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Personal best for GB duet as they reach European Championships final

Great Britain’s artistic swimming duet Kate Shortman and Isabelle Thorpe achieved a new personal best in the European Aquatics Championships Artistic Swimming free duet preliminary round to qualify for the final.

Following on from the frustrations of the opening day which saw the technical duet final abandoned and rescheduled due to technical issues, the duet were focused on the second day of competition.

Shortman and Thorpe finished in eighth place with a total score of 85.0667, improving on their 2019 World Championships score.

The breakdown of their score saw the judges award 25.7000 for execution, 33.8667 for artistic impression and 25.5000 for difficulty.

The free duet final will take place on Friday 14 May.

Karen Thorpe, manager of artistic swimming for Swim England and British Swimming, said: “They swam with near perfect choreography and will work on their height and travel for the final on Friday.

“They coped really well after yesterday and had a good night’s sleep to put it behind them before they competed this morning.”

Shortman will compete in the solo free final on day three after booking her place on the opening day of the event.

The solo final will be followed by the team technical final in the afternoon, with the Great Britain team consisting of Isobel Blinkhorn, Millicent Costello, Daisy Gunn, Cerys Larsen, Aimee Lawrence, Daniella Lloyd, Robyn Swatman and Laura Turberville. Both Cerys Hughes and Isobel Davies named as reserves.

Karen added: “Kate is all set to enjoy her swim and pull out all the stops to see if she can gain a higher score and a better placing.

“The team will swim together for the first time since 2019 in the tech team event tomorrow afternoon.

“We have a young team that I have had a short time to prepare due to Covid and lockdown restrictions but have made great progress over the last couple of weeks and whilst we have been out here we have been working twice a day and utilising every minute to perfect their routine.”

Picture: DeepBlueMedia /@LENaquatics