Kyle Chalmers Not Short On Opposition As He Lines up In The 800m Freestyle At South Australian State Championships

CG2022 Kyle Chalmers shoosh 2
SURPRISE SURPRISE: Look who's entered over 800m freestyle at the South Australian State Championships. Photo Courtesy: Delly Carr (Swimming Australia)

Kyle Chalmers Not Short On Opposition As He Lines up In The 800m Freestyle At South Australian State Championships

Commonwealth Games 1500m freestyle gold medallist Sam Short will have an unexpected guest in 100m sprint king Kyle Chalmers when the pair line up together in Sunday’s 800m freestyle at the South Australian State Swimming Championships in Adelaide.

Chalmers began 2023 in his home State meet last night winning the 50m freestyle in 22.54 and reeling off a sizzling 22.00 to anchor his Marion team home in the 4x50m freestyle relay, also bringing home Marion in the 4x100m medley relay with a final 100m freestyle split of 48.64.

Sam Short under water stroke Photo Wade Brennan

LONG AND STRONG: Sam Short shows his powerhouse propulsion. Photo Courtesy: Wade Brennan Photography.

Short, who has begun his State Championship program in fine style, winning the 400m freestyle in 3.47.86, sent Chalmers a text when he saw his Australian team mate’s name bob up in a surprise inclusion among the 800m freestyle entries.

“I actually texted him the other night and said ‘I’ll see you in the 800 big boy’…so it will be interesting…..”

Kyle Chalmers coach Peter Bishop confirmed his Olympic champion 100m freestyler, who unleashed all his awesome power at last month’s Fina World Short Championships in Melbourne, would line up over the 16-lap 800m journey “as long as his body holds up.”

The world short course record holder and one of the world’s best freestyle sprinters, Chalmers won the Short Course 100m freestyle and spearheaded the Dolphins to the top of the relay podiums in the 4x50m medley and 4x100m medley where the Aussies dead-heated with the USA in a grandstand finish to the meet.

Chalmers will take on fellow Olympic team mate and Short’s Rackley Swim Team training partner Tommy Neill in the 100m freestyle, as well as the 50 and 100m butterfly while Neill (after his 3:54.51 in the 400m) will now take on Short over 200m and the 200IM.

Among the winners on night one were:

Women’s 50m freestyle – Meg Harris (Marion, SA) 25.20

Men’s 200m butterfly – Matthew Temple (Marion, SA) 2:00.44

Women’s 200m breaststroke – Jenna Strauch (Miami, QLD) 2:25.11

Women’s 50m backstroke – Bronte Job (Rackley Swim Team, QLD) 27.97

Men’s 50m backstroke – Bradley Woodward (Mingara, NSW) 25.70

Men’s 100m breaststroke – James McKechnie (Starplex, SA) 1:03.30

Women’s 200m butterfly – Brittany Castelluzzo (Tea Tree Gully Swim Club) 2:17.06


STAR POWER: Tommy Neill (far left) with Ty Hartwell, Thomas Hauck, Clyde Lewis and Lani Pallister at the Starlight Foundation Super Swim. Photo Courtesy: Speedo Australia.

Short, who emerged in 2022 as a real Olympic contender for the 2024 Paris Olympics, joined Neill and a throng of Australian team members at this week’s Starlight Foundation Super Swim launch on the Gold Coast saying: “Everything is heading towards the 400, 800 and specifically that 1500m freestyle.

“I really want to set my mark there and continue the momentum I built in 2022, a pretty interesting year, learning a lot about resilience, also recovering from melanoma, swimming on my first Australian teams and my first time in Europe.

“Having to believe in yourself and gaining confidence along the way…I am on the three-monthly melanoma check ups, constantly getting biopsies and everything is fine but I have to manage it..

“I’m in the sun all the time so I have to go to that extra level of protection….

“I’m looking forward to a big few years….it is non stop between now and Paris which is why I had a big break after Birmingham, knowing mentally I’m not going to have a break in the next two years….I really have to make the most of it…”

Neill admitted he likes to treat the racing build up to the World Championship Trials as training.

“The best part about swimming is the racing and if you can enjoy the sport through racing and if you can use that as training it’s so beneficial I find.

“This will be my first ever January (racing) hit out .it will be interesting to see where we are after Christmas…it should be exciting and honest racing.

“Middle distance freestyle has always been my favourite and still will be leading into Paris and I think doing IM work particularly an pre-season gets you fit quick.

“Butterfly and breaststroke work is pretty gruelling and whips you into shape pretty quick; I’ll swim two events per day as a training block trying to give it to myself.”

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