Hughes Narrowly Misses Out on the Penaltimate Day in Poznan

13th July 2013

In an evening dominated my semi-final action, Caleb Hughes narrowly missed out on a 800m Freestyle medal in one of the few finals of the penultimate night at the 2013 European Junior Swimming Championships in Poland.

Hughes, who has set personal bests across a spectrum of Freestyle events so far this week, added another best time to his tally, clocking 8:03.26 for fourth place.

“Overall I’m really happy with my performances this week,” said the Hatfield swimmer.

“Obviously I’m disappointed to miss out on a medal there as I was going out for a gold, but I’ve come away with PBs in every event I’ve swum here so I know I’m in good shape.

“I was where I needed to be at the 400m mark and I pushed it on in the second half to try and even split the race, but I just didn’t have the same speed as the other three down the final length.

“I’ve got the European Junior Open Water Championships coming up next week so I’ll take a lot of confidence from the way I’ve swum here and hopefully medal out there in Turkey.”

Millfield’s Joel Knight also went in the same race, touching eighth in a two and a half second best time of 8:08.16.

Britain also just missed out podium in the Mixed 4x100m Medley Relay, fighting hard down the final leg but eventually being touched out into fifth position.

Kathleen Dawson (1:02.50), Harry Ackland (1:04.29), Mark Szaranek (53.97) and Harriet Cooper (55.66) produced solid split times, despite all having raced in this evening’s session, in this exciting new addition to the events programme.

In the 200m Backstroke final, Nathan Theodoris (2:02.85) swam just outside his semi-final qualification time in his seventh race of the meet to touch in eighth position.

Ellena Jones battled hard in the final of the Girls’ 200m Freestyle also finishing in eighth place against a very strong field.

Jones, who contemplated calling time on her career last year after suffering a serious leg injury, came home in 2:03.92 to conclude her racing at this year’s competition.

Britain put themselves in prime position for what promises to be an explosive finale to the 2013 European Junior Championships tomorrow, with seven swimmers qualifying through to five finals on the busiest evening of the meet so far for the British Gas GBR Swimming Team.

Freestyle specialist James Guy comfortably qualified through to the final of the Boys’ 200m.

Guy, who swam the fastest split in the Boys’ 4x200m Freestyle relay last night, cruised to the finish in a time of 1:49.84 – booking his place in lane four for the final.

Yesterday’s 200m IM silver medallist Max Litchfield also secured his spot for tomorrow’s showdown, clocking 1:51.45 for ninth.

Butterfly medallist Emma Day switched focus tonight for the semi-final of the 200m Individual Medley, after setting an impressive personal best in the morning heats.

Day fought hard against Hungary’s Dalma Sebestyen, eventually finishing second in 2:17.07 to claim lane five in the final.

Erin Nabney also qualified through, sealing fifth in a new PB time of 2:18.36.

In the semi-final of the Girls’ 100m Backstroke, 50m silver medallist Kathleen Dawson (1:01.97) came back hard down the final 50m, powering home to take the win and qualify through in second place.

City of Leicester swimmer Harriet Cooper touched in 1:03.07 placing her fifth into tomorrow’s final.

Carnegie’s Mark Szaranek (54.63) put himself in with a chance to add to his bronze medal in the 200m IM, qualifying through ninth in the Boys’ 100m Butterfly.

Katie Latham swam a personal best in the semi-final of the Girls’ 50m Freestyle, touching in 26.29 for 11th place.

Plymouth Leander swimmer Harry Ackland (1:04.15) dipped under his time from the heats in the semi-final of the Boys’ 100m Breaststroke, narrowly missing out of qualification in 15th place.

Mark Perry, 2013 European Junior Team leader said: “The team have performed exceptionally well this evening, we’ve had to race tough with the majority of the action coming from semi-finals. To date, our athletes have won 11 medals, produced 55 personal best times, two Scottish Junior records and one Scottish Senior record.

“The swimmers used yesterday’s success to keep motivated and spur them on through the penultimate day of competition; it’s been a tough night of racing but we’ve managed to maintain third place on the medal table and have put ourselves in an excellent position for the finals tomorrow night.

“We have some great chances of medals in several events tomorrow so we need to keep the same levels of focus and positivity that we have done so far; it’s all to play for.”