More relay delight as Britain's women secure bronzeJuly 7, 2022
Britain’s Women’s 4x200m Freestyle team took bronze on day three of the European Junior Championships.
On a day where a number of British swimmers turned strong Semi-Final displays into finals places it was the relay team in the final event of the day that brought Britain that elusive medal.
The team of Hollie Widdows, Emma Croker, Ashleigh Baillie and Erin Little swam their hearts out to edge out the Spanish team in what was a close battle for the bronze medal.
Britain were in the medal hunt right from the off with Widdows getting off the blocks quickly in the opening leg, taking the lead at the 50m stage.
She dropped to third by the end of the opening leg as the Hungarian and Italian teams stormed into a dominant position which they held for the rest of the race.
Britain held on to bronze well, with impressive middle legs from both Croker and Baillie to keep the team within a second of Spain in the bronze medal showdown.
That left Little to bring the team home for the final leg which she did in some style, beating the Spanish swimmer to the wall by 0.92.
The overall time for Great Britain was 8:13:42 with Hungary taking gold in a near record time of 7:59:04.
It’s Britain’s fourth medal of the championships following the two medals they won yesterday and the relay silver they took on day one.
Okaro just misses out on medal
Eva Okaro’s impressive swim was in vain as she just missed on a bronze medal in the Women’s 50m Freestyle Final.
Okaro finished sixth with a time of 25:46 but in an incredibly close race was just 0.07 off the final podium place.
It was a big improvement for the Sevenoaks swimmer who knocked 0:28 off her time of 25:74 from her time in yesterday’s Semi-Final.
She only qualified eighth fastest with that swim yesterday so an improvement to sixth means it was a strong swim despite just falling short of a medal place.
Sixth for Smith
George Smith is the sixth fastest junior in Europe in the Men’s 200m Individual Medley after his time of 2:03:78 in the final.
Smith swam well but was just 1:01 off a medal place as he had to settle for sixth fastest.
The Leamington swimmer was slow out of the blocks but recovered well to climb from eight to sixth in the second half of the race.
He finished incredibly strongly with the fastest final 50m of anyone in the race which will bode well for him going into future competitions.
McGill and Dilley qualify third and fourth fastest
Sensational swims from both Holly McGill and Evie Dilley saw them qualify as the third and fourth fastest swimmers for the Women’s 200m Backstroke Final.
The pair both finished as runners-up in each of the two semi-finals with the duo looking in a strong position for a medal tomorrow.
McGill was slightly faster than her teammate setting a 2:12:67 compared to Dilley’s 2:12:81.
Their times were over a second short of Hungary’s Dora Mulnar who was fastest with a time of 2:11:24.
The pair were comfortably quicker than Spain’s Estella Tonraht Nollgen who was fifth fastest leaving them in prime position to fight for a medal tomorrow.
Painter wins 50m Freestyle Semi-Final
Alexander Painter won his Semi-Final as qualified second fastest overall in the Men’s 50m Freestyle.
Painter finished with a time of 22:61 which was second fastest to Romania’s David Popovici.
The Romanian set a time of 22:17 in a dominant display.
Millfield swimmer Painter is looking to add to the silver medal he won as part of Britain’s 4x100m Freestyle Relay team on day one of the competition.
British pair make Breastroke final
Britain’s Sienna Robinson and Charlotte Bianchi both made it through to the Women’s 200m Breastroke final.
Robinson particularly impressed, finishing with the second quickest overall time of 2:27:52.
That placed her just 0.52 off the fastest time of the day leaving her in prime position for a medal in tomorrow’s final.
An excellent swim from Bianchi also saw her make it to the final as the eighth fastest overall swimmer.
She got her hands on the last qualification place with a time of 2:31:04 as she finished fourth in her semi-final.
Smith and Freeman both make final
George Smith didn’t have much time to rest after his efforts in the 200m Individual Medley final as he was back in the water for the Semi-Finals of the Men’s 200m Breastroke.
Smith performed well, despite the lack of rest, qualifying as the second fastest swimmer overall with a time of 2:14:86.
Swimming in the faster of the two semi-finals, Smith just edged out Austria’s Luka Mladenovich for second by just 0.01 in a time that would’ve won the other semi-final.
Harvey Freeman also performed well to make the final.
He was the seventh fastest swimmer overall finishing in a time of 2:16:10.
Ward and Hemmings just fall short
Robbie Hemmings and Matthew Ward missed out on making the Men’s 200m Backstroke Final after finishing just outside the qualifying times in their semi-final swims.
Hemmings came closest, setting a time of 2:01:83 in the second semi-final to make him the eleventh fastest swimmer overall, just missing out on a place as a reserve for the final.
Ward wasn’t too much further back finishing in a time 2:02:76.
Both British swimmers improved on their times set in the preliminary round in the morning session with Hemmings setting a 2:01:90 and Ward finishing in 2:03:06.
Photo from LEN Aquatics.