Aussie Age Group Standout Hauck Wins First Senior Title, Horton Places 10th


The 2019 Australian Short Course Swimming Championships kicked off in Melbourne today, with 16-year-old Thomas Hauck nailing his first-ever senior national title.

After claiming the 2nd seed of the morning heats in the men’s 400m free in a time of 3:46.69, Hauck found another gear for tonight’s final, with the All Saints swimmer firing off a new lifetime best of 3:43.38. That was enough to hold off a charging adversary in 19-year-old Brendon Smith of Nunawading, who wound up touching less than a second behind Hayuck in 3:43.85.

The bronze medalist in the race, 22-year-old visiting Malaysian national record holder Welson Sim, nearly beat out Smith, hitting the wall in 3:43.90. Sim’s time checks in as a monster new personal best, obliterating his own previous career-fastest 3:48.93 clocked at a World Cup stop 2 years ago.

Finishing well behind in 10th out of this 10-person final was Olympic champion Mack Horton, with the Melbourne Vicentre swimmer punching the clock in 3:50.76, slower than his morning effort of 3:49.02.

Going back to Hauck, the multiple Aussie age group champion’s time tonight checks-in as the 2nd fastest ever for a 16-year-old Aussie. His 3:43.38 outing resets only behind legendary Ian Thorpe‘s age record of 3:35.64 set way back in 1999.

Women’s 4x200m freestyle gold medalist at this year’s World Championships, Kiah Melverton of TSS Aquatics was in the water twice in this evening’s session. The 22-year-old first took on the 400m IM, where she clocked a time of 4:35.09 to finish with the silver behind Hunter’s Meg Bailey and her winning time of 4:29.17.

Melverton’s outing represents her personal best by about a tenth, while Bailey has never before been under the 4:35 mark. Her previous lifetime best sat at the 4:35.81 produced at the NSW Championships just last August. In fact, Bailey’s outing slides up to #2 in the all-time Aussie SCM rankings, sitting only behind Ellen Fullerton’s 4:28.72 produced in 2015.

The women’s 800m free s where Melverton upgraded to gold, clearing the field easily in a winning time of 8:15.93, another new personal best. Her time overtakes her career-quickest of 8:16.51 produced that garnered her bronze at the 2018 Short Course World Championships.

Olympian David Morgan took the men’s 200m fly title away from last year’s winner Nic BrownMorgan stopped the clock in 1:54.63 to Brown’s 1:54.87, while this year’s World Championships finalist in the 100m fly, Matthew Temple, rounded out the top 3 in 1:55.02. For perspective, Brown earned the 2018 title in a time of 1:52.29.

The women’s 100m breast was a fierce battle among the top 3, as Bond’s Jenna Strauch narrowly came out on top with a gold medal-worthy 1:06.03. 26-year-old Tessa Wallace was right behind in 1:06.36, while Swedish swimmer Jessica Eriksson slid into bronze with 1:06.64.

Although finishing off the podium, 5th place swimmer Tara Kinder, just 16, clocked 1:07.18 in the race to nail the 2nd fastest time ever by an Aussie at that age.

In Para swimming action, Monique Murphy (S10), Matt Levy (SM7), Ashleigh McConnell (S9) and Rachael Watson (S4) all surpassed world records in their respective classifications.

Murphy took the 400m free multi-class gold in a time of 4:35.52, shaving .36 off of her time set in 2015. Levy’s record came in the 200m IM multi-class race, where he claim his 3rd consecutive short course title in the event. He touched in 2:34.02 for 1006 points.

Additional Winners:

  • Visiting Olympic champion Joseph Schooling surged ahead of the Aussies to take gold in the men’s 100m free in a winning effort of 48.05, a new national record. You can read more about this event here.
  • Canberra’s Hayley Baker topped the women’s 200m backstroke podium, producing a time of 2:04.64 to beat the field by over 2 seconds.
  • Melbourne Vicentre’s Kotuku Ngawati got it done in the women’s 100m free, touching in 53.45 for the win. Of note, 17-year-old Gabriella Peiniger reaped the bronze in 54.05, a time that represents the 5th fastest ever for that age for an Aussie.
  • World University Games champion William Yang tied Bradley Woodward for 50m back gold, each touching in 23.93 as the only swimmers under 24 seconds in the race.
  • Marion’s Ellysia Oldsen edged out 16-year-old St. Peters Western swimmer Mia O’Leary for 50m fly gold. The women earned respective times of 26.62 and 26.83.
  • Sam Williamson took the Aussie national title in the men’s 50m breast in a time of 26.65.

Tomorrow’s competition brings the unique skins races. Although classified as exhibition races, the men’s and women’s freestyle skins events will put some cash up for grabs for athletes taking on the challenge. In this knockout system, 10 swimmers will compete in the 100m freestyle, with the top 4 each earning $100 and continuing on to the next round.

Those 4 will then race a 50m freestyle, with the top 2 finishers collecting $250 each and then moving on to a 25m final. The ultimate winner of that head-to-head battle earns a $1000 payday.

The Men’s skins starting line up includes:

  1. Zac Incerti – UWA West Coast, WA
  2. Will Stockwell – Rackley Swim Team, QLD
  3. Matthew Temple – Nunawading, VIC
  4. Ashton Brinkworth – UWA West Coast, WA
  5. David Morgan – TSS Aquatic, QLD
  6. William Yang – Loreto Normanhurst, NSW
  7. Mack Horton – Melbourne Vicentre, VIC
  8. Lachlan Carter – Acacia Bayside, QLD
  9. Grayson Bell – TSS Aquatic, QLD
  10. Bowen Gough, Nunawading, VIC – WILDCARD entry via peer nomination

The Women’s skins starting line up includes:

  1. Laura Taylor, TSS Aquatic, QLD
  2. Julia Hawkins, Nunawading, VIC
  3. Koti Ngawati, Melb Vicentre, VIC
  4. Olivia Lefoe, MLC Aquatic, VIC
  5. Jade Starr, Nudgee, QLD
  6. Kiah Melverton, TSS Aquatic, QLD
  7. Elyse Woods, Melb Vicentre, VIC
  8. WILDCARD – nominate now @SwimmingAustralia on Instagram
  9. WILDCARD – nominate now @SwimmingAustralia on Instagram
  10. WILDCARD – nominate now @SwimmingAustralia on Instagram

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1 year ago

What an absolutely ridiculous record that NAG is.

Coach: Fantastic swim son, that NAG only needs you to drop two seconds…

Hauck: Awesome, I think I’ve got it in me.

Coach: wait a second …each hundred. Two seconds each hundred to get the NAG.

Hauck: Oh right.

Coach: And strictly speaking you should do that in a brief, to make it fair.

Reply to  Togger
1 year ago

It’s pretty unbelievable even 20 years later. With all the enduring excitement of Phelps and beating his age group records people tend to forget how absolutely incredible Thorpe was as a teen.

1 year ago

“Finishing well behind in 10th out of this 10-person final was Olympic champion Mack Horton, with the Melbourne Vicentre swimmer punching the clock in 3:50.76, slower than his morning effort of 3:49.02.”

*Sun Yang liked that*

Sun Yangs Hammer
1 year ago

Article approved by Sun Yang

About Retta Race

Retta Race

After 16 years at a Fortune 1000 financial company, long-time swimmer Retta Race decided to change lanes and pursue her sporting passion. She currently is Coach for the Northern KY Swordfish Masters, a team she started up in December 2013, while also offering private coaching. Retta is also an MBA …

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