With the first day of the BHP Billiton Super Series in the books the Australians hold a comfortable lead over Japan in the overall points race. The standings after the first day of competition are as follows:
- Australia – 327pts
- Japan – 259 pts
- China – 205 pts
- South Africa – 163 pts
- Brazil – 108 pts
The home town Aussies were victorious in 11 of the 14 events on the first day in Perth.
The most predictable result of the first day was that there would be a world record set in the mixed 4 x 100 medley relay, simply because one did not exist. The Australians took the event with relative ease winning in a time of 4:46.52. The Australian team was made up of Ashley Delany (54.67), Daniel Tranter (1:01.48), Alicia Coutts (57.40) and Emma McKeon (52.97).
Mckeon’s anchor swim was a fantastic time for her considering that her lifetime best in the 100 freestyle is a 54.11.
The Chinese finished second nearly three seconds behind in a time of 3:49.40, followed by the Japanese who touched in third in a time of 3:53.79.
In the men’s 100 freestyle James Magnussen put up his third sub-48 time of the season winning the event in a time of 47.59. Magnussen’s time this evening was his season’s best beating the 47.73 he recorded at the Victorian State Championships and the 47.97 that he put up at the WA State Championships. The time is also just off his 2013 season’s best of 47.53 which she swam at the World Championship Trials last summer.
His 47.59 marks the 14th time that Magnussen has gone under the 48 second barrier.
Fellow Australian Cameron McEvoy finished second in a time of 48.19 followed by Ning Zetao of China who posted a time of 48.41.
On the women’s side Australian World Champion Cate Campbell took the 100 freestyle easily, beating her sister by almost a full second hitting the wall in a time of 53.08. Campbell had a phenomenal year in 2013 winning the 100 freestyle in Barcelona in a time of 52.33, she looks to be on her way to an even stronger season considering that she won the same event at the 2013 Super Series in a time of 53.51.
Bronte Campbell finished second in a time of 53.98, just off her lifetime best of 53.72. Karin Prinsloo of South Africa finished third in a time of 54.48, breaking her own African record of 54.97, which she posted at the 2012 British Gas Championships.
The men’s 200 butterfly looked to be a compelling race with two 2013 World Champions hitting the water. 400 IM World Champion Daiya Seto of Japan faced off against 100 and 200 butterfly World Champion South African Chad le Clos for the event title. Seto took the race out in a pace that le Clos could not match eventually beating the South African by over one and a half seconds recording a lifetime best of 1:54.82.
le Clos finished second in a time of 1:56.45 holding off the late charge of Yuki Kobori who finished third recording a time of 1:56.85.
- Seto – 25.93/55.36 (29.43)/1:24.70 (29.34)/1:54.82 (30.12)
- le Clos – 26.43/56.76 (30.33)/1:26.88 (30.12)/1:56.45 (29.57)
- Kobori – 26.78/57.43 (30.65)/1:27.57 (30.14)/1:56.85 (29.28)
Olympic gold medalist Ye Shiwen, who after having a very disappointing 2013 started 2014 off with a victory in the 200 IM posting a time of 2:10.49, which is almost a full second slower than she recorded at this meet a year ago. Olympic silver medalist Australian Alicia Coutts finished second in a time of 2:12.43 followed by Miyu Otsuka of Japan who recorded a time of 2:13.31.
In the men’s event World Championships silver medalist Kosuke Hagino of Japan just missed his lifetime best of 1:55.74 winning the event with ease, hitting the wall in a time of 1:55.90. Daiya Seto, who had an incredible race in the 200 butterfly two events earlier, could not muster up the energy to challenge his teammate finishing well behind with a time of 1:58.12. Australian Daniel Tranter finished third in a time of 2:00.27.
Australian World Championships silver medalist Belinda Hocking destroyed the field in the women’s 200 backstroke winning the event in a time of 2:07.42. Hocking’s time is less than a second off her 2013 season’s best of 2:06.66 and over three seconds faster than the 2:10.75 which she posted at this event last year.
Sayaka Akase of Japan finished second in a time of 2:09.88 followed by Australian Emily Seebhom who recorded a time of 2:10.11.
In the men’s 200 backstroke Olympic silver medalist Ryosuke Irie of Japan took the event in a time of 1:56.40 followed by 18 year old Xu Jiayu of China who finished second in a time of 1:57.21. Australian Matson Lawson finished third in a time of 1:57.77.
