Aussie Trials Day 3: Teens Reign, As Titmus & McKeown Show Up Stars

2018 AUSTRALIAN SWIMMING TRIALS

Day 1 Prelims Recap/Day 1 Finals Recap

Day 2 Prelims Recap/Day 2 Finals Recap

Day 3 Prelims Recap

WOMEN’S 100 FLY (FINAL)

  • Australian National Record – 56.18, Emma McKeon, 2017
  • ‘A’ Cut – 57.64
  • ‘B’ Cut – 58.48
  • GOLD – EMMA MCKEON, 57.13
  • SILVER – BRIANNA THROSSELL, 57.42
  • BRONZE – MADDIE GROVES, 58.45

A trio of Olympians topped the women’s 100m butterfly final, led by triple medalist already here at these championships, Emma McKeon. Kicking off her night with a swift 26.59 opening 50, the Michael Bohl-trained athlete closed in a solid 30.54 to remain in front of the pack with a solid gold medal-garnering effort of 57.13.

She was 57.94 this morning to earn the only sub-58 second outing of the prelim and tonight just one other swimmer joined McKeon in that territory in Brianna Throssell. Disappointed with coming up short in Commonwealth Games qualification in her signature 200m fly event, the race in which she finaled at the Rio Olympic Games, Throssell surprised with a 100m freestyle best time finish that should qualify her for the women’s 4×100 free relay.

Tonight Throssell split 26.90/30.52 to come within half a second of McKeon and clock a final 100m fly time of 57.42. That’s a significant lifetime best, as the Western Australian’s career fastest entering this meet was the 58.07 she threw down at the Aussie Championships back in 2016.

Both McKeon and Throssell landed among the world’s top 5 in the event this season, with McKeon as #2 and Throssell as #4.

2017-2018 LCM WOMEN 100 FLY

RikakoJPN
IKEE
08/11
56.08
2Sarah
SJOESTROEM
SWE56.1308/04
3Kelsi
DAHLIA
USA56.4408/11
4Emma
McKEON
AUS56.5408/11
5Madeline
GROVES
AUS57.1904/06
View Top 26»

In a valiant effort, Olympic silver medalist Maddie Groves did her best to stay with the leaders, ultimately touching in 58.45 for the bronze. Groves finished 5th in the 200m fly, the event in which she earned a silver medal in Rio, but has been off and on training for the past year as she dealt with the blow-back of missing 3 doping tests within a 12-month period. Not being in peak shape and still snagging a medal may provide small consolation, but she did clear the B cut to be under consideration for a possible 3rd spot on the Commonwealth Games roster given her performance history.

MEN’S 200 BACK (FINAL)

  • Australian National Record – 1:53.17, Mitch Larkin, 2015
  • ‘A’ Cut – 1:56.11
  • ‘B’ Cut -1:58.55
  • GOLD – MITCH LARKIN, 1:56.60
  • SILVER – BRADLEY WOODWARD, 1:57.05
  • BRONZE – JOSH BEAVER, 1:58.11

National record holder Mitch Larkin did enough to get the gold in the men’s 200m backstroke with his winning mark of 1:56.60, but the 24-year-old is still figuring out how to manage his newfound 200m back/200m IM double. Larkin split this race smartly, maintaining 29.30/29.94/30.53 after his opening 50 of 26.83 and ultimately his 1:56.60 fell just shy of the 1:56.11 QT. Having already nabbed a roster slot with the 100m back, Larkin can be pretty confident this event will also be on his plate come April.

19-year-old Bradley Woodward of Mingara Aquatic kept pace with Larkin the entire race, touching less than a half a second back in 1:57.05. That’s a monster lifetime best for Woodward, who had never dipped under the 2-minute barrier save for this morning’s 1:59.05 prelim effort. He hacked exactly 2 additional seconds off of his AM performance to notch a new PB of 1:57.05 and possibly be in consideration for a Commonwealth Games nod after crushing the B standard.

Bronze tonight went to veteran racer Josh Beaver, who finished in 1:58.11 after starting out with a sluggish 28.00 opening 50. He closed in the only sub-30 split of the entire field, but it wasn’t enough to catch the top 2 and the Northcote athlete had to settle for bronze.

Of note, 19-year-old Jack Cartwright finished a disappointing 8th in 2:03.08, but is lucky to even be swimming the race. Cartwright claimed 100m freestyle silver behind Kyle Chalmers on night 1, but after a missed 200m free it was revealed the 19-year-old suffers from the same supraventricular tachycardia situation as his sprint rival Chalmers.

After a mild cardiac episode after the 200m free, Cartwright was cleared to compete in the 100m and this 200m back.

