Photo of Jazz Carlin courtesy of British Swimming
Jazz Carlin has had a fantastic week at the British Gas National Championships and World Championship Trials. Earlier in the meet she won the 800 freestyle in a time of 8:18.58, which is the fastest time in the world this year and she also won the 1500 freestyle in a time of 15:47.26, which is the second fastest time in the world, only 11 one-hundredths of a second behind American Katie Ledecky.
On the final night of the competition Carlin added one more event to her schedule in Barcelona by winning the 400 freestyle in a time of 4:04.25 which is the fourth fastest time in the world this year. It is interesting situation that Carlin and her coach Bud McAllister find themselves in, should Carlin swim all three events or will they scratch one of the events?
Carlin in an interview after the race told the reporter that McAllister sees her as a distance specialist, but also added that she does not want to let go of the 400.
Her 400 freestyle is also a best time by 1.26 and a new Welsh national record.
Eleanor Faulkner finished second in a time of 4:09.07 followed by Aimee Willmott who posted a time of 4:09.90.
Carlin was the only swimmer to go under the British qualifying time of 4:08.73.
In what was one of the most fascinating races of the competition Craig McNally took the 200 backstroke in a time of 1:56.35, which is a personal best by by over two seconds. McNally had an outstanding final 50 catching and overtaking both Chris Walker-Hebborn and James Goddard.
McNally’s time is the sixth fastest time in the world this year.
Chris Walker-Hebborn, who has had an outstanding meet dominating the 100 backstroke winning it in a time of 53.38, finished second in a time of 1:57.20 only three one-hundreths of a second ahead of James Goddard, who has stated that if he did not make the World Championships team that he would really have to evaluate if he was going to extend his swimming career.
All three man were under the British qualifying time of 1:57.42.
Daniel Fogg took the men’s 1500 freestyle in a time of 15:01.74. After seeing Fogg have such a great competition posting great times in the 400 freestyle (3:47.57) and the 800 (7:51.60) there was an expectation that he was going to have a marvellous swim in what is his best pool event, the 1500 freestyle.
It became quite apparent at the half way point of the race that the week’s events had taken a toll on Fogg whose splits were as follows:
4:58.06/10:00.78 (5:02.72)/15:01.74 (5:00.66)
In an interview after the race you could see that Fogg was disappointed, even though he told the reporter that he couldn’t be too disappointed after how he swum during the week. The time is the fastest he has done this year after having posted a time of 15:26.93 in March, but was off his best of 14:55.30 which he recorded in London.
The race for second was a dramatic one that saw Jack Burnell finish second in a time of 15:16.12 just ahead of Stephen Milne who finished in a time of 15:16.19.
Fogg was the only swimmer under the British qualifying time of 15:04.39.
The top three men in the 100 freestyle all capped off a successful competition by collecting hardware in the event.
Adam Brown swept the sprint events winning the 100 freestyle in a time of 48.67. He won the 50 freestyle earlier in the competition posting a time of 21.92. Brown’s winning time in the 100 freestyle was only one one-hundredths of a second slower than his personal best.
Robbie Renwick finished second in a time of 49.17 breaking the Scottish national record. Earlier in the meet he won the 200 freestyle (1:46.63) and 400 freestyle (3:47.02). At the conclusion of the meet Renwick commented on his week on twitter “Happy with my swims this week. Bring on the battle in barca!”
Ben Proud finished third in a time of 49.48. Proud could be the most exciting young sprinter in the world today. The 18 year old also posted a time of 22.01 to finish second to Brown in the 50 freestyle.
Brown was the only swimmer under the British qualifying time of 48.77.
The men’s 100 breaststroke was another exciting race with Ross Murdoch finishing at the top of the heap in a time of 59.80. That time is the third fastest time in the world this year and a personal best by over a second. The 19 year old posted a 1:00.97 in April.
He was followed by the 200 breaststroke Olympic silver medallist Michael Jamieson who recorded a time of 1:00.06 and fellow teenager Adam Peaty who finished third in a time of 1:00.11.
Fran Halsall collected two wins on the evening, the second much more satisfying then the first. Halsall won the 100 freestyle in a time of 54.82, which is off her season’s best of 54.62 and over the British qualifying time of 54.39. She had already qualified for consideration for the team earlier in the meet winning the 50 freestyle in a time of 24.54.
She was followed by Jessica Lloyd who posted a time of 55.30 and Rebecca Turner who finished in a time of 55.59.
The 50 butterfly was a very different story where it appeared that Halsall was determined to make up for her misstep in her previous race. She won the event in a time of 25.91, almost a full second ahead of her competition. Her time was a season’s best, the fourth fastest time in the world this year and
was under the British qualifying time of 26.52.
Siobhan-Marie O’Connor finished second in a time of 26.83 followed by Emma Wilkins who finished third in a time 26.84.
It had only been 24 hours since Roberto Pavoni celebrated his win in the 200 IM that he got the opportunity to do it all over again, winning the 400 IM in a time of 4:13.67. The race was a close one with only 29 one-hundreths of a second separating Pavoni and Daniel Wallace with 100 meters to go, but that is when Pavoni made his move and pulled away Wallace eventually winning the race by over a second and a half.
Pavoni’s time was a season’s best and the ninth in the world this year.
Wallace had to fend off Lewis Smith who was closing on him quickly in the final 50. Wallace finished second in a time of 4:15.22 followed by Smith who posted a time of 4:15.51.
All three men were under the British qualifying time of 4:15.60.
Michael Rock took the men’s 100 butterfly in a time of 51.97. Rock’s semi-final time of 51.91 was the tenth fastest time done in the world this year. He was followed by Thomas Laxton who recorded a 52.40 and Adam Barrett who finished third in a time of 52.56.
Rock was the only swimmer to go under the British qualifying time of 52.22.
It was only yesterday that Georgia Davies was out touched by six one-hundredths of a second by Lauren Quigley for the win of the 100 backstroke; today was a different story. Davies took the win in the 50 backstroke in a time of 27.97 just ahead of Quigley who finished second posting a time of 28.16.
Both women were under the British qualifying time of 28.45.
Jessica Fullalove finished third in a time of 28.82.
Stacy Tadd won the women’s 200 breaststroke fending off a late charge by Molly Renshaw. Tadd took the event in a time of 2:27.52 with Renshaw finishing in a time of 2:27.71.
Both women were over the British qualifying time of 2:26.81.
Sophie Taylor finished third posting a time of 2:28.82.
After the meet in an interview on the British Swimming broadcast, new National Team Coach Bill Furniss seemed somewhat satisfied, commenting on how they structured the meet to challenge the swimmers and that the real success was the performance of the younger swimmers, “We have some real breakthrough swims by our young swimmers,” said Furniss.
He also went to mentioned Ben Proud and Jazz Carlin as having some of the more impressive performances.
The full British team will be announced early next week.