Jacob Whittle Swims Britain’s Fastest-Ever 100 Free by a 13-Year Old

13-year old Jacob Whittle (Courtesy: Derventio Excel)

13-year old Jacob Whittle of the Derventio Excel swim team in England’s East Midlands region has broken his country’s National Age Record in the 100 long course meter freestyle.

Swimming at a hosted meet at Pond’s Forge in his team’s May Long Course Meet, Whittle swam a 53.79 in the 100 free. While technically swimming in the 14-year olds race, as they were categorized by year of birth not date of birth, he won’t actually turn 14 until September, 2018.

The time breaks the 2017 record set by Ned Sharp at 53.85. Before Sharp, the record of 54.21 by Jack Smith had stood since 2009; Smith is currently racing for Columbia University in the United States.

A handful of 13-year olds around the world have been sub-54 (with the less-than-definitive fastest we could find being Germany’s Johannes Hintze, who was a 52.58 in 2013), but USA Swimming’s domestic database has a record of only 2, the same number as the UK: Andrew Trepanier in 2014 (53.63), and Dare Rose, who swam 53.99 in 2016.

Whittle opened in a 26.08, and came back in 27.21. Earlier this month, he swam the second-fastest time in age group history in the 50 free with a 24.74, and he improved that on Saturday with a 24.68 (still 2nd-best behind Smith’s 24.65).

“Jacob is a great kid with a top attitude,” said Derventio coach Jamie Main. “This season he’s grown not only in stature but more in terms of how he races & manages a meet. This is important as he races every event in the programme across a season from 50m to 1500m Free, both IM’s and all strokes. It’s always a busy meet for J but lots of fun racing different distances & strokes. Huge credit has to go to his coach, Jack Chambers, who is doing a great job at developing our age group swimmers. Also to Jacob’s home coach, Glenn Fisher, at Ripley for his early skill development work.

“His parents are very supportive with Mum being on our committee & Dad volunteering at every meet.”

Whittle’s other results on the weekend (LCM):

  • 100 breaststroke – 1:12.86
  • 400 IM – 4:54.72
  • 200 free – 1:59.80
  • 200 IM – 2:13.90
  • 100 fly – 1:01.78


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3 years ago

Chalmers was a 52.29 at 13

Reply to  Oops
3 years ago

Yeah but these are boys chalmers was already a man at 13.

Reply to  Oops
3 years ago

Pretty incredible, but Chalmers may already have been a pretty big guy.

Bon Jovi
3 years ago

joe schooling went faster in practice

Reply to  Bon Jovi
3 years ago

that one never gets old

3 years ago

Accounting for the effect of diving, he negative split his 100!

Reply to  crawler
3 years ago

Hi there Jacob did 53.61 short course and then 53.79 long course and hopefully goes for a quicker time before he becomes 14. Kind regards Brad

Reply to  Braden Keith
3 years ago

Forgive me…how embarrassing

Reply to  DMacNCheez
3 years ago

shame! *ring* shame! *ring*
jk 😉

Reply to  anonymoose
3 years ago


3 years ago

Tom Hauck did a 52.61 at 13 2 yrs ago.

Sum Ting Wong
Reply to  Joel
3 years ago

And got beaten by a new face at 15 . That is age group swimming for you , another kid came come out of the blue . As long as everyone realises a jr fast time / win is just a place in time then it’s all good . Otherwise it becomes a burden .

2 years ago

Hi. I am from South Africa. We have a swimmer by the name of Luca Holtzhausen. He is 13-14 age group and swims a 52.14 long coarse and 52.08 short coarse. 0lease compare this with world age group rankings.

About Braden Keith

Braden Keith

Braden Keith is the Editor-in-Chief and a co-founder of SwimSwam.com. He first got his feet wet by building The Swimmers' Circle beginning in January 2010, and now comes to SwimSwam to use that experience and help build a new leader in the sport of swimming. Aside from his life on the InterWet, …

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