WOMEN’S 50 BREAST (FINAL)

  • Australian National Record – 30.16, Sarah Katsoulis, 2009
  • ‘A’ Cut – 30.49
  • ‘B’ Cut – 31.22
  • GOLD – LEISTON PICKET, 30.60
  • SILVER – JESSICA HANSEN, 30.77
  • BRONZE – GEORGIA BOHL, 31.00

Leiston Pickett and one of her close domestic rivals, Jessica Hansen, engaged in heated battle once again at these championships. In the women’s splash n’ dash breaststroke, it was Pickett who wound up on top, producing a winning time of 30.60 to Hansen’s 30.77 to give the girls gold and silver.

The women’s 100m breast winner here in Southport, Georgia Bohl, ended up on the podium again here, collecting bronze in 31.00.

Southport Olympic’s Chelsea Hodges, just 16, put forth a solid showing to finish 4th overall in a time of 31.28. Hodges nabbed a morning time of 31.36 to already obtain a new personal best, beating the 31.78 she clocked at the World Junior Championships in Indy last summer. She found another level to slice .08 off of that morning mark to reach yet a new PB.

MEN’S 50 BREAST (FINAL)

  • Australian National Record – 26.74, Christian Sprenger, 2014
  • ‘A’ Cut – 26.96
  • ‘B’ Cut – 27.51
  • GOLD – JAKE PACKARD, 27.33
  • SILVER – JAMES MCKECHNIE, 27.35
  • BRONZE – TOMMY SUCIPTO, 27.59

The men’s 50m breaststroke was a true nail biter, with the gold and silver medal finishers touching just .02 apart at the end. 100m breaststroke title winner Jake Packard charged to the wall first in 27.33, just .04 slower than his morning time, to just beat out 22-year-old James McKechnie‘s time of 27.35.

McKechnie entered tonight’s race as the top seed, crushing a 27.02 this morning to fall within .06 of the 26.96 A standard. A much slower reaction time (.71) than Packard (.63) may have proven to be the difference, but Tommy Sucipto had the fastest reaction off the block of the entire field (.58).

Sucipto maintained his speed for a bronze medal, stopping the clock in 27.59 to stand on the podium.

WOMEN’S 200 IM (FINAL)

  • Australian National Record – 2:07.03, Stephanie Rice, 2009
  • ‘A’ Cut – 2:10.45
  • ‘B’ Cut – 2:13.41
  • GOLD – BLAIR EVANS, 2:12.81
  • SILVER – TAYLOR MCKEOWN, 2:13.55
  • BRONZE – MEG BAILEY, 2:13.73

With 200m IM rock star Emily Seebohm opting out of this event for these Trials, the nation of Australia is in need of a reliable, consistent 200m IMer to represent the green and gold at its home Games. Young Kaylee McKeown seems primed potential 400m IM stardom, but the 200m sprint is seeking a swimmer to break through and snag the A cut.

Meg Bailey put her hat in the ring for the win early, taking this morning’s top seed in a huge personal best of 2:13.28. Tonight the 21-year-old was just off that performance, reaping bronze in a time of 2:13.73, a mark over the B standard.

Winning was veteran racer Blair Evans of Western Australia, dropping almost a second off her morning swim to collect gold in 2:12.81. A solid swim for Evans, but over 2 seconds away from the A standard. She may get a chance to swim this on the Gold Coast come April provided she nails a roster spot in the 400m IM, her pet event.

Silver tonight went to the elder of the 2 McKeowns racing tonight, Taylor McKeown, the winner of the women’s 200m breaststroke on night 1. McKeown clocked 2:13.55 for 2nd place in tonight’s race.

MEN’S 200 IM (FINAL)

  • Australian National Record – 1:56.69, Leith Brodie, 2009
  • ‘A’ Cut – 1:57.81
  • ‘B’ Cut – 2:00.22
  • GOLD – CLYDE LEWIS, 1:58.36
  • SILVER – MITCH LARKIN, 1:59.01
  • BRONZE – TRAVIS MAHONEY, 2:00.19

St. Peters Western swimmer Clyde Lewis successfully defended his 200m IM national title, taking the gold in one of only 2 times to dip under the 2-minute barrier.

1:58.36 is what Lewis produced to drop almost 2 seconds from his morning effort of 2:00.46 and come within a second of the 1:57.81 A standard. Splitting 25.09/29.25/34.61/29.41 Lewis was able to keep runner-up Mitch Larkin at bay, with Larkin in the pool not too far removed from his 200m backstroke victory.

Lewis sits as #4 on the all-time fastest Aussies list with the 1:58.06 he threw down in Budapest last summer.

Larkin’s silver is commendable after his 200m backstroke victory, as this double line-up is still relatively new to the 24-year-old. Larkin has been hot in this 200m IM event as of late, having clocked a new personal best of 1:58.89 last December en route to the Queensland title. His 1:58.89 remains situated among the top 10 in the world so far this season. That performance helped solidify the 24-year-old’s decision to include this 200m IM in his event repertoire for the Gold Coast.

Olympian Travis Mahoney settled for bronze in 2:00.19 and will no doubt go full throttle in his signature 400m IM race tomorrow.

