British Short Course Grand Prix: Flash! Annamay Pierse Lowers 200 Breast World Record; Canada Breaks 800 Free Relay Mark

LEEDS, Great Britain, August 7. AT the British Short Course Grand Prix, Annamay Pierse lowered her own world record in the women's 200 breast. Meanwhile, Canada's men's team broke the 800 free relay global standard.

Pierse smoked the course with a 2:16.83 to lower her world record of 2:17.50 set in March.

Here are the comparative splits:
Today: 31.37, 1:05.68 (34.31), 1:41.42 (35.74), 2:16.83 (35.41)
March: 31.36, 1:05.96 (34.60), 1:41.51 (35.55), 2:17.50 (35.99)

Fellow Canadians Martha McCabe (2:23.23) and Hanna Pierse (2:24.63) completed the top three.

Meanwhile, the Canadian foursome of Colin Russell (1:43.60), Stefan Hirniak (1:43.41), Brent Hayden (1:41.49) and Joel Greenshields (1:42.55) took the world record in the men's 800 free relay with a time of 6:51.05. The swim destroyed the 6:52.66 set by Australia in 2007. Kirk Palmer (1:43.12), Grant Hackett (1:42.75), Grant Brits (1:44.01) and Kenrick Monk (1:42.78) came together for the former global mark.

Canada's Tanya Hunks opened the night with a winning time of 8:22.75 in the women's 800 free. Cassandra Patten finished second in 8:30.96, while Canada's Lindsay Seemann took third in 8:31.31.

Canada's Paul Kornfeld took a run at Cameron van der Burgh's world record of 56.88 in the men's 100 breast, but settled for a scorching time of 57.10. The performance blasted the Canadian record of 58.48 set by Scott Dickens in March and is the top short course time by any swimmer from the Americas. Brazil's Henrique Barbosa placed second in 58.13, lowering Felipe Lima's national record of 58.86 set last year. Mathieu Bois of Canada claimed third in 58.22.

Fran Halsall raced to victory in the women's 50 fly with a time of 25.44 to smash her national record of 26.10 set last year. Canada's Victoria Poon placed second in 25.87, downing her record of 26.21 from March, while Audrey Lacroix took third in 26.24.

Canada's Brent Hayden snagged the men's 100 free title in 46.33, while Craig Gibbons took second in 47.33. Gibbons cleared the British record of 47.71 set by Ben Hockin last December. Ross Davenport completed the top three in 47.50.

Joseph Roebuck touched first in the men's 400 IM with a 4:01.88. That swim crushed the British record of 4:05.20 set by Robin Francis in 2003. Lewis Smith took second in 4:04.89, while Andrew Ford of Canada finished third in 4:13.11.

In the sprint medley, Canada's Julia Wilkinson finished in 59.28 for the win. She became the first Canadian woman to clear 1:00 in the 100-meter distance, breaking the national mark of 1:00.93 set by Marianne Limpert back in 2000. Erica Morningstar (1:00.14) and Jennifer Beckberger (1:00.17) gave Canada a 1-2-3 finish.

Liam Tancock shattered the men's 50 back British record with a 23.10. His swim erased the 23.41 he set last year. Ben Stasiulis placed second in 23.33 with Matthew Clay taking third in 23.69.

In other relay action, Caitlin McClatchey, Joanne Jackson, Halsall and Elizabeth Simmonds clocked a 7:39.20 to win the women's 800 free relay crown, just missing the world record of 7:38.90 held by The Netherlands.