Saturday, February 28, 2009

Grimsey and Gorman to Lead Australians in Rome

Winning the tough RCP Tiburon Mile (shown on left), the prestigious Waikiki Roughwater Swim and the competitive Eyeline 1000 Noosa Ocean Swim in convincing fashion is one thing, but Trent Grimsey stepped it up another notch with an impressive victory at the Australian 10K Open Water Swimming Championship in Sydney today.

Trent won by 50 meters in a time of 1:54:46 over young Rhys Mainstone (1:55.09), former 25K world champion Brendan Capell (1:55.13) and David Browne (1:55.13).

Olympic 10K Marathon swimmer Melissa Gorman (2:00.40) also won convincingly over 15-year-old Danielle Defrancesco (2:02.04), New Zealand’s Alannah Jury (2:02.10), Stacey Hansford (2:02.22) and Amy Thompson (2:02.29).

The Australia team in the 10K race at the 2009 World Swimming Championships in Rome will be represented by Trent, Rhys, Melissa and Danielle in Rome this coming July.

According to Ian Hanson, Trent made a strong move at the 7.5K mark and was looked back.

"I watched the Olympics last year and couldn’t wait to start training again to try and make the World Championships – it was so inspirational, particularly after finishing third at the [pool] Olympic Trials in the 1500 meters," said Trent who swam a 15:12. "At the moment, I'm going to keep doing the open water and the 1500 meter in the pool until I have to make choices down the track. I have tapered for the open water and I’m just going to try and hang on to the taper until the pool events in two weeks time."

Like the other cross-over athletes (i.e., pool + open water) on the world's stage, Trent told Ian Hanson that he was inspired by British swimmer David Davies who is not only one of the fastest 1500-meter freestylers in the world, but also won a silver in the Olympic 10K Marathon Swim.

"He has changed distance swimming that’s for sure; what he has done is amazing and I certainly have enormous respect for him," observed Trent.

Like her British cross-over competitors Keri Anne Payne and Cassandra Patten who both swam in the pool and won open water medals at the Beijing Olympics, Melissa will also try to back up her 10K victory with top finishes in the pool 200-, 400-, 800- and 1500-meter events.

And Melissa is, very importantly, learning how to adapt to the dynamics of open water racing. "I had to change tactics after the girls went out pretty quick from the start. It was my plan to try and get away early, but with the pace really on, I decided to sit with the pack and made my move at the 7.5K mark. The more 10K events you swim you learn not to panic when things don’t go according to plan."

With the elite open water swimming world already preparing for the London 2012 Olympic 10K races in central London, the Australians also have a long-term development plan. "It is very encouraging for our junior development that these two youngsters have stepped up so soon – it is a credit to themselves and their coaches Matt McGee (Rhys Mainstone) and Denis Cotterell (Danielle Defrancesco)," said Australian National Open Water head coach Greg Towle (shown on left).

10K Final Results:
1. T Grimsey, Albany Creek, QLD, 1 hour 54 mins. 46 secs
2. R Mainstone, City of Perth, WA, 1:55.09
3. B Capell, St Peters Western, QLD, 1:55.13

17-18 years:
1. J Killey, Hunter, NSW, 1:55:22
2. P Ryan, New Zealand, 1:55:23
3. K Radford, New Zealand, 1:55:45

16 years:
1. M Halson, Surrey Park, VIC, 2:02:46.00
2. K Logan, Southside Aquatics, QLD, 2:04:18
3. J MacFarlan, West Coast, WA, 2:04:22

15 years:
1. J Beard, Bayside, NSW, 1:58:15
2. R Grimsey, Albany Creek, QLD, 2:06:05
3. J Richardson, Albany Creek, QLD, 2:06:06

14 years:
1. N Barrett, Gardens, QLD, 2:06:04
2. C Arthur, Gardens, QLD, 2:06:59
3. P Cobiac, United, NSW, 2:09:47

1. M Gorman, Redcliffe Leagues, QLD, 2:00.40
2. D Defrancesco, Pro-Ma Miami, QLD, 2:02.04
3. A Jury, New Zealand, 2:02.10

17-18 years:
1. A Jury, New Zealand, 2:02:10
2. S Hansford, Bankstown Sports, NSW, 2:02:22
3. J Traficante, Telopea, NSW, 2:04:29

16 years:
1. D Defrancesco, Pro-Ma Miami, QLD, 2:02:04
2. C Zillman, Yeronga Park, QLD, 2:08:35
3. L McNamara, Surrey Park, VIC, 2:09:27

15 years:
1. S Watts, Cherrybrook Carlile, NSW, 2:15:08
2. S Furse, Clovercrest, SA, 2:18:20
3. C Palmer, Picton, NSW, 2:19:38

14 years:
1. B Robertson, Surrey Park, VIC, 2:09:39
2. C Hansford, Bankstown Sports, NSW, 2:13:43
3. E Suters, Campbelltown, NSW, 2:15:47

Photo of Melissa Gorman at the Beijing Olympics 10K swim by the Herald Sun.

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