Freya Anderson, Kieran Bird and James Guy set Tokyo Olympic standard during great start to British Swimming Selection Trials
Freya Anderson, Kieran Bird and James Guy all swam inside the Tokyo Olympic consideration time as University of Bath-based swimmers made an excellent start to the British Swimming Selection Trials at London’s Aquatic Centre.
Anderson, coached by David McNulty at the Team Bath Sports Training Village, was the first swimmer to set the standard at the Trials on Wednesday as she won the women’s 200m freestyle in 1:56.80 – well inside the consideration time of 1:57.28. Holly Hibbott was fourth in 1:58.41.
British Swimming National Centre Bath team-mate Bird, coached by Jol Finck, then produced an outstanding swim in the men’s 400m freestyle final, slicing four seconds off his pre-Trials personal best to claim victory in an Olympic qualifying time of 3:46.00 exactly. Mechanical Engineering student Tom Dean was runner-up in 3:47.48 and fellow University of Bath sporting scholar Luke Turley took fourth place in 3:49.66.
Men’s 400m Freestyle winner @kbird70 has a lot of love for all those who sadly can’t be supporting from the stands 🙏
— British Swimming (@britishswimming) April 15, 2021
It was double Rio 2016 Olympic medallist Guy’s time to shine on Thursday as he clocked a rapid 1:55.20 on his way to victory and the qualification standard in the men’s 200m butterfly.
“The time wasn’t really in my head because it’s not my main event but to go the qualifying time is a great start to the week,” said Guy, who was at world-record pace during the first half of the race. “I was talking to Dave [coach David McNulty] before, the target was 54.0 for the first 100m, so a 53 shows the speed is there.”
Jay Lelliott, a University of Bath Sports Performance graduate, dropped his personal best to 1:56.76 to finish runner-up to Guy.
Economics and Mathematics student Leah Crisp, who is supported by a Santander Scholarship, produced an assured performance to win women’s 800m freestyle gold in 8:44.67, some eight seconds clear of her nearest rival.
The men’s 800m final saw Bird continue his excellent Trials form with another big personal best of 7:50.75, which was just outside the Olympic consideration time but enough to earn him silver behind Daniel Jervis. Turley claimed the bronze medal in 7:54.27 and fellow Santander Scholar Will Ryley, coached by Mark Skimming on the University of Bath student swimming programme, was sixth in 8:04.85.
Sports Performance students Brodie Williams and Jono Adam both reached the men’s 100m backstroke final, where they finished fourth and sixth respectively in 54.90 and 55.22, and National Centre Bath swimmer Emily Large was fifth in the women’s 100m butterfly in 59.09.
Two students also contested the men’s 200m individual medley final, with Santander Scholar Jacob Greenow sixth in 2:01.64 and Mechanical Engineering student Cameron Brooker seventh in 2:03.72.
They are among 11 Bath-based swimmers in action on Friday as the Selection Trials continue, with plenty more racing on Saturday and Sunday too.
Pictures credit: Georgie Kerr, British Swimming