Day 2 of the 2014 Australian Age Championships didn’t see as many record-breaking swims as the meet’s first day, however the record-breaking swim that we did get was a momentous one.
15-year old Kyle Chalmers became the youngest swimmer in Australia history, and from what we can tell in world history, to go under 50 seconds in the 100 long course meter freestyle. The Marion swimmer touched in 49.68 in the race to top Benno Negri 51.41) and Matthew Wilson (51.67) for the win.
This generation of male sprinters seems to be a strong group that could continue competing all the way through the senior ranks; in example, the top four were all faster than the time of last year’s winner in the event.
The Australian Age Championships Divide swimmers into different classes by age over an 8-day meet. For the regular swimming, those age groups are 12-13, 14, 15, 16, and 17-18. For the Multi-Class races, that’s 11-14, 15–16, and 17-18, though that varies for some events. With 204 events to cover, we’re going to take the strategy of really delving into the top 4-5 swims of each finals session, and then give more bullet-pointed lists of the rest of the winners. We hope that this will help our readers wade through a couple of hundred races to focus in on some of the really key information.
Jared Anderson contributed to this report.
That was Chalmers’ first swim of the meet, but the theme overall of Tuesday’s finals session was swimmers doubling (or even tripling) up on wins through just two days of this meet in Sydney.
Allana Bowles from Rock City continued her role as a star of the 16-year old girls’ age group so far with a 4:12.98 in the 400 free. That’s a couple of seconds off of her lifetime best in the swim, but coming off of the 200 fly win on Monday, she was the second swimmer at this meet to take a second victory. Sacha Downing had a nice time of 4:14.36 to come in 2nd behind Bowles; Downing dropped a monstrous 7 seconds off of her seed time coming into the meet.
The only swimmer who beat Bowles to the punch on multiple wins was Canadian Mary-Sophie Harvey, who actually picked up a pair on Monday. That meant on Tuesday, she swam for a 3rd win, which she got in 2:19.50. While that’s still far from the Canadian Record (she got one of those for 13-14’s on Monday), it’s a 10-second improvement from her lifetime best, as she’s demonstrated a lot of versatility already at this meet.
The top-finishing Australian was Connie McClelland in 2:21.76.
Also joining the double-winner club very early in this meet is West Coast swimmer Damian Fyfe, who’s part of a growing swimming culture in Australia’s sparsely-populated western state. Much like his female 16-year old counterpart Bowles, Fyfe has now led off both finals sessions with wins in this meet – the 200 fly on Monday and this 400 free on Tuesday.
Three swimmers joined him in clearing four minutes, including Mitchell Davenport-Wright from Melbourne Vicentre in 3:56.45 and Max Carleton from East Brisbane in 3:56.79.
While Bowles, mentioned earlier, is a bright talent for the future of Aussie butterflying, another 15-year old swimmer from the West Coast team in the Perth suburb of Mount Claremont is hot on her tail. Tasmin Cook won the girls’ 15-year olds 200 fly title on Tuesday in 2:12.61, which is two seconds faster than Bowles’ winning time from last season.
Cook had a devilish 29.90 opening 50 leading into a 1:03.64 at the halfway mark. That could make potential battles with Bowles even more intriguing, as the two swim similarly-paced races.
Chelsea Gubecka was 2nd in this race in 2:14.93. She might have mis-paced this one a bit, as she was a 34.73 on her closing 50, which was almost half-a-second faster than her third 50. That’s fairly uncommon in the 200 fly.
The sprint races are always a highlight at these meets, and opposite of Chalmers’ record-breaking swim, 15-year old Shayna Jack from Chandler won the 100 free in 55.20. That moves her up to 4th on the all-time list in Australia in this event for 15-year olds.
Tasmin Cook, mentioned above as the winner of that 200 fly took 2nd in this 100 free in 56.51, and Vivian Zhu of the home town Sydney Swim club took 3rd in 57.07.
Moving up an age group, in the 16-year old girls’ 50 free, Lucy McJannet doubled up on her win in the 100 from Monday with a 25.55 in the 50 free. Emily Waddington from Ravenswood repeated her 2nd-place spot with a 25.71, and Lizzie Gannon from Nudgee Brothers moved up to 3rd with a 25.82.
Not only did that swim for McJannet sit just ahead of the time with which Ami Matsuo won last year, it also bumped Matsuo’s time from last year off of the age group’s all-time top 10 list by .02 seconds.
In the boys’ 16-year olds 50 free, Vincent Dai won fairly comfortably in 23.09. Canadian Javier Acevedo was 2nd in a lifetime best of 23.60.
Other Event Champions
- Joshua Kennedy of MLC Aquatic dominated the 14-year-0ld boys 200 back, going 2:08.89 to win by two and a half seconds.
- 13-year-old Minna Atherton won the girls 12-13 200 IM. Her 2:21.41 touched out Megan Bogatie by just .2.
- Palm Beach’s Elijah Winnington took the boys version of that event, going 2:13.98, a full second faster than last year’s winner. That’s the second win of the week for Winnington, who paced the 200 free on Monday in an age record time.
- At 17, Lauren Rettie of Nudgee Brothers won the 17-18 girls 100 back, going 1:03.72 in a tight final where 9 of the top 10 were separated by just about a second.
- In the boys 17-18 100 back, Yeronga Park’s Will Stockwell went 56.58 to top Peter Mills by .18.
- Cameron Usher of TSS Aquatic won the boys 200 fly for 15-year-olds. His 2:04.35 took the title by almost a second.
- In the longest race of the day, Jack Brazier won the 14-year-old boys 1500 for Mountain Creek. Brazier went 16:05.52, a full 20 seconds faster than the 2013 champ in this event.
- After almost winning that 200 IM earlier, 13-year-old Megan Bogatie triumphed in the girls 12-13 100 fly, going 1:03.98 to run away with things.
- Dante Negri of MLC Aquatic won the boys version of that event in a blowout. His 58.55 crushed the field by two seconds, with 200 IM winner Eli Winnington second.
- Tianni Gilmour of Pelican Waters won the 17-18 girls 400 IM, going 4:47.84, a huge drop of almost 11 seconds from her seed time.
- 17-year-old Hayden Hinds-Sydenham won the boys 400 IM in that age group, going 4:24.82 with a big 59.3 split on his closing 100.
- Samantha McKenna topped the girls 100 breast for 16-year-olds, going 1:13.24 to claim the title for Trinity Lismore.
- In the boys 16-year-0ld 100 breast, West Coast swimmer Alex Milligan went 1:04.40 for the championship, jumping out to a big lead over the first 50 and riding the open water to victory.
- Nunawading closed the girls events by winning the 4×100 free relay in an intense showdown with Carlile. Nunawading went 3:52.51, getting a 57.49 from anchor Julia Hawkins. Carlile was nearly out of the hunt with 100 t0 go, but anchor Ami Matsuo dropped a giant 54.74 to come to within a tenth of stealing victory from Nunawading.
- In the boys relay, Cherrybrook topped Marion by just over a second. Cherrybrook went 3:25.69 with straight 51s from Vincent Dai, Peter Topalidis, Luke Crimson-Smith and Angus Hannan. Marion had a quick anchor leg from Kyle Chalmers at 50.34, but finished second with a 3:26.79.