Jazz Carlin and Chris Walker-Hebborn were the British standouts from a weekend of racing in the South of France as teams from Bath, Leicester and Wales competed at the French Golden Tour meeting in Marseille.
Carlin was her usual consistent self as she took gold tine h 400 free in 4:05.55 and 800m freestyle in 8:25.13 pushing her up to 3rd on the world rankings for the shorter distance and fourth in the longer event. She was also under the 2 minute mark over 200 freestyle, posting 1:59.75 for third, behind team-mate Siobhan-Marie O’Connor whose 1:58.37 has only been bettered by her amongst British swimmers this year. O’Connor was also the winner of the 200IM, posting 2:11.22 for the top spot on the podium, and a time that would be good enough for third on the world rankings, if she’d not swum faster in Flanders.
Elsewhere, Walker-Hebborn clocked 53.84 to take second in the 100m backstroke, just 0.1 behind Frenchman Camille Lacourt. That time represents his best ever in season swim and jumped him to 6th in the world on this year’s rankings. He also added 4th in the 50m backstroke in 25.51.
— Chris Walker-Hebborn (@WalkerHebborn) March 8, 2015
Backstroke also saw Lizzie Simmonds on the podium twice, in the 200m and 100m events. The longer race was her turn for gold after a swim of 2:09.28, while she took third in the 100m in a time of 1:00.37.
The breaststroke events saw Michael Jamieson and Andrew Willis taking 2nd and 3rd respectively int eh 200m behind European Champion Marco Koch; Jamieson edging it 2:12.88 to 2:13.22 for Willis. In the 100m, Jamieson was third and Willis 6th. Both will be looking for quicker times in the forthcoming trials. In the corresponding events on the ladies side, Wales’s Chloe Tutton, from City of Cardiff, took third in the 200m in 2:29.11 and dipped under 1:10 for 5th in the 100m event.
Other Bath finalists included Jemma Lowe who was fourth and seventh in the 200m and 100m butterfly respectively, while Lewis Coleman, competing for the first time for Bath since his switch from Sheffield, took 4th in the 200IM. His 2:02.62 put him a fingernail ahead of Cardiff’s Ieuan Lloyd who was 5th. Fellow Welshman Calum Jarvis, in Bath colours here, was 5th in the 200 free, having posted his fourth fastest time ever in the heats of the 100 free, with a 49.98. The highlights for Leicester came from Candice Hall who made the A finals of both the 200 backstroke and 400IM.
Meanwhile over in Bangor, Northern Ireland, the Dave Mcullagh Memorial meet was taking place with a field including Commonwealth 200m breaststroke champions Ross Murdoch. Like his Bath counterparts, he’ll be looking to swim quicker later in the year, but took breaststroke wins in the 100m and 200m in 1:01.40 and 2:14.46. Murdoch was denied the clean sweep, however, by Alex Murphy who took the 50m.