Daniel Wiffen Sets European SC 800 Free Record Of 7:25.96; Stands 2.54secs Off Grant Hackett’s WR

Daniel Wiffen
Daniel Wiffen: Photo Courtesy: Swim Ireland

Daniel Wiffen Sets European SC 800 Free Record Of 7:25.96; Stands 2.54secs Off Grant Hackett’s WR

Daniel Wiffen moved within sight of the 800 free short-course WR when he took almost two seconds off Gregorio Paltrinieri‘s European record in 7:25.96 on Thursday.

With that performance at the Irish National Winter Championships, Wiffen becomes the first Irish swimmer to break a European record.

Paltrinieri set the previous mark of 7:27.94 at the 2021 European Short-Course Championships and although Mykhailo Romanchuk went 7:25.73 at an ISL test event in 2020, that time was not ratified.

It moves the 21-year-old – coached by Andi Manley at Loughborough – to within 2.54secs of Grant Hackett‘s world record of 7:23.42 which has stood since 2008.

Wiffen said through Swim Ireland:

“I’m very happy, it’s obviously a very fast time and number one in the world (this year).

“I knew that I’d be sub 7.30 and I was aiming for a top 10 in the world, I think that puts me fourth, but I said quietly I’d go for a European record to all my friends in Loughborough, I’m really happy.

“The 1500m was my main focus for the meet (last weekend), and I knew that since I was going to the Irish (nationals) I would do the 800m and 400m there because I thought the 800m could be my quickest, my better event and it’s what I qualified in the Olympics for, and it was nice to get a home crowd watching that.”

During the swim, Wiffen also set a new Irish 400 free record, clocking 3:41.63, lowering the previous record of 3:42.42.

In the past two weeks Wiffen has broken the Irish record in the 800m Freestyle three times.

Last weekend, at the Scottish Short Course Championships, he swam a 1500m Irish record of 14:14.45 placing him sixth all-time, and the fastest man in 2022.

That was 2.43secs swifter than the time of 14:16.88 in which Paltrinieri won the world short-course title on Tuesday in Melbourne.


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