Wednesday, April 27, 2016

James beats brother Stephen in freestyle showdown

"We warmed up together, and while there is rivalry during the race there’s also a lot of support and respect for one another." James Clegg

The British Para Swimming International Meet 2016 came to a conclusion tonight with final opportunities for a place on ParalympicsGB in Rio up for grabs.

While there were no additional automatic qualifiers amongst the Scots there was a fantastic race between brothers James and Stephen Clegg in the MC 50m freestyle.

James, who won bronze at the London Paralympic Games in 2012, had retired from competitive swimming almost a year ago to the day, but has since started training with University of Edinburgh. Younger brother Stephen has been in excellent form this week, breaking older brother’s British Records while racing.

The race itself could not have been any tighter but older brother James (S12) came home first in 25.21 (758 points) to have the bragging rights in the Clegg household. Stephen finished just behind in 25.24 (756 points) and both were happy, James said,

“That was a great race. Stephen’s been fast all week and I have to say I was feeling pretty nervous. We warmed up together, and while here is rivalry during the race there’s also a lot of support and respect for one another.

Brother Stephen added,

“James is the British Record holder and I was keen to take it off him, but he gets to hold onto it for a big longer. It’s great to race alongside him as we push each other along.”

With Andrew Mullen, Scott Quin and Abby Kane having posted consideration times for Rio, Scottish Swimming’s Disability Performance Development Manager, Paul Wilson said,

“It’s been an excellent week for the Scottish athletes and I’m delighted that Andy, Scott and Abby have secured nomination times for the Paralympic Games in Rio. That is great testament to the hard work that they and their coaches have put in.

“I’ve also been encouraged by our younger swimmers, with many improving their PBs and progressing to the finals in each of their events. I hope they’ve taken a great deal of confidence and learning from this meet and use this experience to take their swimming to the next level.”

Nominations for ParalympicsGB will now be submitted and the team announced by the British Paralympic Association on or around 16th May.

Other Scottish swimmers competing tonight were:

Hope Gordon, S9 (Stirling Swimming) – MC 50m freestyle 33.85 (631 points)

Toni Shaw, S10 (COAST) – MC 50m freestyle 31.89 (661 points)

Beth Johnston, S10 (BEST) – MC 50m freestyle 33.44 (573 points)

Andrew Mullen, S5 (Ren96) – MC 50m freestyle 35.37 (736pts)

Kyle Hughes, S9 (Motherwell & Wishaw) – MC 50m freestyle 31.09 (528 points)

Jon Law, S13 (Helensburgh) – MC 50m freestyle27.60 (594 points)

Oliver Carter, S10 (Carnegie) – MC 50m freestyle 28.75 (523 points)

Toni Shaw, SM10 (COAST) – MC 200m IM 2:51.90 (608 points)

Cara Smyth, SM10 (Incas) – MC 200m IM 3:03.28 (502 points)

Abby Kane, SM13 (Ren96) – MC 200m IM 2:45.51 (667 points)

Reagan Doig, SM14 (Perth City) – MC 200m IM 2:36.19 (741 points)

Scott Quin, SM14 (Warrender) – MC 200m IM 2:20.35 (776 points)


Full results from the meet can be found here:

The event schedule can be found here:

Both heats and finals are being live streamed. Follow all the action here:

The British Para-Swimming International Meet is taking place at Tollcross International Swimming Centre from 23rd to 27th April.