Now Under Michael Bohl, Kaylee McKeown Set To Race At Vic Open


  • Friday, February 18th – Sunday, February 20th
  • Melbourne Sports Centre (MSAC)
  • LCM (50m)
  • Psych Sheet

The annual Victorian Open is about to get underway in Melbourne, Australia, with several notable Olympians expected to race.

Leading the pack is 20-year-old Kaylee McKeown, who is entered in the women’s 50m/100m/200m backstroke, 50m free and 200m IM.

Through Tokyo 2020, where McKeown wound up hauling home 4 medals, including 3 golds, she had been training as a USC Spartan under coach Chris Mooney. Mooney has since left the Sunshine Coast and is now at the helm at Bond.

After having tried out several coaches, including considering following Mooney, McKeown settled on storied mentor Michael Bohl at Griffith. Bohl has the likes of Emma McKeon and Emily Seebohm under his tutelage, with the squad representing a super group among several Australian training hotbeds.

Joining McKeown is her apparent boyfriend Brendon Smith, who just moved from Nunawading to Griffith. Smith pulled a major surprise in Tokyo by winning bronze in the men’s 400m IM.

21-year old Smith placed just a tenth behind American Jay Litherland for silver. That made him just the second Australian man ever, and first since Rob Woodhouse at the 1984 Games, to medal in the 400 IM at the Olympic Games.

Matthew Wilson is entered in the breaststroke events here at the Vic Open, giving us our second glimpse of the former 200m breast World Record holder since Tokyo.

Wilson competed last month at the NSW Senior State Age Championships, clocking long course times of 28.14 in the 50m breast, 1:02.20 in the 100m and 2:15.66 in the 200m. For perspective, Wilson’s lifetime best and former WR stands at the 2:06.67 he logged at the 2019 FINA World Championships.

Additional racers entered here include Holly Barratt, David Morgan, Chelsea Gubecka, Alex Graham, Brad Woodward, William Petric and Sam Williamson.


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1 year ago

“Joining McKeon is her apparent boyfriend Brendon Smith,”
This should be McKeown. Not McKeon

1 year ago

she just went 2:04.64 in the 200 back – faster than she was in tokyo

Reply to  McKeown-Hodges-McKeon-Campbell
1 year ago

Was definitely not expecting that 😮

Reply to  McKeown-Hodges-McKeon-Campbell
1 year ago

This is HUGE news! She is just incredible, and aren’t we loving it 😊

1 year ago

Don’t forget Michael Bohl also coached Stephanie Rice to three Gold medals in 2008 in Beijing!

Reply to  Gheko
1 year ago

Yeah Bohl is very accomplished indeed… where Dean Boxall learnt his craft I think? Just not sure the word “settled” is the right word to use when it comes to McKeown choosing Bohl over other coaches.

About Retta Race

Retta Race

Former Masters swimmer and coach Loretta (Retta) thrives on a non-stop but productive schedule. Nowadays, that includes having just earned her MBA while working full-time in IT while owning French 75 Boutique while also providing swimming insight for BBC.

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