Aimee Canny Produces 1:56.80 200 Free African Record, Qualifies For Paris


20-year-old Aimee Canny came oh-so-close to Olympic qualification in the individual women’s 200m free event on night 3 of the 2024 South African National Championships.

Her winning time of 1:57.39 to grab gold checked in as a lifetime best, overwriting the 1:57.82 she scored at the 2023 edition of this competition. It fell just painstakingly shy of the 1:57.26 World Aquatics Olympic Qualification Time (‘A’ cut) needed for Paris 2024.

However, the University of Virginia swimmer made it happen tonight, firing off a big-time 1:56.80 as lead-off on the Western Cap Aquatics’ women’s 4x200m free relay.

Canny powered her way to splits of 27.52/29.46/30.08./29.74 to rip the first-ever sub-1:57 time of her career and the only sub-1:57 result ever performed by an African female.

Her time outperformed the previous South African national standard of 1:57.17 retired Karin Prinsloo put on the books nearly a decade ago in 2014.

Additionally, her time beat the African continental record of 1:57.04 Olympic medalist Kirsty Coventry of Zimbabwe established in 2008.

On her performance this evening, Canny said, “I don’t think I have the words right now to describe it. I’m super-happy with that swim. It was just a great swim… It’s pretty surreal right now.

“It’s something I’ve been practising and training for this moment so it’s so weird that it’s come true.”

On bouncing back from original disappointment, Canny said,  “I had a good day to just process everything and then I was like, I’m ready, I want to go again.”

She’ll be contesting the 200m IM on tomorrow, the final day of competition. Canny owns a lifetime best of 2:12.91 in the race and will be hunting the 2:1.47 QT.

Quotes courtesy of South African Swimming.

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Ranger Coach
2 months ago

I think there is a digit missing in the IM qualifying time standard.
2 months ago

200IM is going to be a shock for a few… she did a 1:08 in the 100 breast heats

2 months ago

Wahoo Faithful knew you could do it! I’m smiling from ear to ear.

2 months ago

congrats aimee
get after that 200IM in finals tomorrow!

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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