Halsall wins third medal of European Championships
Fran Halsall won her third medal of the European Championships in Budapest with silver in the Women’s 100m Butterfly and as medal number 13 for Great Britain it provides a best ever return from a European event with two days still to go.
British Swimming, powered by British Gas, claimed 13 medals four years ago as a best result but four gold medals so far in 2010 as opposed to two in 2006 means Britain have exceeded their previous benchmark.
And it was Halsall (British Gas ITC Loughborough) who delivered the telling performance in a new British Record of 57.40. Gold went to Sweden’s old Sarah Sjoestroem in 57.32 while Swede Therese Alshammar was third in 57.80.
Halsall did well to simply stick with the Swedes, who both had impressive starts, and then showed her strength off the wall at the turn to launch her attack and claim the silver.
However, it was a disappointed Halsall who desperately wanted the gold medal to prove how far she has come in an event she used to refer to as a “fun, warm up” race.
"I wanted the gold very much but I've got to be happy," said Halsall, "It was a personal best, a British Record and a really good swim but I still feel I could have taken the gold – maybe next time.
"Losing by eight hundredths of a second - I'll feel that for the next year's training, that'll be a lot of motivation. Just missing the gold is annoying.”
Stacey Tadd (University of Bath), who yesterday set a new English Record in the heats, finished seventh in the final of the Women's 200m breaststroke in a time of 2:28.84.
“I’m slightly disappointed to have gone slower tonight,” said Tadd. “My aim here was to go faster from heats to semis to final and I just missed that goal but this whole experience has been good for me and I can now look to the Commonwealth Games with more confidence.”
Antony James (Plymouth Leander) continued to impress in the Men’s 100m Butterfly and qualified seventh fastest for tomorrow’s final in a time of 52.70
"I'm looking to go into that final and gain some experience for 2012," said James. "These guys have all got a few years on me but the way I see it I've got six more years in me than they have."
Jo Jackson (British Gas ITC Loughborough) and Jazmin Carlin (British Gas ITC Swansea) both narrowly missed out on a place in the final of the Women’s 200m Freestyle finishing ninth and 12th overall.