McKeon Impresses With Quick 100 Fly/50 Free Double; McKeown 58.42 100 Back


Day 2 of the 2021 New South Wales State Championships carried the same caliber of talent we saw on day 1, with superstars Kyle Chalmers, Cate Campbell and Emma McKeon among those racing at Sydney Olympic Park Aquatic Center.

As a reminder, the heats are taking place at night, with finals in the AM, replicating the timing set to take place at this summer’s Olympic Games.

After reaping gold yesterday morning in the men’s 100m free in his first individual race post-shoulder surgery, Olympian Chalmers settled for bronze in the 200m free, posting a solid time of 1:48.53. Taking the meet title was the men’s 400m free winner here already, Elijah Winnington, with the man punching a mark of 1:47.29 to top the field.

Opening in 52.21 and closing in 55.08, Winnington held off runner-up Alex Graham of Bond, who brought his race home in a speedy 54.36 to snag silver less than half a second behind in 1:47.69.

Winnington also topped the men’s 800m free field, reaping gold in a mark of 7:52.88. That easily defeated Olympian Mack Horton, who touched well behind in 8:10.66. Horton usually looks a little flat in-season, but here he’s barely been picked up on the sonar.

Scorching the women’s 100m back race was 19-year-old Kaylee McKeown, following up on her massive 200m back win here on day 1. In this shorter race, the USC Spartan slammed down a wicked-quick 58.42 to register one of two sub-minute outings of the field. The other came from veteran Emily Seebohm who touched in 59.56 for a nice swim of her own.

As for McKeown, the teen led-off in 28.86 and closed in 29.56 to produce the 3rd fastest time of her young career. She recently registered the world’s 2nd fastest time in history with the 57.93 she logged at the Queensland Championships last December. Of note, her time tonight checks-in as a new NSW All-Comers Record.

Olympic medalist McKeon was impressive yet again, with the versatile Griffith University star roaring to the wall in a time of 56.65 to claim victory in the women’s 100m fly. That checks-in as the sprint ace’s 6th fastest time ever, with her lifetime best represented by the 56.18 from the 2017 FINA World Championships.

For perspective, McKeon’s time tonight was just .04 slower than the 56.61 she put up in Gwangju to take 2019 World Championships bronze.

McKeon was also on the podium in the women’s 50m free, logging a silver medal-worthy time of 24.17. That sat just .06 away from gold, with Campbell getting it done in 24.11, while Madi Wilson of Marion rounded out the top 3 in 24.66.

McKeon wowed once again with this time checking as a new lifetime best. Her previous career-fastest was marked by the 24.25 from the 2019 World Championships Trials. McKeon’s effort tonight now checks her in among the top 20 performers of all-time in this event.

Keeping to her trend of improvement in the sprint freestyle events, Wilson’s time tonight is a new personal best for her. Entering this meet, Wilson’s quickest effort was represented by the 24.74 from this same meet last year.

All 3 women now enter the world rankings in style, with C1 ranking as #2 this season behind rehabilitating Olympian Sarah Sjostrom of Sweden, while McKeon is now #3 in the world. Wilson is also among the world’s 10 best this season.

2020-2021 LCM Women 50 Free

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Additional Winners:

  • Lani Pallister was just off her season-best in the women’s 400m free, snagging gold in a time of 4:07.83. Kiah Melverton was right behind in 4:09.08.
  • The women’s 200m breast saw 23-year-old Bond swimmer Jenna Strauch get to the wall first, producing a new PB of 2:24.49. That outing overtook her previous career-fastest of 2:24.85 from last December’s Queensland Championships. She moves up from 13th to 11th in the season’s world rankings.
  • Mitch Larkin took on the tough 200m back/200m IM double this morning, clocking 1:57.16 in the former and 1:59.88 in the latter.

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5 months ago

Emma McKeon and Maggie MacNeil (NCAA) both with brilliant 100 fly times today. Can’t wait for the Olympic showdown with them plus S.Sjostrom too hopefully.

Reply to  Sam
5 months ago

And (at least) Zhang Yufei, plus the explosive teens (Curzan, Huske, Shkurdai, Pudar..). Flying race indeed..

Reply to  nuotofan
5 months ago

I think McKeon’s gonna need to drop her PB to keep up with the new wave that’s arrived. Pudar in particular looks like a monster in the making.

Last edited 5 months ago by Troyy
Reply to  Troyy
5 months ago

Yes at least 55 high to medal in Tokyo

Reply to  Troyy
5 months ago

Yes but I think she’ll be at 55 by July😊

Reply to  Sam
5 months ago

Love to see it happen but I’m more bullish on her PB prospects in her freestyle events (esp 50/100) as I think its her freestyle where she’s made the advances in recent years. Far from out of the question that she DOES pull out that kind of time, just that its been four years since she’s been down at 56low.

Reply to  commonwombat
5 months ago

I think Emma is capable, but I agree, while Emma’s freestyle has kept improving over the last few years, her Butterfly has not stagnated.

Corn Pop
Reply to  Troyy
5 months ago

Emma has shown she can go multiple top times per session including in morning finals. Its the latter which makes her swims outstanding .

Last edited 5 months ago by Corn Pop
5 months ago

Nice Swims, trials will be very quick!

5 months ago

Larkin’s swims were a very quick turn around, and it was still a solid 200 IM. I’m glad to see him trying out the double.

Another Joe
5 months ago

Anyone know what’s up with Horton?

McKeon and McKeown scorching 😮

Reply to  Another Joe
5 months ago

He’s never fast in season.

5 months ago

Australia need a breastroker for the medley relay – the other 3 legs looking very strong.

Stephen Loibl
Reply to  torchbearer
5 months ago

Agree……Anyone know where Titmus is….well her status.

Reply to  Stephen Loibl
5 months ago

Still not back to 100% after injury but she did compete at a small meet about a week ago where she went 4:06 in 400 free and 8:32 in 800 free.

About Retta Race

Retta Race

Swim analyst, businesswoman.

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