“It Really Hurt”, Says Aussie Laura Taylor Of 200 Fly Upset (2:06.80)


Day 1 Prelims Recap/Day 1 Finals Recap

Day 1 of the 2018 Australian Swimming Trials pitted seasoned veterans against rising racers, giving us the first glimpse into a sure-to-be diversified Commonwealth Games roster. Olympic medalist Emma McKeon collected 2 silvers on the night, but she was upstaged in her individual events by teenagers.

In the 200m freestyle, 17-year-old Ariarne Titmus put on a show with a super quick winning time of 1:55.76 to claim the title and A qualifying standard.

On her opening performance, Titmus stated, “It’s exciting, I’ve got a lot more speed now and it means I can go out harder and it won’t hurt as much so that’s a good thing.” Her coach Dean Boxall, has been unwell this week and the Tasmanian explains she wanted to do it for him.

“Dean has been really crook, I didn’t know whether he would even be here tonight but he came down from Brisbane which was great.

“It was exciting that he was here tonight to see the race but if he wasn’t I knew I’d done the training and I was going to swim for him.”

18-year-old Laura Taylor got the best of McKeon tonight in the 200m butterfly, with Taylor taking the title in a monster personal best of 2:06.80, also an A qualifying time.

The emotion came pouring out upon Taylor’s finish. “When I pushed off the 100 (metre) turn and I was with the girls, I reckoned I could drop them, then at the fourth 50 (metres) I paid for it. It really hurt, but it won me the race,” Taylor said.

“I’ve got a pretty easy week now; I’m happy to get the 200 metres out of the way, that was probably the most nervous I had been for a race.”

National teamer Mitch Larkin did some damage in the men’s 100m backstroke, winning in the only sub-54 second time of the field in 53.37. Of his performance, the 24-year-old stated, “The plan is to really find my groove and to build my strength from there. Tonight was a really good swim. I’d like to go quicker and I know I can.”

Matthew Wilson also notched his name onto the Commonwealth Games roster for Australia, decisively winning the men’s 200m breaststroke in a mark of 2:08.31, a new personal best.

“I’m stoked with that. I don’t think it was the best swim, but just getting on to the team is a big honour for me,” Wilson said.

“I’ve been thinking about these Commonwealth Games probably since the last Commonwealth Games. I’ve really wanted to be here, it’s going to be a massive crowd, so it’s been in my head for the last four years now.

“It’s been a lot of hard work and a few ups and downs, with a few holes I’ve had to get myself out of, but it’s good to be in the team.”

The night’s events were capped off by a tremendous effort by Olympic gold medalist Kyle Chalmers, who landed on top of a heap of talent in the men’s 200m freestyle. Touching in 1:46.49, Chalmers beat out the likes of Mack Horton, Daniel Smith and Cameron McEvoy, the latter of whom finished a full second and 3 places lower than he did at this same meet last year.

“Honestly, it is the best feeling I’ve had in quite a while, it has been a hard 12 months. To get back racing on the national stage, and to get my first long-course title, means so much to me,” Chalmers commented post-race.

All quotes courtesy of Swimming Australia.

Relive some of the action with the Swimming Australia photo gallery, knowing there’s 3 more days of intense battling to ensue.

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