Flanders Cup provides University of Bath-based swimmers with early-season racing opportunities during Olympic year

21 January 2024

Members of the British Swimming Performance Centre Bath squad got in some good racing early in the Olympic season when they competed at the Flanders Cup in Antwerp, Belgium.

The meet gave the squad, who train at the Team Bath Sports Training Village, a short competitive break from their high-intensity training programme and was also a chance for Tom Dean and Jacob Whittle to warm up for their World Championships appearance in Doha next month.

Whittle took victory in both the 50m freestyle (22.73) and 100m freestyle (49.08), finishing just ahead of Dean in the latter race (49.14) with training partner Ed Mildred completing a Bath top three in 50.22.

Reigning Olympic Champion Dean was a clear winner in the 200m freestyle (1:46.35), finishing three seconds clear of team-mate Kieran Bird (1:49.70). Whittle was fourth in 1:50.69.

Tokyo Olympian Bird came out on top in an exciting 400m freestyle final, his winning time of 3:54.39 giving him the edge by four-tenths of a second.

Holly Hibbott also touched the wall first in her 400m freestyle final (4:16.00) and was joint fourth in the 50m butterfly (28.41).

Mildred, who was joint sixth in the 200m freestyle (1:51.71), won a tightly-contested 100m butterfly final (53.05) by three-hundredths of a second from training partner Jacob Peters, who went on to lead the way in the 50m butterfly (23.44).

Jono Adam claimed 100m backstroke victory (54.34) and was followed in third, fourth and fifth by Ivor Powell Sporting Scholar Cameron Brooker (55.10), Matt Ward (55.27) and US Foundation Scholar Jack Skerry (26.24).

That trio were also grouped together in the 200m backstroke with Brooker in second (2:00.92), Skerry third (2:02.47) and Ward fourth (2:02.77). The 50m backstroke saw Adam place third (25.73), Brooker fourth (25.96) and Skerry sixth (26.24).

Watch all the Flanders Swimming Cup racing on their YouTube channel at www.zwemfed.be/live-streaming-youtube.

Click here to find out more about the swimming programme at the University of Bath.

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