O’Connor sets new English record

13th April 2014

Siobhan Marie-O’Connor set an English 200m Individual Medley record to win her second gold of the 2014 British Gas Swimming Championships in Glasgow.

The British Gas National Centre Bath swimmer, who won the 200m Freestyle title on the opening night in Scotland, led from the start to set the new record of 2:09.71 and sail under the England consideration time.

A delighted O’Connor said: “I’m very happy with my win. The 200 medley is my favourite event and I’m thrilled to have set a new English record and got under the consideration time.

“I felt good during the first 100m but it’s such a strong field that I knew they would come back if I didn’t push myself. I didn’t have a lot left in the last 25m but I dug really deep and am really happy with the time.”

Middlesbrough’s Aimee Willmott took silver in a personal best 2:10.60 with O’Connor’s Bath team mate Sophie Allen taking bronze in 2:11.54.

In the 200m Backstroke, Stockport Metro’s Lauren Quigley overtook defending champion Lizzie Simmonds (British Gas National Centre Bath) in the final 10m to take the title in 2:09.79.

Quigley said: “It was a good race. I came in feeling confident but I knew it was a really tough field so I just wanted to focus on my own race in my own lane and hopefully swim a good time. The consideration times have all been really tough, but I’m pleased to have got a PB and will continue to push myself.”

Simmonds ultimately claimed silver in 2:10.72 while City of Manchester’s Jessica Fullalove clocked 2:12.66 for bronze.

Hatfield’s Adam Brown swam a season’s best 49.35 to retain the British 100m Freestyle title.

Brown said: “I came here to get the win and that’s what counts right now. I would have liked to have gone faster and looking towards Rio the aim is to get under 48 seconds.”

Plymouth Leander’s Ben Proud took silver with 49.54 and Millfield’s James Disney-May, who led the field at 50m, took bronze with 49.71.

In the SB9 100m Breaststroke, British Para-Swimming National Performance Centre swimmer Claire Cashmore won gold with 1:22.41.

The Paralympic silver medallist said: “I’m really happy to have won the race. Harriet [Lee] was quicker than me in the qualifiers so when I passed her on the way back I knew I had it in the bag.

“It’s always great to swim head to head and Harriet pushed me all the way. But I’m disappointed to have missed the qualification time.”

British record holder Harriet Lee (City of Peterborough) finished second in 1:22.71 and Chloe Buck (Harrogate District) swam a personal best 1:24.52 to take the bronze.

Ellesmere College’s Chris Walker-Hebborn took 50m Backstroke gold in a personal best 25.09. He said: “Going under 25 seconds would have been great but I’m still really pleased to have got a PB.”

British Gas National Centre Loughborough’s Liam Tancock finished second in a season’s best 25.48 and Joseph Patching (Plymouth Leander) lowered his personal best for bronze in 25.77.

In the 50m Butterfly Fran Halsall saw off British Gas National Centre Loughborough team mates Amy Smith and Rachael Kelly to retain her British title.

Leading from the start, Halsall finished in a season’s best 25.83 to take her second gold of the Championships, having won the 50m Freestyle on day three in Glasgow. She said: “I haven’t been swimming that fast this week and didn’t have a great end to the race so I’m really pleased to have kept my title.”

Smith equalled her personal best to take silver in 26.41 while Kelly, who took gold in the 100m Butterfly earlier in the competition, swam a 26.57 PB to win bronze.