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Kiwi Swanepoel and Aussie Schipper Set Blazing Fly Marks at Aussie Youth Olympics -- January 11, 2003

SYDNEY, January 11. THE Australian Youth Olympic Festival is supposed to be a stepping-stone to the Big O's themselves.

If that's the case, then Australia's Jessica Schipper and New Zealand's Carney Swanepoel both took giant steps here this evening toward a spot on the plane to Athens in 18 months.

The 16-year-old Schipper, affectionately dubbed
"Mouse" by her teammates and coaches for her small stature but speedy swimming, turned in a very impressive 59.95 100m fly clocking to win her second gold of the competition

The previously unheard-from Swanepoel, who was not ranked among the Top 200 in the world last season in the 100 fly (although he was among the Top 150 in short course meters), went a blazing 53.85 to win the men's race and establish himself as his nation's premier sprint flyer.

Swanepoel's time is not just his pr; it's also the New Zealand record. He broke the old mark of 54.29 by former Stanford NCAA champ Anthony Mosse, from the '89 Pan-Pacs in Tokyo!

America finally registered its first sweep of the Festival as 17-year-old Ian Clark, who swims for the Upper Main Line YMCA team in Pennsylvania and is the "kid" brother of current Penn State All-America Corrie (2001 Big 10 200 IM champ), led a one-two finish in the 200 back.

Clark touched in 2:03.74 with Raleigh Swimming's Matt McGinnis a close second (2:03.91). It was the first medal for either swimmer.

Schipper, who won the 200 fly opening-night with a pr 2:11.98, was chased home by the USA's Wildcat Aquatics' 13-year-old Elaine Breeden. She went a pr 1:00.09 for the silver.

Kentucky was also the home state of another prominent female flyer, a certain young lady who won three golds at the Games of the XXIII Olympiad in Los Angeles 19 years ago and who -- three years prior -- set world records in the 100-200 flys (57.93-2:05.96) that lasted well into the late '90s.

Her name? Mary T. Meagher, who developed under and had her greatest succees with Lakeside coach Bill Peak. She also trained for a spell under former U.S. National Technical Director Dennis Pursley when he guided the Cincinnati Marlins' team some 20-plus years ago.

Had Schipper swum her time last year she would have ranked 25th globally and been her country's No. 2 behind veteran Petria Thomas. As it is, she's only the third Aussie woman ever to break a minute for the 100 fly. The other two are Thomas and Olympic gold-medalist (200 free) Susie O'Neill, who's former wr-holder in the 200 fly.

Swanepoel's time, while not quite as good as Schipper's as far as a world ranking from last season goes, still would have put him higher on the list than such prominent swimmers as America's Nate Dusing(54.00), Yugoslavian (and now Cal freshman) Michael Cavic (54.00), Germany's Christian Keller (53.89) and former USC All-America Mike Williams (54.28).

The final American men's medal of the evening -- a golden one no less -- came in the 400 free relay, where the U.S. won in a meet record 3:24.86.

The victory may not have had the import of, say an Olympics or a World Championships, but inasmuch as Australia has won the last Olympics, World Championships and Pan-Pac sprint relay titles over Uncle Sam, the U.S. victory was as good as it gets.

"Even better than a day at Disneyland" in the words of anchor Kyle Bubolz, who came home in a fast 50.34.

Patriot Aquatics' Matt Grevers, already a double gold-medalist in the 100 back-free, led off in 51.10, faster than his 51.22 100 winner. He was followed by McGinnis (52.20), Wesley Flatt (51.22), and the redoubtable Kyle Bubolz.

Australia was disqualified when its anchor left early, moving Canada into the silver spot.
* * * * *

Australia picked up another women's gold when Belinda Wilson stroked to a 4:14.18 400 free triumph. American Whitney Hentzen (4:18.17) won the bronze.

The first tie occurred when New Zealand's Melissa Ingram and Japan's Hiro Tanaka touched in identical 2:15.85s in t he 200 back. USA's Molly Houlton (Ford AC) was third (2:16.42) while Terrapin SC's Lauren Rogers (2:19.49)was sixth.

