18 May 2022

Australian swimming championships - May 2022

Speedo's Tokyo Golden Girls Change It Up For This Year’s Australian Championships In Adelaide

Austrlian Swimming Championships

Speedo's dual Olympic champions Ariarne Titmus and Kaylee McKeown will revisit new horizons at this week’s Australian Swimming Championships at the SA Aquatic And Leisure Centre in Adelaide

The two stars of Tokyo will be joined by fellow Olympic gold medallists Mack Horton and Zac Stubblety-Cook among 21 Speedo Ambassadors on show over the five-day meet starting in Adelaide today, Wednesday and culminating in the Australian Team announcements on Sunday night.

Swimming Australia will announce its team for the up-coming FINA World Championships in Budapest (June 18-July 3) before Commonwealth Games Australia names its swimming team for the XXIIth Commonwealth Games in Birmingham (July 28-August 8).

Titmus (St Peters Western, QLD) has decided to drop the 800 metres from her program, adding the 100m freestyle to her Tokyo gold medal events, the 200 and 400m freestyle.

And she knows she won’t get things all her own way with St Peters team mate and dual Olympic relay golden girl Mollie O’Callaghan looking to keep her momentum going from the Queensland Championships.

While McKeown, who has now settled in to Michael Bohl’s premier High Performance Squad at the Gold Coast Aquatic Centre, will add both the 200 and 400IMs to her 100 and 200m backstroke events, her Olympic gold medal races from Tokyo, where she will again come up against Minna Atherton (Bond, QLD).

With Titmus by-passing the 800 it means that former triple Junior World champion Lani Pallister will look to the podium against the likes of Tokyo duo Maddy Gough (Chandler, QLD) and Kiah Melverton (St Peters Western, QLD) – as well as in the 400 and 1500m.

Horton is also amongst several members of the Australian team who have found new beginnings since Tokyo, moving from Melbourne to join Bohl’s star-studded group as he looks to re-ignite himself for both the World’s and Commonwealth Games campaigns.

And all eyes will be on Olympic champion Zac Stubblety-Cook (Chandler, QLD) and his fellow Speedo Ambassador Matthew Wilson (SOPAC, NSW) in the breaststroke events – especially in the 200m where Stubblety-Cook comes in as the man to beat, with Wilson looking to re-capture the form that saw him equal the world record in 2019.

And while these stars of Tokyo will be front and centre for a Championship meet to be televised live on Amazon Prime TV, the four-time Olympic gold medallist from Tokyo, Emma McKeon will also be glued to the TV.

McKeon has decided against swimming in Budapest and will be taking advantage of Swimming Australia’s offer of a wild card through to the Birmingham Games for any Olympic medallist.

Three butterfly girls will be seeking to take advantage of McKeon’s absence with WA’s dual Olympian Brianna Throssell – now with USC Spartans on the QLD Sunshine Coast; Elizabeth Dekkers (Newmarket Racers, QLD) and Laura Taylor (Bond, QLD) priming themselves for the 100 and 200m butterfly.

Others to watch will be Tokyo team mates Elijah Winnington (St Peters Western, QLD) and Thomas Neill (Rackley Swim Team, QLD) who will be joined by Sam Short (Rackley Swim Team, QLD) in the middle and distance freestyle events.

Olympians Chelsea Hodges (Southport, QLD) and Jake Packard (USC Spartans, QLD) will be fired up in the 100m breaststroke, while Clyde Lewis (Griffith University, QLD) will make his sole appearance in the 100m freestyle.

And Thomas Hauck (All Saints, QLD) will have the busiest program of any one in Team Speedo when he lines up in the 200 and 400IM and the 200m freestyle – also facing Ty Hartwell (Chandler, QLD) in the 100 and 200m backstrokes.

Ian Hanson OAM

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