Capital Swimmers in Europe with the Aquablacks

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As part of their preparations for the world swimming champs in Barcelona in July our Capital swimmers have been competing in the two of the three meets that make up the annual Mare Nostrum series – named after the ancient Roman name for the Mediterranean Sea – the first in Barcelona and the second in Canet. And they’ve been doing very well.

In Barcelona, Gareth Kean, who qualified fastest, got a strong start in the final of the 100m backstroke to grab the advantage at the turn, and held off the Spaniard Aschwin Wildeboer for the gold in a tight contest, clocking a solid 54.70. He also claimed silver in the 200m backstroke. A few days later on the first night of swimming in Canet he clocked 54.95 to be second in the 100m backstroke to Frenchman Jeremy Stravius, the fastest man in the world this year, who won in a slick 53.19. On the second night in Canet in the 200 backstroke, Gareth clocked 1:59.12, a more than useful time, to claim gold after finishing fifth in the 50m backstroke final earlier in the night.

Also in Barcelona Samantha Lucie-Smith was an excellent fifth in the 400m freestyle in 4:15.49, and in Canet she topped that with her first podium of the series with a bronze in the women’s 200m freestyle in a personal best 1:58.62 behind world championship short course gold medalists Katinka Hosszu (HUN) and Melanie Costa (ESP).

In Barcelona, Samantha Lee was seventh in the 200m butterfly in 2:16.12 (2:15.22 prelims) and ninth in the 50 butterfly in 27.82. In Canet she won the B Final of the 100m butterfly in Canet 1:00.35, a time that would have placed her seventh in the A final.

Emma Robinson was eighth in the 800m freestyle in a time of 9:02.26 in the pool and then in the open water events was sixth in the 5 km swim in a time of 1:03:52 and the following day thirteenth in the 10 km swim  in a time of 2:02:15.

Well done to all our swimmers who are now in Saint Cugat to train until 4 July when they meet up with the others and fly to Vichy for the 2013 Open de France de Nation. Then they will have 2 weeks in Castellon training before the World Champs.