Fresh from 13 gold medals on the opening night of competition at the Pan Pacific Para Swimming Championships in Cairns, the Australian Dolphins Swim Team have continued to impress qualifying for a host of finals tonight.
The men’s and women’s 100m freestyle saw Australia’s best back in the water this morning, with S10 swimmer Rowan Crothers setting the fastest time of the heats.
A gold medallist and world record holder in the S9 freestyle at the Glasgow Commonwealth Games in 2014, Crothers was then reclassified and swam as an S10 at the Rio Paralympics finishing fifth in the 100m freestyle.
With a career goal to break the 50-second mark, which could mean a world record, the 20-year-old said he felt good this morning after last night’s gold medal in the 400m freestyle.
“My main goal for my 100m free right now is to get to 49 seconds by Tokyo,” said Crothers.
“It’s a pretty big hurdle. The world record is 50.7 so it’s targeting a good chunk off that but I’m working really hard back home with my coach Robbie Van der Zant.”
“I took it a little easier on that second 50 this morning, just wanting to get lane 4 for the final tonight, and I got that so I’m happy. So tonight time wise, whatever shows up on the board I’ll be happy with, it’s just making sure I do all the right things in the water.”
The women’s S10 100m freestyle final looks set to be a thriller tonight with 400m world record holder from last night Canadian Aurelia Rivard leading the way ahead of Sophie Pascoe from New Zealand and then Australia’s Paige Leonhardt, Monique Murphy and Keira Stephens.
Brenden Hall was the best of the S9 men while West Australian Ben Popham looks likely to medal in the men’s S8 100m freestyle.
Ellie Cole was the quickest of the S9 freestyle women going through in a time of 1.04.67 while S8 swimmer Lakeisha Patterson will also be looking for another gold medal after qualifying quickest for her class in a time of 1.05.91.
In the final event of the morning, Grant ‘Scooter’ Patterson continued his strong start to the meet with a personal best swim in the heats of the men’s SB2 50m freestyle and will line up in tonight’s final alongside fellow Dolphin SB3 swimmer Ahmed Kelly.
Tonight’s finals action will start from 5.00pm at the Tobruk Memorial Pool in Cairns. Follow all the action at https://www.swimming.org.au/LIVE-streaming.aspx