It's something of a paradox that if one sees 800/1500 free on the event schedule at most swim meets, it's time to look for a good book or go catch a movie or something. Yet on the final night of the 2013 World Championship Trials, the distance swimmers provided what many will consider to be the two most exciting races of the meet. And both races generated "Wow! I've never seen that in person before!" moments.
In the 800 Freestyle Savannah King, UNBD/VNSC prevailed over Alexa Komarnycky IS, by less than a second. Both swimmers were under the World Championship “A” standard so both will compete in that event in Barcelona. Then, literally less than ten minutes later (seriously, there was a 200IM "B" final and a medal presentation in between), Komarnycky was on the blocks for the women's 200IM, and managed to come from behind to take the silver. Her time again, was under the "A" standard, ensuring she can swim that event at World Champs this summer.
I don't know Alexa really well, but I have to think that those two silver medals will get priority treatment on her trophy shelf over gold medals from other events.
The final individual event of the meet was the men’s 1500 Freestyle, and has been the case in recent years, it was the most dramatic race of the meet. Ryan Cochrane, IS, to no one's surprise was the winner, but the battle for second spot was epic between his teammates, Will Brothers and Eric Hedlin.
Hedlin maintained a slight lead over Brothers through most of the race only to have Brothers surge over the final 50m and not be able to respond, finishing just over a second behind Brothers. Both swimmers were under the “A” standard with Brothers being selected to the World Championships team in the event. All three were under 15:04 - well below the FINA "A" standard.
Hedlin will look to qualify for the Worlds team in open water later this spring.
Other notable results from BC swimmers included the following:
Alec Page, IS, was the bronze medalist in the men’s 200 IM.
Tera Van Beilen of VNSC was the winner of the women’s 200 Breaststroke with Martha McCabe, UBCD claiming second place. Both will represent Canada in Barcelona.
In the men’s 50 Freestyle Luke Peddie UBCD/VNSC finished second by one one- hundredth of a second. Kelly Aspinall, UBCD was third.
The 400 Medley relays ended the meet. UBCD men won the gold medal, represented by Kelly Aspinall, Sergey Holson, Coleman Allen and Tommy Gossland. The UBCD foursome of Lauren Lavigna, Laura Thompson, Noemie Thomas and Brittney Harley were the silver medalists in the women’s relay.