-- Bill Bell




AUSTRALIAN YOUTH OLYMPIC FESTIVAL
SYDNEY OLYMPIC AQUATIC CENTER
SYDNEY, AUSTEALIA, JANUARY 11, 2003
50 M POOL
* Meet Record
RESULTS

BOYS

400 METER FREESTYLE

1 3:55.61*Travis Nederpelt, 85, AUS
2 3:56.81 Noa Sakamoto, 84, USA
3 3:58.90 Colin Russell, 84, CAN
4 3:59.87 Takehiro Miyajuma, 86, JPN
5 3:59.89 Ashley Semmens, 84, AUS
6 4:02.81 Arjun Haszard, 85, NZL
7 4:03.05 Judson Cuttino, 85,USA
8 4:08.94 Shaun Gardner, 85, NZL

200 METER BACKSTROKE

1 2:03.74 Ian Clark, 85, USA
2 2:03.91 Matt McGinnis, 86, USA
3 2:05.26 Matt Hawes, 86, CAN
4 2:06.18 Shouhei Uchida , 84, JPN
5 2:06.18 Kasaku Matsui ,84, JPN
6 2:08.45 Damian Braddock, 86, NZL
7 2:09.98 Callum Ng, 85, CAN
8 2:12.35 Chris Kirby, 86, AUS

100 METER BUTTERFLY

1 53.85* Carney Swanepoel, 86, NZL
2 54.44 Kyle Bubolz, 86, USA
3 55.62 Robert Sharp, 84, AUS
4 55.65 Syouta Yamamoto, 84, JPN
5 55.69 Nicholas Walkotten, 86, USA
6 55.93 Darryl Rudolf, 84, CAN
7 56.13 Shunsuke Fujii, 87, JPN
8 56.53 Henry Lee, 85, AUS

4X100 FREE RELAY

1 3:24.86*United States
2 3:27.38 Canada
3 3:31.14 New Zealand
4 3:38.32 Japan
ex 3:30.22 Australia B
ex 3:30.78 United States "B"
ex 3:38.24 Japana "B"
disq Australia

GIRLS

400 METRES FREESTYLE

1 4:14.18 Belinda Wilson, 84, AUS
2 4:15.61 Brittany Reimerr, 88, CAN
3 4:18.17 Whitney Hentzen, 86, USA
4 4:18.49 Yumi Kida, 85, JPN
5 4:20.43 Rebecca Linton, 85, NZL
6 4:21.60 Swinley Leslie Swinley, 88, USA
7 4:22.99 Melissa Mittchell, 87, AUS
8 4:25.85 Yoshimura Shiho Yoshimura, 87, JPN

200 METRES BACKSTROKE

1 2:15.85 Hiro Tanaka, 88, JPN
1 2:15.85 Melissa Ingram, 85, NZL
3 2:16.42 Molly Houlton, 88, USA
4 2:18.55 Karina Leane, 85, AUS
5 2:19.00 Kelly Newcombe, 85, NZL
6 2:19.49 Lauren Rogers, 87, USA
7 2:21.40 Hanna Kubas, 85, CAN
8 2:22.92 Nicole Seah, 86, AUS

100 METRES BUTTERFLY

1 59.95*Jessica Schipper, 87, AUS
2 1:00.09 Elaine Breeden, 89, USA
3 1:02.30 Kozue Watanabe, 86, JPN
4 1:02.75 Charnelle Cunningham, 84, AUS
5 1:02.80 Margo McCawley, 86, USA
6 1:03.10 Ayaka Okumura, 86, JPN
7 1:03.88 Joan Bernier, 84, CAN
8 1:04.54 Porenta Jennifer Porenta, 85, CAN

4X100 FREE RELAY

1 3:49.34 Australia
2 3:49.39 Canada
3 3:51.77 United States
4 3:54.79 New Zealand
5 3:59.94 Japan
ex 3:57.33 United States "B"
ex 3:59.75 Australia "B"
ex 4:00.37 Japana "B"


Gold Silver Bronze Total
AUS
12 5 5 22
USA 4 7 11 22
JPN 4 3 1 8
CAN 3 8 5 16
NZL 1 1 2 4

24 24 24 72