9 World Records Go Down at Canadian Masters’ Nationals

2019 Canadian Masters’ National Swimming Championships

A whopping 9 Masters’ swimming World Records were broken this weekend at the Canadian Masters’ National Swimming Championships in Montreal, pending ratification by FINA. Among those 9 records, 8 were set by visiting American swimmers. Ironically, most of the new World Record holders did not compete at the American version of Masters’ Nationals, where the yards-based course was not World Record eligible.

Included among the group is 65-year old Jack Groselle, who narrowly-missed the Men’s 65-69 World Record in the 100 free, by .07 seconds (58.26), in the individual event, but then swam a 57.78 on a relay leadoff. That broke the old record of 58.19 that was set by fellow American Rick Colella in 2016. Colella was a 1976 Olympic bronze medalist.

Groselle later combined with teammates Bob CouchJulianna Holbrook, and June Carson to break Masters’ World Records in both the mixed 200 free relay (2:08.18) and the mixed 400 free relay (4:44.05) for the 280-319 combined age group. That group of athletes all hail from the Sarasota Sharks Masters Team in Florida.

Also among the individual World Record breakers from the USA were IM swimmers Steven Heck and Hubie Kerns, both of whom are 70 years old.

In the 100m IM, Heck swam a 1:12.74, which broke the old World Record of 1:13.09 that was set by American Richard Abrahams in 2015. In that race, Kerns finished 2nd in 1:13.43, which was just shy of clearing the old record himself.

In the 200m IM, a total of 3 swimmers were under the old World Record. First, in heat 8, Heck swam a 2:42.00, which officially broke the mark of 2:42.44 set by New Zealander Barry Young in 2009. A heat later, Kerns (2:40.45) and fellow American 70-year old Alek Shestakov (2:41.76) were both under the newly-minted mark. Kerns touched 1st of he and Shestakov, so he’ll be the only of the pair to officially emerge with that World Record.

Another American 70-year old, Glenn Gruber, was 4th in that race in 2:52.22.

Gruber, Kerns, and Heck, all with recent birthdays, combined with Houstonian Bruce Rollins to break a pair of relay World Records as well. The group, which exactly met the minimum aggregate age standard of 280 for their records, broke both the 200 medley (2:12.29) and 400 medley (4:59.48) records.

A Canadian squad from Maitres Pointe-Claire in Montreal’s more English-leaning suburbs also joined the record-setting haul. The relay of Mae WaldieHelena LuiJudie Oliver, and Gail Whittaker combined for an 8:00.03 in the 400 medley relay. That broke the World Record for the 320-359 aggregate age group (ages 80-89 on average). The old World Record of 8:13.98 was set in 2013 by a relay from Yokohama, Japan, meaning the Pointe-Claire crew set the record by almost 14 seconds.

The 87-year old Oliver, with 9 gold medals, and the 84-year old Waldie, with 7, were among the stars of the event. 72-year old American Julianna Holbrook led all women with 11 gold medals, while 28-year old Canadian Eric Brault won 9 gold, 3 silver, and 1 bronze medal for 15 total.



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Bo Swims

Some solid swims by Greg Streppel in M50-54. Greg won the 25k at Worlds in 1994.

Gen D

Wow, I was there and didn’t even realize this had happened. Congrats! Very impressive!

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Braden Keith

Braden Keith is the Editor-in-Chief and a co-founder of SwimSwam.com. He first got his feet wet by building The Swimmers' Circle beginning in January 2010, and now comes to SwimSwam to use that experience and help build a new leader in the sport of swimming. Aside from his life on the InterWet, …

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