The Tramway Championship
- June 16-18, 2020
- Eriksdal, Sweden, Tramway Swimming Association
- 50m (LCM)
- Meet Results
Swedish swimmer Bjorn Seeliger has broken his own National Junior Record in the 50 meter free in long course, swimming a 22.06 in a small local meet last week. The time breaks his own personal best and Junior Record of 22.27 that was set in July of 2018 at the European Junior Championships.
The event was held within accordance of Swedish law, limited to 50 swimmers in the pool area at a time, meaning races were often combined with swimmers of different strokes.
Seeliger turns 20 this year, and under Swedish rules, swimmers can set Junior Records through the year where they turn 20.
Seeliger’s time inches closer to the 22.01 Olympic “A” qualifying standard set by FINA upon original announcement in 2018, though neither FINA nor the IOC has announced if those standards will change after the Olympic postponement.
Seeliger previously swam a 22.08 in the 50 free in a “Stockholm Closed” time trial event in March, which was one of 3 best times for him at that event. Those results were not apparently entered as official swims, however. At that closed meet prior to shutdown, he also swam a best of 49.12 in the 100 free and 24.30 in the 50 fly.
The Swedish Federation has confirmed that Seeliger’s latest swim will be counted as a record.
Seeliger is scheduled to begin his freshman season at Cal in the fall of 2020. There he will join a sprint group that had the two fastest 50-yard freestylers in the NCAA last season: Ryan Hoffer (18.87) and Pawel Sendyk (18.91). Hoffer has one remaining season of eligibility, while Sendyk exhausted his last season without the chance at an NCAA Championship meet.
Seeliger has represented his country internationally on several occasions, including at both the European Junior and European open championships in 2018. He also swam at the 2019 European Short Course Swimming Championships in late 2019, one of the world’s last major championships before shutdowns began, where he placed 31st in both the 50 free and 100 free.
Seeliger was one of a number of Swedish national teamers who performed at that meet:
- Louise Hansson swam the 100 fly twice, marking 58.15 and 58.27.
- Robin Hansson swam a 1:48.70 in the 200 free, off his personal best of 1:46.90
- Michelle Coleman, who is again on the comeback trail, swam 26.56 in the 50 free and 28.06 in the 50 fly.
- The relay of Seeliger (22.31), Robin Hanson (22.46), Isak Eliasson (22.58), and Gustav Hokfelt (22.70) combined for a 1:30.05 in the men’s 200 free relay. That’s almost a second better than the National Record of 1:30.97 that was set in 2014.
Sweden is among the few nations that have not shut their elite athletes out of training for any substantial period of time. Swedish swimmers have been able to continue training at the National Training Center throughout the pandemic as part of the country’s general more lasseiz faire approach to the global coronavirus pandemic.
Sweden has had more than 56,000 confirmed cases of coronavirus and over 5,000 deaths attributed to the virus. According to worldometers, that ranks the country as having the 7th-highest COVID-19 death toll-per capita in the world
Scandanavia has been leading the way out of the pandemic, with Finnish breaststroker Ida Hulkko breaking two National Records just over a week ago in her country’s first meet back.