By Stephen J. Thomas
BRISBANE, Australia. September 27. AUSSIE sprint star Libby Lenton produced two impressive performances when she took the 100m free in 52.28 edging closer to Swede Therese Alshammar’s world record, just falling short by 0.11 of a second.
The 19-year-old Queenslander now holds three of the top five performances all-time over the short course distance. Lenton was back in the water shortly after to take the 50 fly in 26.21 – sixth fastest all-time global performer.
Olympian Shayne Reese produced a fine swim to take second in a PR 53.68 – third all-time Aussie performer – behind Lenton in the 100m free.
Lenton said after her race she had just concentrated on her own form during the race but admitted when questioned by SWIMINFO that having closer competition tonight may well have pushed her under the world mark. She said the world record will be in the back of her mind when she competes at the World Champs next month.
Dual Olympic silver medalist Brooke Hanson trimmed her own Aussie record for the 100m individual medley, touching in 1:00.32 – equal 10th all-time performance and edging out Shayne Reese, who had another good swim (PR 1:00.71). Hanson also qualified fastest for the final of the 100m breaststroke in 1:06.37 just in front of Jade Edmistone (1:06.45), the new world record-holder in the two-lap race.
Olympic relay silver medalist Nic Sprenger took the 400m freestyle in a PR 3:43.32 (sixth all-time Aussie performer) in the absence of his more illustrious teammates, world record-holder Grant Hackett and Ian Thorpe. Hackett and Thorpe hold all the ten best performances over this short course distance. AIS based Josh Krogh took second place in a PR 3:45.06.
National record-holder Jim Piper showed a return to form with an impressive win in the 200m breaststroke, touching in 2:06.63 – just 0.02 of a second outside his Aussie mark. Brenton Rickard, winner of the 100m race was second in a PR 2:07.60 (second fastest all-time Aussie performer), with Mark Riley third in 2:08.
Eighteen-year-old Leith Brodie clocked a PR 1:58.16 – equal 4th all-time Aussie performer – to win the 200m individual medley and edge out Olympian Adam Lucas (PR 1:59.25), the winner of the 400m IM.
Veteran Queensland sprinter Jeff English made a return to the top spot on the podium for the 50m free clocking an impressive PR 21.82, third all-time Aussie performer. Sydney based Jono Newton took second in 22.26.
Newcomer, Tayliah Zimmer swam a PR to win the women’s 200m backstroke in a World Championships qualifying time of 2:07.96. Zimmer has already qualified in the 100m race.
Olympian Linda Mackenzie won the women's 400m freestyle in 4:08.11, but finished outside the World Championships qualifying standard.