Friday, 17 January saw the opening night of the 2020 Hancock Prospecting WA Swimming Championships take place at HBF Stadium. With some incredible performances from some of Australia’s greatest talents, the stadium was full of excitement for what lays on the horizon in 2020.
Some of this evening’s highlights include:
Event 2 – Men’s 400m Freestyle
Distance King, Ben Roberts (Breakers, c: Bud McAllister, WAIS) flexed his muscles as he emphatically opened his campaign. Roberts was pushed early by Ashton Brinkworth (UWA-West Coast, c: Michael Palfery, WAIS) but by the halfway point it was clear, Roberts was head and shoulders above the field. Roberts went on to finish in 3:53.71, the fastest time he has ever raced in season. Adam Sudlow (UWA-West Coast, c: Michael Shaw) finished in second in 3:58.88 and Hugh Moran (UWA-West Coast, c: Michael Shaw) claimed bronze in 4:01.46.
Event 106 - Women’s 50m Backstroke Multi-Class
Spectators were treated to a masterclass, as Para Swimming Royalty, Yip Pin Xiu (Singapore) powered home to take Gold in the Women’s 50m Backstroke Multi-Class. Pin Xiu, who is a three-time Paralympic Gold Medallist and World Record holder finished her race in 1:05.28, which was just outside her personal best. Pin Xiu is aiming to qualify for her fourth Paralympic in 2020 and has chosen to open her campaign at the 2020 Hancock Prospecting WA Swimming Championships.
Event 4 - Men’s 200m Butterfly
The Men’s 200m Butterfly saw a cracking race, with several competitors swimming lifetime best times. From the gun, Grant Irvine (UWA-West Coast, c: Michael Palfery, WAIS) was out strong, leading the field through in 27.15. However, going into the 3rd 50m the race had been set up for a fantastic finish as Kieren Pollard (North Coast, c: Ian Mills) and Nic Brown (UWA-West Coast, c: Michael Palfery, WAIS) made their presence known. With Pollard leading into the final turn, Brown maximised his turn and under-water skills to put himself in a position to claim the state title. On the touch, Brown held off the fast-finishing Pollard to finish in 2:00.65 and 2:00.96 respectively with David Schlicht (MLC Aquatic, c: Nick Veliades) finishing 3rd in 2:04.48.
Event 7 – Women’s 100m Freestyle
The blue-ribbon event for the 2020 Hancock Prospecting WA Swimming Championships once again did not disappoint with a spectacular field battling for the Gold. Not to any surprise, Brianna Throssell (UWA-West Coast, c: Michael Palfery, WAIS) was too strong once again cruising to yet another State Title in the 100m Freestyle. Throssell was incredibly fast through the first 50m, turning with almost two body lengths ahead of second place. Throssell’s fast start enabled her to display dominance through the second 50m as she stormed home to touch in 54.90. Kiah Melverton (TSS Aquatic, c: Chris Nesbit) took 2nd and Olivia Lefoe (MLC Aquatic, c: Nick Veliades) claimed 3rd.
Event 11 – Women’s 800m Freestyle
Spectators were treated to a picture-perfect performance from Kiah Melverton (TSS Aquatic, c: Chris Nesbit) in the Women’s 800m Freestyle as she cruised to victory, finishing in 8:40.17. Melverton, an Australian Dolphin team member has achieved success in this event on the highest level and was able to push the WA distance swimmers as she swam to Gold. Melverton, who is currently on a training camp in Western Australia has a huge programme throughout the Championships will allow WA swimmers a chance to race the best Australia has to offer. Claiming silver in the 800m Freestyle was Teegan Watson (UWA-West Coast, c: Michael Shaw) and with Ruby Knott (UWA-West Coast, c: Michael Shaw) claiming Bronze.
Event 13 – Women’s 4x100m Medley Relay
The final event of this evening’s proceeding saw a spectacular race between some powerhouse clubs. Victorian-based team, MLC Aquatic were out incredibly fast through a stellar performance by Olivia Lefoe, however, an incredible leg from Talara-Jade Dixon saw St Hilda’s shoot forward into first. The race began to tighten as UWA-West Coast swam into second thanks to the efforts of Brianna Throssell, however, St Hilda’s proved too strong as Grace Hull powered home to win Gold in 4:22.46. UWA-West Coast claimed Silver, with MLC Aquatic finishing 3rd.
With the conclusion of night 1, Swimmers, Coaches, Officials and Spectators now turn their attention to day 2 of the Championships with many events ready to be raced.
After Night 1’s display, there is no doubting there will be no place better to spend your Saturday Evening then watching some of Swimming Australia’s best swimmers prepare for Tokyo 2020.
Tickets are available at the door for $3.60 with action starting at 6:00 pm.
Congratulations to the State Champions for Night 1 of 2020 Hancock Prospecting WA Swimming Championships:
Ben Popham (Arena, c: Simon Redmond) Men’s 50m Freestyle Multi-Class
Jordan Berryman (UWA-West Coast, c: Ryan Spencer) Women’s 50m Freestyle Multi-Class
Holly Barratt (Rockingham, c: Will Scott, WAIS) Women’s 50m Butterfly
Ben Roberts (Breakers, c: Bud McAllister, WAIS) Men’s 400m Freestyle
Winson Chen (UWA-West Coast, c: Rob Palfery) Men’s 100m Breaststroke Multi-Class
Talara-Jade Dixon (St Hilda’s, c: Deb Jones) Women’s 100m Breaststroke
Nic Brown (UWA-West Coast, Michael Palfery, WAIS) Men’s 200m Butterfly
Alex Milligan (UWA-West Coast, Michael Palfery, WAIS) Men’s 50m Breaststroke
Brianna Throssell (UWA-West Coast, Michael Palfery, WAIS) Women’s 100m Freestyle
Ashton Brinkworth (UWA-West Coast, Michael Palfery, WAIS) Men’s 100m Freestyle
Tegan Reder (Victoria Park) Women’s 100m Breaststroke Multi-Class
Jack Perry (Manjimup Marlins) Men’s 50m Backstroke Multi-Class
Alyssa Burgess (Arena, c: Simon Redmond) Women’s 200m Backstroke
Teegan Watson (UWA-West Coast, c: Michael Shaw) Women’s 800m Freestyle
Joshua Edwards-Smith (UWA-West Coast, c: Michael Shaw) Men’s 50m Backstroke
UWA-West Coast Men’s 4x100m Medley Relay
St Hilda’s Women’s 4x100m Medley Relay