Ashby & Fairweather Among Day 4 Winners At New Zealand Open C’ships


In addition to the monster swim posted by 16-year-old Michael Pickett en route to silver behind Daniel Hunter in the men’s 50m freestyle, several other New Zealand stars made their marks on night 4 of the 2019 Open Championships.

In the aforementioned race, Hunter took the gold in 22.27, just .07 ahead of teen Pickett’s mark of 22.34. For Pickett, he dips under the NZ development consideration time for next month’s World Championships and also represents a new New Zealand 16 Years Age Record. You can read more about his impressive outing here.

As for Hunter, his name is still on the World Championships list as a member of the men’s 4x200m free relay, along with Lewis Clareburt, Mathew Stanley and Zac Reid.

Another teen in the form of 15-year-old Erika Fairweather did additional damage tonight, as she doubled up on her 400m free gold medal with an additional gold in the 200m free. Entering these championships, the Neptune Swim Club athlete’s personal best rested right at the 2:00 threshold with the 2:00.01 notched at the NZ Age Championships this past April.

However, splitting 59.01/1:00.36, Fairweather posted a gold medal-winning effort of 1:59.37 to represent the only finalist under the 2:00 mak tonight. Her time also dips under the 1:59.85 development consideration time for next month’s World Championships as well as a New Zealand 15 Years Age Record.

Sophie Pascoe (QEII) produced another World Para Swimming World Record, this time in the heats of the women’s S9 100m fly. She clocked a morning effort of 1:04.87. but laid waste to that outing come the final, reaping gold in an even lower 1:02.48.

23-year-old Bradlee Ashby of North Shore got under the 2:00 threshold in the men’s 200m IM for gold, registering a winning effort of 1:59.60. That not only topped the field, with the next closest competitor represented by Luan Grobbelaar‘s 2:02.69, but Ashby’s effort also got under the FINA A cut of 2:00.22. His time tonight also checks-in as the 4th fastest of the veteran’s career.

Additional Winners:

  • Helena Gasson took the women’s 100m fly in 1:00.56, despite having been 59.90 in the morning heats.
  • The men’s 50m back saw 19-year-old Andrew Jeffcoat hit the wall in 25.36, a full second ahead of his previous personal best of 26.38 from the 2018 Oceanic Championships.
  • 18-year-old Gina Galloway topped the women’s 50m back field to collect another gold on top of her 100m back win. Galloway touched in 28.88 with 19-year-old Gabrielle Fa’amausili next in 2900.
  • Northwave Swim Club’s Ciara Smith18, won the women’s 200m breast in a time of 2:32.92 with 14-year-old Melissa Cowen coming in with the silver in 2:34.54.



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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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