Austrians Knock Down 4 National Records On Night 1 of Graz Trophy


An impressive 4 Austrian National Records were wiped out on night 1 of the 2019 Graz Trophy. The meet serves as the nation’s last chance to qualify for this summer’s World Championships in Gwangju, Korea, and the Austrian big guns were out in force to take full advantage.

First in the women’s 50m backstroke, Caroline Pilhatsch lowered her own Austrian national standard en route to gold. Firing off a time of 28.01, that sliced .05 off of her own 28.06 time she established just last month. Her time tonight also dips under the 28.22 FINA A cut needed to qualify for Worlds and also inserts Pilhatsch into the season’s world rankings at #17.

Pilhatsch has been on a roll, earning 50m back silver at the 2018 Short Course World Championships. In Hangzhou China, Pilhatsch became the first Austrian female ever under the 26- second barrier in the short course 50 back and also earned her nation’s first World Championships medal since Mirna Jukic in Rome at the LCM edition.

Another female did some major damage tonight in the form of Lena Grabowski. Snagging the top seed in the women’s 200m backstroke in a mark of 2:11.63, Grabowski dropped over half a second to ultimately log a winning time of 2:10.92. Her former time matched her own national record set just last month, while her final outing set the new mark outright.

Grabowski’s 2:10.92 now checks in as the first Austrian female to ever break the 2:11 barrier in the LCM 200 backstroke event. Her time also dips under the 2:11.53 FINA A cut for Gwangju.

The other 2 national records that bit the dust tonight came courtesy of the men, with Christopher Rothbauer registering a new mark n the 100m breaststroke. Taking the top seed in a morning time of 1:00.65, followed by a gold medal-garnering effort of 1:00.59 at night, the 21-year-old surpassed the previous Austrian national record of 1:00.78 that’s been on the books since the supersuited era.

Rothbauer’s time sits just .04 outside the Austrian Federation’s time minimum of 1:00.55 needed for the World Championships.

The final record to be eliminated came in the men’s 50m backstroke event. Bernhard Reitshammer produced a podium-topping effort of 25.00 to win by just under half a second, as well as get in under the FINA A cut of 25.17. His time tonight overtook the previous NR of 25.57 held by Olympian Markus Rogan since way back in 2009.

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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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