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burnett lowers record again

Simon Burnett smashed through his day old British record in the 200m freestyle to become the first swimmer confirmed for the Melbourne Commonwealth Games. He was joined on the plane to Melbourne by World Bronze medallist Liam Tancock who took the 50m backstroke title, but Kate Haywood, Mark Foster and Katy Sexton just missed out on automatic selection in the 100m breaststroke.
Having missed the World championships through illness, this was Burnett’s first rested swim of the summer and he swept through the 1:47 barrier for the first time in tonight’s final, posting 1:46.59. IN another reminder of what night have been, that time would have been good enough for Bronze in Montreal has the Arizona based swimmer been able to make it. Understandably Burnett was delighted with his swim “I’m so pleased,” he said afterwards “I came here not knowing what to expect – I haven’t swum long course properly since Athens. I felt I had nothing to lose, so I might as well go for it.”
The runners up spot went to David Carry who set another personal best and Scottish Record of 1:48.32 – faster than he managed in the world championships, while Ross Davenport was another to set a lifetime best in third with 1:48.84, inside the B selection time.
Meanwhile Liam Tancock is still on a high following his performance in Montreal. His wining time of 25.17 was half a second inside the A selection time and 0.64 ahead of runner up Matt Clay, who posted a B selection time of 25.81. Tancock will now set his sights on a sub 55 second swim for the 100m event to confirm his selection for that discipline.
Kate Haywood, though, couldn’t quite recapture her form from the world championships but still produced a solid swim of 1:08.91 to take the title, almost a second ahead of Kerry Buchan who burst through the 1:10 barrier for the first time in 1:09.77 to post a Scottish consideration time. Haywood’s winning mark was a B qualification time, but was just 0.23 seconds away from automatic qualification.
Elsewhere, Mark Foster and Katy sexton were outside qualification in the 50m butterfly and 100m backstroke respectively, but both took the gold medals. Sextons 1:01.46 was a welcome return to something approximating her best form and was only 0.28s outside the automatic selection standard. She was pushed hard by Melanie Marshall who posted 1:01.78 in second place.
In other finals action, Lisa Chapman pipped 15-year old Fran Halsall in the 50m freestyle swimming a lifetime best of 25.75 to Halsalls 25.90, inside the C qualifying standard, but she will need to improve further to guarantee her selection. The event also marked the end of Karen Pickering’s swimming career at a national level as she came home 4th in 26.44. The Ipswich swimmer will continue to represent her club.
Youth was the order of the day in the women’s 200m butterfly with al three podium places going to junior swimmers. Jessica Dickons (15) took the win in 2:12.67, while Stephanie Johnson (16) took silver ahead of Ellen Gandy (13). There was then a Scottish double as David Carry set his second Scottish record of the night to take the 400IM in 4:19.15, while Kris Gilchrist took the 200m breaststroke in 2:14.51