December 09, 2018

Swim Ireland’s Irish Short Course National Championships concluded in Lisburn, Co. Antrim today with a further 4 records wiped from the books bringing the total to 18 over the past four days.

Eoin Corby of National Centre Limerick set the first record of the evening in the Men’s 200m Breaststroke. The 16-year-old smashed Andrew Bree’s 1998 Irish Junior Record of 2:14.26 to claim gold in 2:11.96. Yesterday, Corby’s older brother Alan, set a new senior standard in the 100m Individual Medley.

Jack McMillan won his third title of the week and broke his third Irish Junior Record in the Men’s 200m Freestyle Final. The Bangor swimmer took almost 2 seconds off his own 2017 record of 1:46.32 touching in 1:44.49 ahead of National Centre Dublin team mates Jordan Sloan (1:45.19) and Robbie Powell (1:48.06).

The last race of the night provided two final records as the men from Bangor and Limerick set new Senior and Junior standards in the 200m Medley Relay. The Bangor team of McMillan, Sloan, David Thompson and Curtis Coulter broke Ards’ 2017 record in 1:40.28 while Limerick’s Aaron Carroll, Uiseann Cooke, Jeremy O’Connor and Finn McGeever clocked 1:45.11 for a new junior time. That Limerick team, along with Lisburn, Aer Lingus and Ards teams had all been under the previous record of 1:47.13 in the morning heats.

Mona McSharry was the only swimmer to break the 2-minute mark as she collected her sixth title of the week in the 200m Freestyle Final. McSharry, who has broken six national records in the past four days, touched in 1:59.40. Kilkenny’s Naomi Trait and Bangor’s Rachel Bethel (2:01.87) battled for silver with Trait prevailing by just .25 in 2:01.62.

Aer Lingus’ Aisling Haughey added to last night’s 50m Breaststroke title with a win in the 200m event tonight. The 23-year-old dominated from start to finish posting a time of 2:24.93 for gold ahead of a much tighter battle for silver and bronze from her team mate Lisa Cooke (2:34.09) and Enniskillen Lakelanders’ Ellie McCartney (2:34.52).

The men’s 800m Freestyle Final had gotten the final night of action underway, Lisburn’s Daniel Wiffen and Dolphin’s Alfie Kelly had the Lisburn crowd on their feet as they went head to head for the full 800 meters. A sprint to the finish from Wiffen secured him the gold medal in 8:10.58 ahead of Kelly who touched in 8:11.52.

Kate Kavanagh and Paddy Johnston both picked up their fist individual titles of the week in the 50m Backstroke. Kavanagh of UCD won the women’s final in 28.87 with Johnston collecting gold in the men’s event in 25.41.

Following the close of the 2018 Championships, National Performance Director Jon Rudd said "It's very encouraging to see how far we have come since this event last year. Although five of our premier athletes are away preparing for the World SC Championships in China, we have seen a number of junior and senior records broken at this meet. However, the primary indicator of progress for the nation as a whole is that of the number of athletes at this competition compared to last year, with the qualifying standards remaining roughly the same at 2017. The depth to the heats and the higher requirement to perform to make an 'A' Final is something quite new and it's a critical mass such as this that will see us progress as a nation over the years to come. Culturally things have shifted. The club with only one or two qualifiers are now here. Athletes with only one qualifying time are now here. Our athletes based outside of Ireland are now here. All of this is most encouraging and gives us a great platform for the long course season ahead of us in 2019"

Next up for Irish swimmers will see a team of 5 compete at the World Short Course Swimming Championships in Hangzhou, China. Niamh Coyne, Brendan Hyland, Conor Ferguson, Darragh Greene and Shane Ryan will be in action from Tuesday.

December 09, 2018

Day 4 Results:

Men 800m Freestyle: 1st Daniel Wiffen Lisburn 8:10.58 2nd Alfie Kelly Dolphin 8:11.52 3rd Jack Fleming Lisburn 8:23.37

Women 200m Breaststroke: 1st Aisling Haughey Aer Lingus 2:24.93 2nd Lisa Cooke Aer Lingus 2:34.09 3rd Ellie McCartney Enniskillen Lakelanders 2:34.52

Men 200m Breaststroke: 1st Eoin Corby National Centre Limerick 2:11.96 IJR 2nd Liam Doyle National Centre Limerick 2:12.92 3rd Uisean Cooke National Centre Limerick 2:15.34

Women 50m Backstroke: 1st Kate Kavanagh UCD 28.87 2nd Rebecca Reid Ards 28.89 3rd Maria Godden Kilkenny 29.39

Men 50m Backstroke: 1st Paddy Johnston Ards 25.41 2nd Matthew Gardiner NAC 26.93 3rd Callum Ashton Shark 27.07

Women 200m Freestyle: 1st Mona McSharry Marlins 1:59.40 2nd Naomi Trait Kilkenny 2:01.62 3rd Rachel Bethel Bangor 2:01.87

Men 200m Freestyle: 1st Jack McMillan Bangor 1:44.49 IJR 2nd Jordan Sloan National Centre Dublin 1:45.19 3rd Robbie Powell National Centre Dublin 1:48.06

Women 200m Medley Relay: 1st Aer Lingus 1:55.79 2nd Ards 1:57.82 3rd Kilkenny 1:59.55

Men 200m Medley Relay: 1st Bangor 1:40.28 ISR 2nd Limerick 1:43.32 3rd Limerick 1:43.40