AUCKLAND, New Zealand, April 15. NEW Zealand is putting a major focus on the Pan Pacific championships this summer, allowing its small international racing squad to be in peak form to race the best from the United States, Australia, Japan, Canada and other countries in August.
Swimming New Zealand announced that the 16 swimmers competing at the Commonwealth Games in Scotland in late July will also travel to the Gold Coast in Australia in mid-August for the Pan Pacific championships. It could be a strong showing at both meets for the Kiwis, with Lauren Boyle poised to lead the charge in both competitions.
Boyle’s biggest challenge will come at the Pan Pacific meet, where American Katie Ledecky is likely to race Boyle in distance freestyle. Boyle was third in the 400, 800 and 1500 freestyles at last summer’s world championships.
Glenn Snyders will be a medal contender in both meets in the breaststroke events to give a boost to men’s swimming in New Zealand. Snyders will face tough competition in both meets but could find himself on multiple medal podiums this summer.
“The Commonwealth Games is very important to us for sure and is a first major focus,” said Swimming New Zealand High performance director Luis Villanueva. “The Pan Pacific Championships is our toughest international competition behind the world championships and will present us with a real test of where we sit in the world two years out from the Rio Olympics.”
“This will be a challenge for swimmers from Commonwealth countries to peak for Glasgow and then perform three weeks later in Australia. We will need to prepare very thoroughly and monitor our swimmers closely after the Commonwealth Games.”
Full New Zealand roster for Commonwealth Games and Pan Pacific championships
Lauren Boyle, Mitchell Donaldson, Dylan-Dunlop Barrett, Gabrielle Fa’amausili, Bobbi Gichard, Tash Hind, Ewan Jackson, Steven Kent, Samantha Lee, Samantha Lucie-Smith, Corey Main, Kane Radford, Matthew Stanley, Emma Robinson, Glenn Snyders, Charlotte Webby