27.64 – Valerie Grand’Maison (2012)
  • Canadian SM14: 2:36.48 – Angela Marina (2022)

Top 10

  1. Tess Routliffe SM7 (UL) – 2:57.82 (979 pts.)
  2. Danielle Dorris SM7 (CNBO) – 3:04.12 (896 pts.)
  3. Jaime Cosgriffe SM10 (OAK) – 2:36.72 (843 pts.)
  4. Mary Jibb SM9 (MUSAC) – 2:45.70 (827 pts.)
  5. Katarina Roxon SM9 (AASC) – 2:49.06 (784 pts.)
  6. Maxine Lavitt SM13 (UMAN) – 2:38.75 (773 pts.)
  7. Tan Yang SM7 (OAK) – 3:18.71 (738 pts.) International Athlete
  8. Angela Marina SM14 (BRANT) – 2:39.51 (735 pts.)
  9. Hannah Ouellette SM5 (LASER) – 4:23.06 (549 pts.) ***SM5 National Record***
  10. Ella Tucker SM5 (MTA) – 4:25.10 (539 pts.)
  11. Clemence Pare SM5 (SAMAK) – 4:28.06 (524 pts.)

The first heat saw Ella Tucker swim to a new personal best and national record in the SM5 category. She hit the wall in 4:25.10, dropping a staggering 16 seconds from her seed time of 4:41.36. Her time atop the record board was short-lived, however, as in the next heat, Hannah Ouelette surpassed Tucker, posting a faster time of 4:23.06.

Men’s 200 IM Para – Prelims

  • Canadian SM7: 2:48.19 – Jean-Michael Lavalliere (2015)
  • Canadian SM8: 2:34.03 – Phillippe Vachon (2018)
  • Canadian SM10: 2:10.01 – Benoit Huot (2012)
  • Canadian SM14: 2:07.95 – Nicholas Bennett (2023)

Top 10

  1. Nicholas Bennett SM14 (RDCSC) – 2:07.69 (1036 pts.) ***SM14 National Record***
  2. Reid Maxwell SM8 (EKSC) – 2:34.49 (801 pts.)
  3. Alexander Elliot SM10 (CNQ) – 2:20.04 (773 pts.)
  4. Charles Giammichele SM7 (GHAC) – 2:49.32 (751 pts.)
  5. Fernando Lu SM10 (LOSC) – 2:25.07 (704 pts.)
  6. Zach Zona SM8 (NHAC) – 2:43.07 (696 pts.)

Make that back to back to back heats with new records as Nicholas Bennett kept up his assault on the record board as he posted a new personal best and new national record in the SM14 category, hitting the wall in 2:07.69. Bennett has consistently been putting himself in a good position to make the Para team, scoring 1036 points in this prelim swim.

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1 month ago

What happened to Richie Stokes? Wasn’t he our second fastest 200 backstroker after Hugh?

Reply to  SwimSwum
1 month ago

He retired after USports

Bo Swims
Reply to  SwimSwum
1 month ago

Aiden’s hungry 🦖🐊

1 month ago

Thought Macneil would be swimming 100fr. Kinda surprised she seems content with her entire Olympic schedule being 100fl and 4x100medley. They might consider using her on the 4x100fr, but I thought she’d at least put up a time today.

Last edited 1 month ago by MTK
Reply to  MTK
1 month ago

Yeah it’s odd. So 100 fly is the only event she’s swimming at trials? She could have swam today and had absolutely nothing to lose

Reply to  Sub13
1 month ago

I think her decision (along with Summer) was made to get more relay swimmers qualified. Brosseau, O’Croinin, Angus, Knox, Axon, Hussey, Wiggington, and Bagshaw leaves four more spots for relay selections. Seeing that both medleys are currently covered bar the men’s fly winner (Liendo is already individually qualified and wouldn’t count anyways) and the women’s free winner (a prelims spot that will go to Summer in finals anyways and could be an individual qualifier anyways), there’s a chance that they are going all in on the women’s 4×100 for the final spots. Even if the whole relay ended up being relay only qualifiers, they’d still be within the quota. Knowing Maggie and Summer can swim finals means they open opportunities… Read more »

Reply to  cheese
1 month ago

Yeah I actually came to the same conclusion after I posted this. I think you’re right

"we've got a boiler!"
Reply to  cheese
1 month ago

This strategy may work for the W 4×1 with enough depth from the 5th 6th, or even 7th fastest 100 Freestylers, but they can’t 100% tied to this as there is a risk of being on outside looking in if even one is ‘off’ for a prelims swim. They don’t quite have the risk-free depth that the Aussies or US does.
Where this really stands out is the M 4×2. If they are simply giving the top 4 the reigns to race in Paris and do the best they can while saving Liendo, Acevedo, Knox etc for the 4×1 and Medley’s, then fair enough. That will be a huge ask to get to finals. However if the above mentioned… Read more »

1 month ago

Great swim from Brooklyn Doughwright! Hoping her momentum continues tonight!!

Anything but 50 BR
1 month ago

1:53 low tonight for a NR!

Reply to  Anything but 50 BR
1 month ago

Not happening dude

Boxall's Railing
1 month ago

I might have missed…why didn’t Maggie swim the 100 free?

Beginner Swimmer at 25
1 month ago

Penny is back LFG 💰

Pacific Whirl
1 month ago

CA women can win medals in all three relays two months later.

Reply to  Pacific Whirl
1 month ago

But they are not favorite in any of them
4th Best in 4×200 free and 4×100 medley
on 4×100 free I would rate GBR ahead, and CAN on SWE and NED level..

Daddy Foster
Reply to  Rafael
1 month ago

Maggie-Summer-MSH-Penny would be the favourite against GBR for sure. They’ll probably average about 53.0 for all four legs

Reply to  Daddy Foster
1 month ago

Show your reasoning? Penny is the only one of those 4 who has been at or below 53.0. You’d be better off including Ruck who split a 52 in Doha

Reply to  Daddy Foster
1 month ago

The current can rec is 3:32.15. An average of about 53.04. Based on current form if the race was held today that would seem highly unlikely. It’s not to say it couldn’t happen in paris given there are 2 months to go. But to get a medal they will likely have to go at least that fast to get past China for bronze. China’s record is almost the same as Canada’s and currently their top 4 have significantly faster flat times than ours. But as always medals are won in the pool & not on paper.

Pacific Whirl
Reply to  Rafael
1 month ago

Sorry to interrupt you, but GB has zero chance in beating CA or CN in these free relays.

Last edited 1 month ago by Pacific Whirl
Reply to  Pacific Whirl
1 month ago

I never said gbr would beat china
And only said gbr could beat can on 4×100…

Reply to  Pacific Whirl
1 month ago

It’s never 0 chance. It may be highly unlikely but there are no certainties. That’s why you race in the pool & not on paper. However GB chances for a high placement in either of the relays would seem to depend on a large part of full recovery of one of their best freestylers Freya Anderson. She only did the 100fr at their trials to prove basic fitness but if she has fully recovered then I would expect GB to do well in both free relays.

Reply to  Pacific Whirl
1 month ago

I wish this were the case, but they will have a very tough time beating AUS, US or China in any of the relays. Not impossible, but not very likely to medal.

Reply to  Pacific Whirl
1 month ago

Going to be a tough haul. I suspect it’s more likely that they will be off the relay podiums this time.

1 month ago

Wog not messing around this morning. At least now with the OQT in hand she ‘just’ has to finish in the top 2 tonight. But hopefully she can even swim faster tonight.