2017 SWIM ENGLAND NATIONAL WINTER CHAMPIONSHIPS
- Wednesday, December 13th – Sunday, December 17th
- Ponds Forge, Sheffield
- Commonwealth Games selection at stake
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The Swim England National Winter Championships, which served as a last chance qualification meet for next year’s Commonwealth Games, ended on a high note last night, with 6 more consideration times clocked in the final session.
Among them was Ellie Faulkner, the 200m freestyle winner earlier in the meet, who notched a new personal best in the 400m to add that title to her Sheffield haul. Stopping the clock at 4:06.90, Faulkner hacked just under half a second off of her previous career-fastest and easily dipped under the 4:11.75 qualifying mark.
Reigning British champion in the women’s 400m freestyle event, Holly Hibbott, also dipped under the QT with a silver medal-garnering effort of 4:07.20. Both women were already selected for the event.
The women’s 200m butterfly saw Plymouth Leander’s Laura Stephens top the podium, knocking almost a full second off of her previous personal best. Touching the wall in 2:09.32, Stephens slid comfortably under the 2:10.19 QT and added a 2nd gold to her 100m butterfly victory from earlier in the meet.
Of note, Aimee Willmott of Stirling fell just short of the QT with a silver medal time of 2:10.61, however, she’s already earned marks in the 200m IM and 400m IM and may potentially get a discretionary nod.
Although already selected for Gold Coast, Luke Greenbank of Loughborough still sped his way to the wall first in the men’s 200m backstroke. His time of 1:58.32 was a solid in-season effort and still fell under the 1:58.67 QT threshold.
19-year-old Plymouth swimmer Tom Fannon scored a personal best 50m freestyle time of 22.10 to make the grade. His time sneaked under the 22.12 standard by just .02, but it’s enough to join Ben Proud in the Gold Coast next year.
19-year-old Joe Litchfield fell just shy of qualifying in the men’s 200m IM event, clocking 2:00.58 to win when he needed at least 1:59.76 to join brother Max Litchfield on the England Commonwealth Games roster.