Cate Campbell & Emma McKeon Battle In 100 Free At Southport Prep Meet


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Several Aussie Olympians dove in today for the 2023 Southport Prep Meet at Gold Coast Aquatic Centre. Based on the times produced, this event was very much a training meet but it’s important to note where the big guns are at with next month’s Queensland Championships and February’s World Championships on the horizon.

22-year-old Olympic champion Kaylee McKeown dove in for 2 races, taking on the women’s 100m breast and 100m fly.

In the former, McKeown topped the field in a time of 1:08.10. For perspective, the Griffith ace owns a lifetime best of 1:06.86, a mark she produced in February of this year at the Vic Open. Chelsea Hodges was entered in this event but wound up not racing.

As for the 100m fly, McKeown stopped the clock in a result of 59.45 to place 4th. Getting to the wall first in that race was Australia’s winningest Olympian of all time, Emma McKeon.

29-year-old McKeon produced a solid in-season effort off 57.71 as the sole swimmer under 58 seconds in her first competition since this summer’s World Championships.

Visiting Japanese Olympian Rikako Ikee posted a time of 58.61 to snag silver while Commonwealth Games champion Elizabeth (Lizzie) Dekkers rounded out the top 3 in 59.45.

Ikee’s time here overtook her previous season-best of 58.98 posted at this year’s Asian Games. There in Hangzhou she placed 5th.

As we reported, Ikee and teammate Daiya Seto are in the midst of a training stint under coach Michael Bohl at Griffth through at least the end of the year.

Ikee also landed on the podium in the last event of the day, the women’s 100m free. The 23-year-old bagged bronze in 54.64 to get to the wall behind Cate Campbell and McKeon.

Campbell registered 53.48 to just to the edge over McKeon who logged 53.50 for silver. C1’s outing was just off her long course season best of 53.26 hit at the Berlin stop of the World Aquatics Swimming World Cup last month.

Ikee’s result once again checks in as a season-best. But for C1 and McKeon, their in-season efforts are simply par for the course for the powerhouse Aussie sprinting arsenal. C1’s 53.48 would have placed 7th in the final at this year’s World Championships.

The aforementioned Seto of Japan raced in the 100m breast and 100m fly events today, reaping silver in each.

The 100m breast saw the 29-year-old clock 1:02.52, a time which earned silver behind Chandler’s Bailey Lello who grabbed gold in 1:01.22. Of note, Olympian Zac Stubblety-Cook was entered in the race but wound up not swimming this nor the 200m breast.

Seto’s time of 54.68 in the 100m fly came about 2 seconds behind winner Cody Simpson who topped the podium in 52.81. Simpson also won the men’s 100m free in a mark of 50.03.

Additional Notes

  • Lani Pallister captured the women’s 800m free handily, registering a time of 8:29.69. Pallister is currently ranked #1 in the world in this event, courtesy of the 8:15.11 put up during the World Cup.
  • The men’s 200m back saw Joshua Edwards-Smith grab gold in 2:00.19 with 2015 world champion Mitch Larkin the next in line in 2:03.34. It was during last year’s Queensland Championships when Edwards-Smith unleashed a big-time personal best of 1:55.42 in this event to become Australia’s #2 performer of all-time in the 2back.

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Nick the biased Aussie
14 days ago

Reminiscent of them going head to head in the lead up to the Tokyo Olympics. Although they were going mid 52s then.

14 days ago

53.48 is actually not too far off what Cate swam in the Rio Olympics final 100 free so good signs ahead

Joshua Liendo-Edwards-Smith
Reply to  Verram
14 days ago

Lol. Backhanded compliment

Nick the biased Aussie
Reply to  Verram
14 days ago

Actually it’s really not far off what it took to win in Rio

15 days ago

The 59.45 100 fly is a PB for Kaylee. It now gives her the fastest 4×100 stroke add ups in history.

Can we do an article about that? Braden did one last year for the 4×200 stroke add ups

It had Hosszu on top but Summer has now taken over.

Reply to  Sub13
15 days ago

Do all of them. Best 50s, 100s and 200s. Would be interesting to see how many cross over the lists.

Also that’s a good sign for McKeown’s IM. She’s set PBs in SO MANY events this year. 50/100/200 Back (all WR), 50/100/200 Breast, 200 free, 100 fly, 200/400IM (for some reason FINA hasn’t recognised her 4IM from Sydney Open though). TEN PBs in a year for a non-age grouper is crazy.

Reply to  Sub13
14 days ago

We were robbed of seeing Kaylee swim the IM at Fukuoka. I feel she was ready to swim 2:06 given how much she’s improved in 100/200 breast

Smimming fan
16 days ago

PB 100 fly for Mckeown?

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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