Daniel Wiffen Becomes First-Ever Irishman To Own European Record


  • Thursday, December 15th – Saturday, December 17th
  • National Aquatic Centre, Dublin, Ireland
  • SCM (25m)
  • Results

While many of the world’s biggest stars are competing at the 2022 FINA Short Course World Championships, others are competing at national championships at home.

Among them is the rapidly-improving freestyle ace Daniel Wiffen of Ireland, who just fired off the fastest 800m free of his career en route to a new European Record.

On day one of the Irish Winter Championships, Wiffen produced a monster result of 7:25.96 to become the first-ever Irish swimmer to break a European swimming record.

Wiffen’s time not only hacked his own previous personal best of 7:35.71 to bits, but it dropped nearly 2 seconds off of the prior European Record of 7:27.94 Italy’s Olympic medalist Gregorio Paltrinieri put on the books last year.

His 7:25.96 now checks Wiffen in as the 4th fastest performer in history.

All-Time Men’s SCM 800 Free Performers

  1. Grant Hacket (AUS) – 7:23.42 2008
  2. Mykhailo Romanchuk (UKR) – 7:25.73 2020 *not ratified
  3. Henrik Christiansen (NOR) – 7:25.78 2020 *not ratified
  4. Daniel Wiffen (IRL) – 7:25.96 2022
  5. Gregorio Paltrinieri (ITA) – 7:27.94 2021

Remarkably during the swim, Wiffen also scored a new Irish record in the 400m distance with his split of 3:41.63.

Wiffen has simply been on fire this year, having broken this 800m freestyle Irish record three times. He first notched a time of 7:39.03 at the British Universities & Colleges (BUCS) Championships in November. Then, he knocked that down to a time of 7:35.71 as his 800m free split of his 1500m free swim at the Scottish National Championships last week.

After his historic race tonight, Wiffen stated, ‘I’m very happy, it’s obviously a very fast time and number one in the World (this year). I knew that I’d be sub 7.30 and I was aiming for a top ten in the World, I think that puts me fourth, but I said quietly I’d go for a European Record to all my friends in Loughborough, I’m really happy.’

‘The 1500m was my main focus for the meet (last weekend), and I knew that since I was going to Irish I would do the 800m and 400m there because I thought the 800m could be my quickest, my better event and it’s what I qualified in the Olympics for, and it was nice to get a home crowd watching that.’

Wiffen trains at the University of Loughborough. He took silver in the men’s 1500m freestyle this summer at the Commonwealth Games.

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NornIron Swim
11 months ago

Incredible again! No muckin’ about in that.

11 months ago

Some swim and some coaching effort, congratulations to both Daniel and Andi. Richard & Martin clearly laid the foundations brilliantly in Lisburn – Can’t wait to see how much more there is to come.

Reply to  Dee
11 months ago

Funny that a few years ago British Swimming told a World Class Programme athlete not to go to Loughborough because they couldn’t cater for distance swimming. Great job Andi Manley for proving them wrong. Also good to show that elite swimmers can and are being developed outside of National Training Centres

Reply to  ukswimcoach
11 months ago

Not sure how it is in the UK, but all the best performances from Irish swimmers seem to come from those training outside the national centres in Ireland.

Amazing swim from the Loughborough swimmer.

11 months ago

Well that’s quite impressive for a 1500m.

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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