MONTE CARLO, Monaco – Canada’s Martha McCabe and Kierra Smith earned silver and bronze medals in women’s 200-metre breaststroke whilst respectively competing in Rome and Monte Carlo on Sunday.
McCabe, who’s gearing up to compete in the Pan Am Games in her hometown next month, took second in 200-m breaststroke at the Sette Colli meet in Rome, Italy. The 25-year-old Toronto native posted a time of two minutes 25.15 seconds to reach the podium alongside gold medallist Victoria Gunes of Turkey (2:24.18) and third-place Ilaria Scarcella (2:25.52) of Italy.
“The time for time is solid for right now,” said McCabe, who is based with the High Performance Centre – Ontario. “I wanted to win, obviously, but [Gunes] was a full second ahead. I was able to swim my own race. It was good for me because I pushed hard toward the end. She just had a better finish than I did.
“We [the HPC-Ontario group] have had three meets in a row, so to have 2:25.1 after all the swims we’ve had was a really good sign for the summer,” added McCabe. “Pan Ams are coming pretty quickly. Now we’re going to Italy to train for six days before we come back to Toronto for a week and half, two weeks before we meet up with the team. So we’ll have a good week before we taper down.”
At Monte Carlo, Smith punctuated her strong run in the Mare Nostrum series by claiming bronze in 2:25.67. The Kelowna, B.C., native, stayed up with Danish world record holder Rikke Moller-Pedersen, who won in 2:23.53 and Japan’s Kanako Watanabe, who swam 2:23.86 to take silver. Smith had a hard push from the United States’ Micah Lawrence (2:25.89) but retained third.
“It was a fun race – it was fun to be in a lane between an American [Lawrence] and the world record holder [Moller-Pedersen],” said Smith, who won two bronzes during three-country series. “It was a good experience. I’m excited to have had another 2:25 – it’s a good time for right now.
“The whole trip went well for me,” added Smith, who will make both her Pan Am and FINA World Championships debuts next month. “I’m really happy with this. I’m excited to go home with the medals. It sets me up well for summer. I’m a lot more confident racing since the [National Team] Trials. I’m going to be training long-course for the next six weeks so I’m going to be lot faster going into summer.”
Also at Mare Nostrum, Alec Page was fifth in men’s 400-m individual medley in 4:23.23, a quarter-second out of fourth. Japan’s Daiya Seto won in a meet-record 4:10.58.
Page’s High Performance Centre – Victoria counterpart, Hilary Caldwell, finished seven in women’s 100-m backstroke, recording a 1:02.12.
Fifteen-year-old Mary-Sophie Harvey (women’s 200-m butterfly, 2:20.15) and veteran Jeremy Gagne (men’s 200-m backstroke, 2:10.50) each had 10th-place results.
The versatile Harvey also finished 13th in women’s 200-m IM after clocking 2:20.27 in her B final. The youngster was fourth in 400-m IM on Saturday.
HPC-Victoria’s Jeremy Bagshaw and Ryan Cochrane were 11th and 13th in men’s 200-m freestyle, clocking 1:51.52 and 1:52.20 in the B final.
Mackenzie Darragh (12th), Nicolaas Dekker (14th) and Gamal Assad (16th) reached the men’s 100-m butterfly B final.
Swimming news courtesy of Swimming Canada.