MEN’S 100 FLY (FINAL)

  • Austrlian National Record – 50.85, Andrew Lauterstein, 2009
  • ‘A’ Cut – 51.31
  • ‘B’ Cut – 52.29
  • GOLD – DAVID MORGAN, 52.32
  • SILVER – GRANT IRVINE, 52.50
  • BRONZE – BRAYDEN MCCARTHY, 52.57

The 2 seasoned swimmers in David Morgan and Grant Irvine, both 2016 Olympians, did the minimum to get into tonight’s finals, only to shut the door on a possible run by 20-year-old Brayden McCarthy.

This morning, McCarthy ripped the 2nd best time of his career in 52.22, but would up adding time tonight to clock 52.57 and fade to 3rd place overall. He opened with 24.41, the fastest first split of the top trio, but wasn’t able to hold on, as Morgan fired off a 27.38 closing back half.

Morgan took up the gold medal spot with a winning time of 52.32, while Griffth athlete Irvine touched less than .2 behind in 52.50. Tonight’s gold represents Morgan’s 3rd national title.

WOMEN’S 200 BACK (FINAL)

  • Australian National Record – 2:05.68, Emily Seebohm, 2017
  • ‘A’ Cut – 2:07.64
  • ‘B’ Cut – 2:11.53
  • GOLD – KAYLEE MCKEOWN, 2:08.23
  • SILVER – EMILY SEEBOHM, 2:08.24
  • BRONZE – HAYLEY BAKER, 2:08.66

A thrilling duel came down to the wire in the women’s 200m backstroke, as national record holder and Australian backstroking legend Emily Seebohm did her best to fight off a charging teenager in Kaylee McKeown. McKeown took the title by a fingernail, clocking 2:08.23 to Seebohm’s 2:08.24.

Melbourne Vicentre’s Hayley Baker was also very much in the mix, cranking out the fastest final 50 to come within .42 of the top 2 in a bronze medal-worthy effort of 2:08.66.

Both Seebohm and McKeown settle into the world’s top 5 rankings in the event thus far this season, giving the Aussies a big confidence boost heading into the Gold Coast. They’ll need to defend their home turf against the likes of Canada’s Taylor Ruck and world record holder Kylie Masse.

2017-2018 LCM WOMEN 200 BACK

KylieCAN
MASSE
04/08
2.05.98
2Kathleen
BAKER
USA2.06.1408/12
3Margherita
PANZIERA
ITA2.06.1808/09
4Taylor
RUCK
CAN2.06.3603/02
5Regan
Smith
USA2:06.43*WJR07/26
View Top 26»

WOMEN’S 800 FREE (FINAL)

  • Australian National Record – 8:18.14, Jess Ashwood, 2016
  • ‘A’ Cut – 8:30.66
  • ‘B’ Cut – 8:36.56
  • GOLD – ARIARNE TITMUS, 8:20.08
  • SILVER – JESS ASHWOOD, 8:29.08
  • BRONZE – KIAH MELVERTON, 8:31.08

The Tasmanian teen was at it again, as 17-year-old freestyle ace Ariarne Titmus secured her 3rd gold medal of these championships. Having scorched a new 400m freestyle national record in an earlier session in addition to taking the 200m free gold, Titmus blasted a big-time personal best of 8:20.08 in this women’s 800m freestyle to complete a freestyle trifecta.

With her victory tonight, Titmus became the first swimmer in 14 years and only the 6th Australian ever to sweep the 200m/400m/800m freestyle events. Her winning effort tonight checks Titmus in as the 2nd fastest Australian ever in the event, sitting only behind Jess Ashwood’s NR of 8:18.14 from 2016.

Ashwood finished with the silver in 8:29.08, also an A cut, while open water swimmer Kiah Melverton also landed on the podium with bronze in 8:31.08.

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Caeleb Dressel Will Get 8 golds in Tokyo

Anytime I see someone go 1:58 in the 200 im, I am reminded of how amazing a 1:55 for Phelps was in 2003

Robbos

Cannot ever remembering Australia having a decent 200IMer, maybe there was a half decent but nothing great & nothing out of this world like a Phelps in the 200IM.

Anon

Ian Thorpe was prob our best… won a silver medal far behind phelps in 2003. Given it was a throwaway event he did for a year 159 was pretty fast for the time and the Aussies gave barely gotten faster in the last 15 years

Cooked Maggie Noodles

You can watch the finals on 7plus.com.au

KeithM

Michaela Ryan, 15 y/o, 58.9 in the 100 fly is one to watch.

Robbos

Didn’t see that one, pretty awesome for a 15 year old.

About Loretta Race

Loretta Race

Loretta grew up outside Toledo, OH, where she swam age group and high school. Graduating from Xavier University, she stayed in the Cincinnati, OH area and currently resides just outside the city in Northern KY.  Loretta got back into the sport of swimming via Masters and now competes and is …

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