2020 QUEENSLAND CHAMPIONSHIPS
- Saturday, December 12th – Friday, December 18th (Day 1 is relays only; Days 5-8 are age group)
- Brisbane Aquatic Center
- LCM (50m)
- SwimSwam Meet Preview
- Entries/Live Results
- Live Stream ($)
Shaking off the racing cobwebs for some, while continuing their long course season for others, these championships represent a chance for Aussie swimmers to gauge where they’re at among the world’s best who are also gunning for confidence-boosting performances heading into the final Olympic preparation stretch.
We reported how 16-year-old McKeown put on a show of her own, ripping the world’s 2nd fastest 100m back performance of all-time with her monster 57.93. Additionally, she stuck around to threw down a massive 4:32.73 in the women’s 400m IM to become her nation’s 2nd fastest performer. You can read about both of those remarkable performances here.
In the men’s 100m back, it was 2015 two-time world champion Mitch Larkin who wound up on top, doing so with a statement swim of 52.75.
After notching a casual morning swim of 55.12, Larkin split 25.50/27.25 to post a time .02 faster than the 52.77 the Aussie produced for bronze at last year’s World Championships in Gwangju, Korea.
27-year-old St. Peters Western swimmer Larkin owns the Aussie national record in the 52.11 he crushed en route to taking both the 100m and 200m backstroke world titles in Kazan in 2015. For now, Larkin’s 52.75 registers as just the 2nd sub-53 second outing in the world this season, sitting behind Chinese swimmer Xu Jiayu’s 52.37.
Making noise in the women’s 200m free was 20-year-old Ariarne Titmus. The woman who owns the Aussie national record in 1:54.27 came into the wall tonight in 1:55.93 to snag the meet title by well over a second.
For a reward, Titmus not only snags gold here but she enters the world rankings as the #1 swimmer for the season, owning the only sub-1:56 outing. Leah Neale snagged silver in 1:57.33, while 18-year-old Lani Pallister rounded out the top 3 tonight in 1:58.33, a near-personal best.
The men’s 200m free was a much closer affair, with the top two finishers separated by just .10. Getting there first was 25-year-old Alexander Graham, with the man stopping the clock in a mighty 1:45.69. Just a hair behind was SPW standout Elijah Winnington who posted 1:45.79 as the runner-up.
For Graham, the Bond athlete opened in 51.56 and brought it home in 54.13 to produce his first-ever sub-1:46 result. Entering these Queensland Championships, Graham’s lifetime best rested at the 1:46.14 he logged at last year’s World Championships Trials.
As for Winnington, the former World Junior Record holder in this event settled for runner-up status in 1:45.79. This, too, represents the man’s first venture under the 1:46 barrier, with his outing tonight overtaking his previous PB of 1:46.13 from 2 years ago. That mark stood as the WJR until Korea’s Hwang Sun Woo took over with a phenomenal 1:45.92 earlier this season at just 17 years of age.
The duo of Graham and Winnington now rank as the top 2 swimmers in the world this season.
Of note, World Championships finalist Clyde Lewis placed 4th in 1:47.99 behind bronze medalist Jack McLoughlin‘s 1:47.42. Rackley teen Thomas Neill was also in the mix, placing 8th in 1:49.15, while Olympic silver medalist in this 2free, Mack Horton was last in 1:51.83.
Zac Stubblety-Cook proved his 2:07.28 200m breast from last year was no fluke, with the 21-year-old getting within range again this year. The 21-year-old Chandler athlete broke through for gold with a big-time 2:07.96.
This marks his 5th fastest time ever and further inserts his name into the growing list of would-be Olympic medal contenders for Tokyo next year.
Behind Arno Kamminga’s world-leading 2:06.85, Stubblety-Cook adds himself to the list of 6 men with 2:07’s so far this season.
The women’s 200m breast saw 23-year-old Bond swimmer Jenna Strauch reach the wall first in 2:24.85, while Mollie O’Callaghan clocked a new lifetime best of 54.25 to take the 100m free event for 16-year-old women.