‘Fearless’ Swim England Junior Squad swimmers shine on day one in EdinburghMarch 11, 2022
Swim England Junior Squad swimmers shone on day one of the Edinburgh International Swim Meet alongside some stand out swims from Olympic athletes.
The squad of youngsters achieved a total of 14 top three finishes across the junior and B finals of the competition.
Performances from 18-year-old George Smith and 19-year-old Fleur Lewis were some of the notable swims.
Richard Blackshaw, Swim England head of swimming talent, said the squad showed ‘fearlessness’ on the opening day of action.
“The team have been outstanding. They are all learning and gaining great experience,” he said.
“All of the team swam quicker in the finals session than in the heats, with many swimmers stepping up and showing a great level of fearlessness.”
Smith doubles up with phenomenal swim
Smith was the fastest qualifier going into the B final of the Men’s 200m Breaststroke and the race saw a closely fought battle between him and Edinburgh’s Ross Young.
The Swim England athlete was too strong on the final 50m and touched the wall in 2:17.89, with Young settling for second place in a time of 2:19.36. Swim Ireland’s Eoin Corby was the next to touch in 2:20.96.
After his efforts in the breaststroke event, it wasn’t long before Smith was back in the water competing in the junior final of the 200m Individual Medley.
He backed up his breaststroke win with a phenomenal performance which saw him improve his heats time by a couple of seconds.
Smith finished in a time of 2:06.90, nearly three seconds clear of his nearest rival, to take first place. Millfield’s Solomon Williams was the closest with his time of 2:09.61.
In the open final of the 200m Breaststroke, James Wilby led from start to finish. He went out strong and although his Loughborough teammate Greg Butler finished well, he couldn’t beat the Olympic silver medallist.
Their times were 2:10.83 and 2:11.52 respectively and Plymouth Leander’s Adam Chillingworth (2:14.15) won the race for third place.
In the junior final, Swim England’s Elliot Woodburn took a commanding lead but was pushed all the way by Isaac Hall.
Woodburn’s time of 2:24.32 was enough to secure the win, followed by Hall (2:24.83) in second and his Borough of Stockton teammate Arthur Llewellyn (2:25.27) in third.
Perfect timing from Lewis
The Women’s 200m Butterfly B final saw Lewis of the Swim England Junior Squad time her swim to perfection as she pipped Millfield’s Kat Price to the touch in 2:15.78. Price finished in 2:16.13.
Lewis battled it out in the centre lanes with fellow Swim England swimmer, Lucy Fox, who was the eventual third place finisher in 2:16.99.
Keanna Macinnes took the win in the open final in a time of 2:11.34.
Bath’s Emily Large was chasing her down in the 50m but had to settle for second place with 2:11.59, followed by Ciara Schlosshan in third (2:13.77).
Battle of the Olympians
It was stacked open final in the Men’s 200m Freestyle as James Guy, Tom Dean and Duncan Scott went head-to-head.
Olympic champion Dean powered home down the final 50m to clock in at 1:47.60. Scott finished in a time of 1:48.59 to secure second place and Guy’s 1:48.74 saw him take third.
There was just 0.21 seconds between first and third place in the B final, but Olympic gold medallist Matthew Richards was the quickest to the touch.
His time of 1:50.64 saw him finish just ahead of young Jacob Whittle (1:50.84), who was also fingertips ahead of Jakob Goodman (1:50.85), which decided the second and third places.
Swim England’s Reuben Rowbotham-Keating finished in second place in the junior final, dropping around a second under his time from the heats.
Lara Thomson wins junior freestyle final
It was a one-two for the Swim England Junior Squad in the junior final of the Women’s 400m Freestyle as Lara Thomson improved on her qualifying time by almost five seconds to take the win.
She finished in a time of 4:20.48 with her teammate Leah Schlossan taking second place (4:22.23) and Swim Ireland’s Grace Hodgins managed a time of 4:25.73 for third.
The two Freya’s, Anderson and Colbert, battled it out in the open final after they opened up a comfortable lead.
It was the former, Anderson, who found an extra gear down the home straight to touch first in 4:12.30.
Nova Centurion’s Colbert (4:12.92) was almost two and a half seconds quicker than Bath’s Leah Crisp (4:15.34), who finished in third.
Tamryn Van Selm was the stronger of the B final swimmers as she finished in top spot with 4:17.42.
Swim England’s Beatrice Varley was leading for parts of the race but a drop in pace saw her move into second. However, a strong overall swim resulted in a time of 4:18.23.
In third was Loughborough’s Marion Hanquet with a time of 4:18.67.
Brilliant swim from Iona Colbert
It was a close finish in the B final of the Women’s 100m Backstroke as Swim England Junior swimmer Iona Colbert finished brilliantly to clinch third place.
Her time of 1:03.61 was only 0.01 ahead of her teammate Evie Dilley and just 0.28 outside first place, which went to Amelia Robertson (1:03.33). Holly McGill clocked a time of 1:03.45 for second.
In the open final, Kathleen Dawson took first place with her time of 1:01.04, but she was followed closely right until the touch.
Louise Hansson wasn’t far behind as she took second place in 1:01.47 and third place went to Lauren Cox (1:01.50).
Swim England Junior swimmer Sophie Bromley won the junior final in a time of 1:04.45.
Top two spots for Bath
It was a one-two finish for Bath in the Men’s 100m Backstroke open final as Jonathon Adam and Brodie Williams took the top spots.
Adam got the better of his teammate, clocking in at 55.15, with Williams 0.32 behind.
In third with his traditional late surge was Scottish swimmer, Craig McNally (55.58).
Nick Pyle held on to take the win in the B final with a time of 56.15. He was followed closely by the two Spanish swimmers Adrian Santos Martin and Pedro Sanchez Castillo who finished in second and third respectively.
Robbie Hemmings, representing the Swim England Junior Squad, swam a solid time of 56.47 to be crowned the junior champion. He finished in for fourth place in the B final.
Close finish in the women’s breaststroke
Imogen Clark and Sarah Vasey set a quick pace down the first 50 metres of the Women’s 100m Breaststroke open final, but the pair were beaten to the wall by Edinburgh’s Kara Hanlon.
There was just 0.04 between Hanlon and Vasey, with the Scottish athlete clocking in at 1:08.34.
Clark wasn’t far behind with her time of 1:08.93 proving enough to seal third place.
The top six swimmers from the B final all bettered their times from the heats as Lily Booker claimed victory in a time of 1:10.25.
In the junior final, Caitlin Lansom improved her heats time by almost one and a half seconds to take the top spot. Her convincing win saw her touch the wall in 1:11.40.
New personal best in the 1500m
Loughborough’s Toby Robinson was the fastest qualifier with a time of 15:01.35 going into the 1500m event.
But it was the international swimmer, 18-year-old Carlos Garach Benito of Spain, who achieved a new personal best as he bettered his qualifying time to win the race in a time of 15:14.01.
Bath’s Luke Turley finished in second place, clocking in at 15:18.91, with Robinson taking third (15:23.97).
Main picture: Scottish Swimming Twitter