As the 2012 Australian Olympic Swimming Trials roll into the last two days, the prelims sessions get pretty thin. In fact, there were only two Olympic prelims on Wednesday morning, which is the last morning session of the meet.
Women’s 50 Free – Prelims
With the pressure now off, Libby Trickett looked easy through to the 50 freestyle semifinals in 25.12, which made her the third-fastest in the prelims and the 2nd-fastest Australian.
The only Aussie better than her was 16-year old Alexandra Purcell in a lifetime-best of 25.02. She comes from the Southport Olympic Club, which is the same club that is also home to men’s Olympian Cameron McEvoy, as well as a number of other high-level young swimmers.
The 2nd-placed swimmer was Sweden’s Therese Alshammar in 25.06. She has been training in Australia (she is allowed only a prelims swim).
Behind those top three were Cate Campbell (25.16) and Bronte Campbell (25.25), as well as super-sprinter Yolane Kukla (25.34). Marieke Guehrer (25.39), Brittany Elmslie (25.48), and Melanie Schlanger (25.55) were also into the final. Alicia Coutts interestingly enough entered this 50 free, and qualified for the semi-final 12th in 25.53. That’s a lifetime best for her, though she’s only swum this race about twice in her professional career.
I like the enthusiasm of Coutts to swim the 50 free at the end of the meet when there’s nothing really to lose. I wish that we’d see that at every country’s Olympic Trials – just have everyone take a flier on the 50 free (unless they’re in the 200 back or 800 free), as it’s the only final on the last day of competition.
With the help of the scratches of international swimmers, Emma McKeon was able to sneak into the semi’s in 25.86.
There should be at least 4 or 5 under 25 seconds as soon as the semi-final of this race.
Men’s 1500 Free – Prelims
Nobody yet made the qualifying time in the prelims of this 1500 free, but Miami’s Matthew Levings won in an 8-second personal best of 15:17.75. The favorite, Bobby Hurley, took the 3rd seed in 15:32.08 – but he’s the only swimmer in this race who’s been under the Olympic cut. He was a rising star in 2010, before his 2011 season was derailed by a pharmacy mixup and pending drawn-out appeals process. It would be great to see him emerge and get a spot in London out of this race.
19-year old Wally Eggleton is the 4th seed in 15:34.17.