Lessons Learned As Nick Sloman Turns Tables on Kai Edwards To Take 5km Australian Open Water Title

Nick Sloman ahead of the pack
QUICK PACE FOR SLOMAN: Noosa's Nick Sloman set the pace in today's 5km race and it paid dividends. Photo Courtesy Delly Carr (Swimming Australia).

Lessons Learned As Nick Sloman Turns Tables on Kai Edwards To Take 5km Australian Open Water Title

Nick Sloman, his 2021 Olympic hopes alive and kicking, has delivered on lessons learned to turn the tables on Kai Edwards in today’s Men’s 5km Australian Open Water Championship on Queensland’s Sunshine Coast.

Twenty-four hours after Edwards (TSS Aquatic) out-touched Sloman (Noosa) in a dramatic Olympic 10km qualifier and National title, the Fukuoka-bound Tokyo hopefuls were back in the water at Coolum’s the Oz Ski Resort.

And Sloman was determined to deliver on his lessons learnt from Saturday’s race – and knowing what Edwards has in his armoury- to take an all-the way victory –back himself, hit the lead early and it paid off.

Sloman touched first in 56 minutes 01.72 seconds, just over 11 seconds faster than Edwards in 56:12.76 with Kawana Waters’ Bailey Armstrong winning bronze in 56:41.30.

Speaking after the race, Sloman said he put into practise the lessons he learnt from the 20k outing 24 hours earlier against Edwards.

“It’s always a risk pushing that early but obviously knowing what Kai is capable of after yesterday I had to change the strategy up, so I went early and it paid off,” Sloman said.

“It is very hard to back up after doing the 10km yesterday, but you’ve just got to make sure that you recover, save the legs and keep hydrated.”

Sloman and Edwards will line up in Fukuoka on May 29,30 to determine who will represent Australia in the 10km Open Water Marathon in Tokyo.

Moesha Johnson

CATCH ME IF YOU CAN: That was the message from Moesha Johnson and no one did as she led from the first turn to win the women’s 5km National title. Photo Courtesy: Delly Carr (Swimming Australia).

In the women’s race it was Edwards’ TSS Aquatic team mate Moesha Johnson who like the men’s podium also backed up from yesterday’s 10k to steal the 5km and ignite an open water career for the 1500m pool specialist.

With 10k victor and Tokyo-bound Kareena Lee watching on, after earning a rest after yesterday’s impressive win. Johnson unleashed on her opponents early to claim a lead which she never looked like losing.

She led all the way to win in 59 minutes and 07.44 seconds to beat out teammate and yesterday’s 10km silver medallist Bianca Crisp in 1:01:15.96 and exciting junior Jessica Mouatt from Nudgee College who clocked 1:01:16.41 for third.

“At the first turn I was out the front and thought I’d see how the next straight went and if I could break away from the girls. If not, I’d just practice my pack swimming and by the second buoy I had a bit of a lead, so I just started building the race from there,” Johnson said post- race.

“It was way easier than yesterday, I did the 10km and that was a lot more of a grind, but today I kind of just cruised through the first two laps and then built from there.”

Johnson will now put her efforts back into the 800m and 1500m freestyle for June’s Olympic Trials but admitted that come the next World Championships, she could well be “in.”

“I’m exploring (my options) at the moment…..my main event is the 1500m but if I get the opportunity to make it to Worlds and swim against the world’s best then I’ll take it,” said Johnson.

Meanwhile Belgravia teammates and Paralympic pool gold medallists, , Brenden Hall and Lakeisha Patterson won their respective Australian Men’s and Women’s 5km Open Multi-Class titles.

Hall posted a time of 1:00:29.36 to beat out Tuggeranong Vikings Swim Club’s Joshua Alford (1:04:57.87) and Melbourne Vicentre’s Ben Morrison (1:09:16.81).

A frantic finish to the Girls 14-year 5km race –Warringah Aquatics NSW’s Zara Kasprowicz (1:06:34.41 )out-touch Revesby Workers NSW’s Rafaela Kopellou (1:06:34.55.) by just 0.14secs in the closest finish of the weekend with Goodlife’s Daisy Quinn (1:06:55.75) third.

Samuel Thorpe (St Peters Western, QLD) and Samuel Higgs (Warringah Aquatic, NSW) went head-to-head as they battled it out for gold and silver in the Boys 15-year 5km race.

Thorpe managed to get the upper hand at the finish line to edge out Higgs for the Australian title – 1:02:08.80 to 1:02:10.98. Higgs’ Warringah Aquatic teammate Alexander Smith rounded out the podium, scoring bronze in 1:03:16.13.

Thomas Raymond (Nudgee College, QLD) backed up his performance after competing in the 7.5km event on Saturday to prevail in the Boys 18-year 5km event. Recording a time of 56:44:00, Raymond held off Ruben Rees (Miami, QLD) 57:23.73 and Noosa QLD’s Kilian Carrel (59:52.41).

While Finella Gibbs-Beal (Noosa, QLD) added to her medal tally on Sunday, taking home the Girls 17-year 5km event in 1:01:19.78. Jacqueline Davison-McGovern (Yeronga Park, QLD) snared the silver in 1:02:54.12 and Bianca Walton (Auburn, NSW) collected the bronze in 1:03:38.11.

AGE Race Results:

Boys 14-year 5km
Gold – Daniel Carter, Castle Hill RSL, NSW (1:05:36.01)
Silver – Jaxson Smith, Revesby Workers, NSW (1:05:38.04)
Bronze – Thomas Dreverman, South Shore, WA (1:08:35.84)

Girls 15-year 5km
– Taryn Roberts, Rockingham, WA (1:05:43.45)
Silver – Hayley Andrejic, Townsville Tourist, QLD (1:06:49.30)
Bronze – Rubie Turner, Peel Aquatic, WA (1:09:21.68)

Boys 16-year 5km
– Charlie Gray, Revesby Workers , NSW (1:00:12.89)
Silver – Kai Robertson, Revesby Workers, NSW (1:00:32.92)
Bronze – Dougal Richmond, Yeronga Park, QLD (1:00:33.03)

Girls 16-year 5km
– Abbey Connor, Revesby Workers , NSW (1:01:29.34)
Silver – Charlotte Brown, Windsor, NSW (1:07:13.43)
Bronze – Alexis Barnett, St Peters Western, QLD (1:07:27.77)

Boys 17-year 5km
– Robert Thorpe, St Peters Western, QLD (56:41.33)
Silver – Kaiden Richings, Bunbury, WA (57:29.64)
Bronze – Euan Liney, Knox Pymble, NSW (59:53.37)

Girls 18-year 5km
– Sara Tazaki, Miami, QLD (1:02:49.06)
Silver – Piper Sanderson, Belgravia, QLD (1:04:15.21)
Bronze – Cassandra Fayers, Hunter, NSW (1:04:50.97)

Boys 19-year 5km
– Kyle Lee, North Coast, WA (56:38.23)
2nd Place – William Thorley, Hong Kong (57:11.39)
Silver (Second Australian) – Nicholas Middleton, Revesby Workers, NSW (57:42.57)
Bronze – Logan Kaye, Manly, NSW (1:00:34.92)

Girls 19-year 5km
– Ella Wassing, Kawana Waters, QLD (1:03:38.05)
Silver – Brianna Donato, TSS Aquatic, QLD (1:04:33.82)
Bronze – Lexi Harrison, Narrabeen, NSW (1:04:39.22)

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