MELBOURNE, Australia, January 9. As far as the future of American swimming goes, the five-day Victorian Championships provided positive results, courtesy of the United States National Junior Team. But, the meet also featured a number of stellar swims from the Australian contingent, a good sign considering that the Commonwealth Games Trials are just around the corner.
Headed for a breaststroke showdown with Leisel Jones and Jade Edmistone, Brooke Hanson put together a dynamite meet, as she corralled a quartet of victories. Aside from sweeping the three breaststroke events, Hanson claimed top honors in the 200 individual medley with a mark of 2:15.09. Her winning times in the breast disciplines were 31.14 (50), 1:07.87 (100) and 2:28.17 (200).
Hanson was followed in second place in the 200 I.M. by Shayne Reese, who hit the wall with an effort of 2:16.38. Reese, however, grabbed the top slot in the 100 and 200 freestyles, thanks to performances of 55.32 and 2:00.60. Another double winner on the female side was Danni Miatke, who took first in the 50 fly (27.15) and bested the competition in the 100 fly (1:00.49). At last summer’s World Championships in Montreal, Miatke earned gold in the 50 fly.
In men’s action, Olympian Matt Welsh was spectacular en route to a four-win showing. Welsh defeated his opposition in the three backstroke events and also prevailed in the 50 fly. Welsh covered the 50 back in 25.91 and delivered a swim of 54.80 in the 100 back. He added a 2:01.71 outing in the 200 back and popped a 23.96 mark in the 50 fly to edge Michael Klim (24.26).
Klim, a longtime fixture on the international scene, prepared for the Commonwealth Games Trials in strong fashion, as he picked up triumphs in the 100 free (50.05) and 100 fly (53.52). Klim was faster in each of his semifinal races, as he touched the wall in a quality 49.67 in the free and posted a 53.50 in the fly. Klim was also second in the 50 free, although his 23.03 was well off the sizzling 22.26 of Brett Hawke.
In other action, Haylee Reddaway was the winner of the women’s 400 free (4:11.52) and Giaan Rooney rolled to first in the 100 backstroke in 1:02.31.