Lani Pallister Follows Mum Into The Record Books; Kaylee McKeown Chases Slice of Swimming History and William Yang Makes A Splash

Lani smile
FAMILY DOUBLE: Lani Pallister has added to the family swimming records adding the 1500 to her 800m win - joining her mother, 1988 Olympian Janelle Elford who dominated the distances through 1987 and 1988. Photo Courtesy Delly Carr (Swimming Australia).

Lani Pallister Follows Mum Into The Record Books; Kaylee McKeown Chases A Slice of Swimming History and William Yang Makes A Splash

Anything mum can do then Lani Pallister can do too with the three-time World Junior champion following in her mum’s footsteps for the second time at this week’s Australian Swimming Championships in Adelaide in what was a huge night for the Griffith University Club.

Lani action

GOING THE DISTANCE: Lani Pallister on her way to a personal best time of 15:55.40 in the 1500m freestyle. Photo Courtesy: Delly Carr (Swimming Australia).

The 19-year-old Pallister (Griffith (University) produced one of the swims of her career – clocking a personal best time of 15 minutes 55.40 – the third fastest time by an Australian to add the 1500m freestyle to her earlier win in the 800m freestyle in 8:17.77.

Mother, Janelle Elford (assistant to head coach Michael Bohl in the Griffith program at the Swimming Australia Hub at the Gold Coast Aquatic Centre) won the 1500m in 1987, ‘88 and ‘91 and the 800m in ’87 and ’88 – and now daughter Lani has followed mum into the annals with her own 800-1500m double in 2022.

Live Results

And it was a 1-2 finish for the Griffith team with already qualified 5 and 10km open water representative Moesha Johnson adding the 1500m freestyle to her World Championship program for Budapest next month – clocking 16:00.74 in seconds place ahead of Madeleine Gough (Chandler) 1608.31.

“Mum was an incredible athlete in her own respect so to be kind of following in her footsteps and to keep doing distance freestyle for our family is special enough as it is and I’m excited to keep moving forward,” said Pallister.

Pallister and Johnson’s Griffith University team mate,  Kaylee McKeown chimed in too and the triple Olympic gold medallist has set herself up for a slice of swimming history after winning her third National title.

McKeown powered home to win the 200m backstroke in 2:05.31 after a busy four days with outstanding wins in the 100m backstroke and the gruelling 400IM. McKeown saying: “Hopefully in a few weeks with a bit more rest I’ll be able to produce a faster time.”

Kaylee start

GOLDEN ARCHES: Tokyo golden girl Kaylee McKeown off to a flying start. Photo Courtesy: Delly Carr (Swimming Australia).

The 21-year-old will return to the pool for the final night tonight chasing her fourth title of this meet in the 200m individual medley, attempting to become the first swimmer in history to win the 100 and 200m backstroke and the 200m and 400IM doubles in the same year.

And it was the ever present teen-machine Mollie O’Callaghan (St Peters Western, QLD) who swam her way into the Australian All-Time Top Ten in the 200m backstroke, finishing second with her pb of 2:08.48, the two-time Tokyo Relay alternate gold medallist qualifying for her fourth individual event (50, 100, 200m backstroke and the 100m freestyle).

And Mollie O still has the 50m freestyle to swim on the final day so that number is likely to reach five plus relays.

And while Pallister and McKeown continued on their winning ways, the Griffith University boys were also holding up their end of the bargain with former Nunawading team mates Bowen Gough and Brendon Smith both adding victories for Griffith, in the 200m butterfly and 400m IM respectively – and both in qualifying times for the World Championships and Commonwealth Games.

Smith adding the 400IM to his victory in the 200IM, in a time of 4:11.88 ahead of fellow Olympian and Budapest and Birmingham qualifier Se-Bom Lee (Carlile, NSW) 4:14.77 and an elated Kieren Pollard (North Coast, WA) 4:14.78 – qualifying for the Commonwealth Games Team.

Gough (Griffith University, QLD) 1:56.49 who was a close up third in last year’s Olympic Trials after swimming the qualifying time but missing the top two by less than half-a-second has certainly made it this time.

The 24-year-old Gough, the form 200m butterflyer has returned to Adelaide this year determined to turn the tables and he delivered in 1:56.49 ahead of Charlie Hawke (Hunter, NSW) 1:58.00 David Morgan (Miami, QLD) 1:58.39 – both outside the qualifying time.

William Yang reaction

ELATION: Sydney’s William Yang’s dream comes true as he storms to victory and his first Australian team after winning the blue ribband 100m freestyle. Photo Courtesy: Delly Carr (Swimming Australia).

While in the men’s 100m freestyle it was 23-year-old William Yang (Loreto Normanhurst, NSW) in a pb time of 48.55, who stood up to take the vacant crown left by Kyle Chalmers in one of the real battle-royals of the night – with less than half-a-second between the top four.

And qualify for his first open national Dolphins team in a changing of the sprint freestyle guard.

An elated Yang, back in the fast lane three years after he burst onto the scene in 2019, out-touched Chalmers’ Marion, SA team mate and 25-year-old 200m winner Zac Incerti 48.65.

Yang, now training under Adam Kable at the SOPAC program, had won the 50m backstroke and butterfly crowns in 2019.

Sixteen-year-old Gold Coast rising star Flynn Southam (Bond, QLD) 48.76 was another fingernail away in third to again cement himself on his first Australian team – with exciting times ahead.

Southam will be joined by returning 23-year-old 2017 World’s team member Jack Cartwright (St Peters Western, QLD) 49.04 – finishing fourth- both boys booking their places on the Budapest and Birmingham 4x100m freestyle relay teams.


2022 Australian Swimming Championships

Results Day 4

Women’s 200m backstroke

Kaylee McKeown (Griffith University, QLD) 2:05.31

Mollie O’Callaghan (St Peters Western, QLD) 2:08.48

Minna Atherton (Bond, QLD) 2:10.20


Women’s 1500m freestyle

Lani Pallister (Griffith University, QLD) 15:55.40

Moesha Johnson (Griffith University, QLD) 16:00.74

Maddie Gough (Chandler, QLD) 16:08.31


Men’s 100m freestyle

William Yang (Loreto Normanhurst) 48.55

Zac Incerti (Marion, SA) 48.65

Flynn Southam (Bond, QLD)48.76)

Jack Cartwright (St Peters Western, QLD) 49.04

Matt Temple (Marion, SA) 49.11

Dylan Andrea (Nudgee, QLD) 49.12


Men’s 400m IM

Brendon Smith (Griffith University, QLD) 4:11.88

Se-Bom Lee (Carlile, NSW) 4:14.77

Kieren Pollard (North Coast, WA) 4:14.78


Women’s 50m butterfly

Holly Barratt (Rockingham, WA) 26.02

Alexandria Perkins (USC Spartans, QLD) 26.18

Abigail Schoorl (Miami) 26.45


Men’s 200m butterfly

Bowen Gough (Griffith University, QLD) 1:56.49

Charlie Hawke (Hunter, NSW) 1:58.00

David Morgan (Miami, QLD) 1:58.39

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Brisbane Swim Fan
4 months ago

Lani Pallister coming back/recovering from heart surgery and an eating disorder according to Sydney Morning Herald. It’s time for Swim AUS to step up and do something on epidemic of eating disorders among swimmers, gives credence to allegations of weight-shaming etc that have been made against certain coaches and programs in the recent past.