Saturday, December 9, 2017

Benson Secures Second Breaststroke Title of Short Course Championships

The Scottish National Short Course Championships continued today at the Royal Commonwealth Pool in Edinburgh, where Craig Benson, University of Stirling, secured his second breaststroke title, winning gold in the 100m final.

Benson led from the off, and despite team-mate Ross Murdoch closing in, the 23 year old from Livingston held on for the win, touching home in 58.70. Murdoch won silver in 58.85 while Zak Aitchison made it a Stirling 1-2-3 with bronze in 59.39.

After the race Benson said:

 “It’s obviously great to get the win. I’m a little disappointed with the time and would have liked to have gone a bit quicker than that.  I rushed it a bit at the start, managed to compose myself to 75m then didn’t quite have the best back 25m. But I knew I was ahead at the 75m mark so it was a case of just holding on.

“I’ve been doing a lot of work on my start, and my start there was rushed so it kind of threw me off a little bit. I went into a bit of autopilot to be honest with you rather than focus on what I’ve been working on in training, but I’ve got a lot of experience so I could rely on that and bring it home.”

Talking about his preparation leading into the meet, Benson continued:

“Yesterday between heats and final I had to sit a two hour finance exam which isn’t ideal preparation but I’m trying to get as much of my studies out of the way so I can put it to one side and fully focus on the Gold Coast next year.

“I’ve been really enjoying The Commonwealth Games Gathering that’s being run by Scottish Swimming here alongside the meet. It has been brilliant and a really good opportunity for the newcomers on the team to mix in with the more experienced athletes.  Today we had a meeting about travel strategies and that was really interesting and it will make a massive difference for when we are out there.”

Corrie Scott (Edinburgh University) added two more gold medals to the two she won last night (100m breast, 4x50m medley relay) with titles in the 50m breast and 100m IM. Scott underplayed the titles suggesting more work was needed, and said:

“My 50m breast didn’t quite go to plan and it wasn’t as fast as I wanted.  I’ve never been particularly great at short course 50m breaststroke; there is just never enough swimming for me. I’ve stuff to work on ahead of the Gold Coast and I’m really looking forward to that.”

In the two titles Scott won, Katie Robertson (South Ayrshire) broke both Scottish National Junior Records with 31.16 for 50m breaststroke and 1:02.79 for 100m IM.

Other records broken included Archie Goodburn (Warrender) with a new Scottish Junior Record in the 100m breaststroke heats (1:01.52). In the relays, Lucy Hope, Katie Stark, Rachel Masson and Kathryn Greenslade set a new National Club Record for Edinburgh University in the 4x50m freestyle, coming home in 1:40.39, while in the men’s event, University of Edinburgh’s Scott McLay, Craig McLean, Calum Bain and Duncan Scott set a new National Club Record (time to be confirmed).

The Scottish National Short Course Swimming Championships are part of the Team Scotland Series of events and are being held at the Royal Commonwealth Pool in Edinburgh from 8-10 December. The event can be followed on social media using the hashtag #ScotNSC17.

Watch all race highlights on our YouTube channel:

All evening finals are streamed live on

All results from the heats and the finals can be found at