Seebohm swims to 25th National title and a slice of short course history
Emily Seebohm has tonight eclipsed Matt Welsh as Australia’s most successful Australian Short Course swimmer, winning her 25th National title in Adelaide.
The 25-year-old triple Olympian and five-time world champion, added her third victory of the Hancock Prospecting Australian Short Course Championships in the 100m backstroke.
It took Seebohm past Sydney 2000 Olympic backstroke medallist Welsh, who won 24 titles between 1997 and 2007.
And in another record breaking night at the SA Aquatic Centre, last night’s world record setter Cate Campbell added the Commonwealth record in a sizzling 50m freestyle showing.
Campbell clocked the third fastest time in history – just 0.26 outside Dutch swimmer Ranomi Kromowidjojo’s world mark of 22.93 set on August 7 this year and the previous record of 23.10 set by Sweden’s Sarah Sjostrom, the week before.
In another Simon Cusack sprint trifecta, 18-year-old rising star Shayna Jack squeezed in between the Campbell girls in a personal best time and sixth fastest time by an Australian in 24.01 with Bronte Campbell a fingernail behind in third in 24.03.
Seebohm’s win tonight in 56.80 followed her previous wins in the 200m backstroke and the 100m individual medley and a silver in her first 400m individual medley.
And she was kept honest by her 17-year-old Brisbane Grammar training partner Minna Atherton (57.07) and 16-year-old Kaylee McKeown (USC Spartans) 57.11.
Tomorrow Seebohm gets the chance to extend her tally again with the 200m individual medley and the 50m backstroke still to come.
Her first titles came in 2009 with the 50 and 100m backstroke and 100 and 200 IM doubles and it was the start of what has been a stellar short course career – winning medals across an unprecedented nine events.
And there is no sign of her stopping any time soon with plans to contest the Asian Cluster of the FINA World Cups before the end of the year.
She will then set her sights on next year’s Gold Coast Commonwealth Games and she plans to train up until 2020 and try and emulate the great Leisel Jones and make her fourth Olympic team.
“I didn’t realise it was so many, it is definitely very exciting and I’ve worked really hard and I didn’t really come into this (meet) with a goal of getting more National Short Course titles,” said Seebohm.
“I came here for some hard training and you saw that last night when I did over one kilometre in racing which is unusual for me, but it definitely helps toughen you up.
“It’s good to come here and do some stuff you don’t normally do and I guess to experience another level of fatigue and tiredness; it is definitely hurting me today but it’s all part of the game.
“The backstroke is so young it feels like when I made the team back in 2007.
“They definitely keep me on my toes and keep pushing me.
“I get to train with Minna Atherton and get to race someone of that level all the time.
“I love doing the World Cups and I’ve got another one of those in two weeks and I’m looking forward to that and then finish out the year and look forward to Commonwealth Games next year.
“All my focus is on next February and Games Trials and I actually got announced as one of the Queens Baton Relay runners so I’m super excited about that.
“I’m kind of taking every year as it comes. I have said I definitely want to train until 2020 and try and make that team.
“I want to be like Leisel Jones and be one of the best Australians ever seen and go to four Olympics – there (would be) nothing better.”
Among the highlights in the Multi Class events tonight were wins to Jack Ireland S14 (UQ Swim) and Jasmine Greenwood S10 (Bay and Basin) 1:02.47 in the 100m freestyle; a world record in the 100m freestyle toBraeden Jason S13 (USC Spartans) 53.27(WR) and a sizzling time to Rowan Crothers (Yeronga Park) who became the first Australian Multi Class swimmer to break 50 seconds for 100m freestyle, with his 49.84.
In other highlights, Rio Olympian Travis Mahoney broke through for two Australian titles, winning the 200m backstroke (1:52.54) when he defeated Japan’s Daiya Seto (1:53.93) before Seto turned the tables in the 200m individual medley – with the boy from Marion awarded the title and Seto a gold medal.
It followed his bronze medal last night in the all-Marion finish behind Olympic champion Kyle Chalmers and Andrew Abood in the 100m freestyle.
In one of the most exciting swims of the night, Carlile’s Zachary Attard took full advantage of tonight’s 200m freestyle field to out-touch Jorden Merrilees (Melbourne Vicentre) and Josh Parrish (TSS Aquatics).
Attard, with his Carlile teammates cheering madly from the pool deck clocked 1:45.89 to Merrilees 1.45.99 and Parrish’s 1:46.95.
Parrish and his team had revenge later in the night in another “down to the wire” finish which saw TSS Aquatics win the 4x200m freestyle relay.
It was Parrish who out-touched Attard with TSS claiming the title in 7:14.13 to Carlile’s 7:14.19.
The women’s 200m breaststroke saw Olympic finalist Taylor McKeown touch first in 2:20.55 – just outside her best time and ahead of 100m winner Jess Hansen (Nunawading) 2:23.50 and Tessa Wallace (Pelican Waters) 2:23.77.
Action begins at 11 am daily for the heats sessions with finals kicking off at 7pm each evening.