In one of the more exciting races of the evening Bronte Barratt took the women’s 400 freestyle in a time of 4:07.44. Barratt was challenge by both teammate Kylie Palmer and South African Karin Prinsloo. Palmer led at the 200 meter mark, but with 50 meters left to go the three women were only separated by six tenths of a second. Barratt got her hand on the wall first followed by Prinsloo who finished second in a time of 4:07.92 while Palmer finished third posting a time of 4:08.67.
- Barratt – 29.29/1:00.31 (31.02)/1:32.35 (32.04)/ 2:04.01 (31.66)/2:35.67 (31.66)/ 3:06.65 (30.98)/ 3:37.75 (31.10)/ 4:07.44 (29.69)
- Prinsloo – 29.12/1:00.64 (31.52)/1:32.20 (31.56)/ 2:04.27 (32.07)/2:35.93 (31.66)/ 3:07.45 (31.52)/ 3:38.35 (30.90)/ 4:07.92 (29.57)
- Palmer – 29.05/ 1:00.57 (31.52)/1:32.00 (31.43)/ 2:03.86 (31.86)/2:35.22 (31.36)/ 3:06.82 (31.60)/3:37.91 (31.09)/4:08.67 (30.76)
For the second time in the evening Prinsloo set a new African record this time beating Wendy Trott‘s 2008 mark of 4:08.38.
It was just a week ago where we saw an incredible battle between Madeline Groves and Ellen Gandy for the victory in the 200 butterfly at the Victorian State Championships, this evening the two battled for the crown once again. Groves, who posted a 2:06.90 in Melbourne, took an early lead and held off both Gandy and Natsumi Hoshi of Japan in the final 100 meters to win the event in a time of 2:07.03.
Gandy made a push at the 100 meter mark, making up ground turning 17 one-hundredths of a second behind Groves, but did not have enough to stay with the leader or hold off Hoshi who swam a 32.65 in the final 50 meters almost a second and a half faster than Gandy.
Hoshi finished second in a time of 2:07.83 followed by Gandy who finished third recording a time of 2:08.03.
17 year old Australian Mack Horton had an impressive swim taking the men’s 400 freestyle in a time of 3:47.98, only 86 one-hundredths of second off his lifetime best of 3:47.12. Horton and teammate David Mckeon battled the entire way with Mckeon finishing in a time of 3:48.07, nine one-hundredths of a second behind Horton.
Myles Brown of South Africa finished third in a time of 3:50.54.
Australian Sally Hunter won the women’s 100 breaststroke in a time of 1:08.00 eight one-hundredths of a second ahead of teammate Leiston Pickett who posted a time of 1:08.08. Mio Motegi of Japan finished third posting a time of 1:08.66.
Yasuhir Koseki of Japan was the only man to break the one minute mark in the 100 breaststroke winning the event in a time of 59.94. Australian World Champion Christian Sprenger finished second in a time of 1:00.36 followed by Felipe Lima of Brazil who finished third recording a time of 1:01.47.
Alicia Coutts took the women’s 50 butterfly in a time of 26.35 followed by Lu Ying of China who finished second posting a time of 26.59. Ellen Gandy collected her second bronze of the evening finishing in a time of 27.03.
Nicholas Santos was the only Brazilian to win an event on the first evening of competition taking the men’s 50 butterfly in a time of 23.61. Australian Ben Treffers finished second in a time of 23.99 followed by teammate Christopher Wright who posted a time of 24.06.
Fu Yuanhui of China won the women’s 50 backstroke in a time of 27.91 followed by Emily Seebhom who recorded a time of 28.36. Sayaka Akase of Japan finished third in a time of 28.91.
Ben Treffers took the men’s 50 backstroke in a time of 25.14 three one hundredths of a second ahead of Kosuke Hagino. Ryosuke Irie finished third in a time of 25.42.
The Australian women’s demolished their competition in the women’s 4 x 200 freestyle relay. The team made up of Emma Mckeon (1:56.64), Bronte Barratt (1:58.92), Madeline Groves (2:00.84) and Kylie Palmer (1:59.42) finished in a time of 7:55.82, 13 seconds ahead of the Japanese (8:09.48) and 20 seconds ahead of the South Africans (8:16.68).
The Japanese men took the 4 x 200 freestyle in a time of 7:09.81. The team consisting of Kosuke Hagino (1:46.11), Syo Stodake (1:49.65), Yuki Kobori (1:47.26) and Takeshi Matsuda (1:46.79) finished over five seconds ahead of the Australians (7:15.31) and just under 10 seconds ahead of the Chinese (7:19.17).
Full results can be found here