Thursday, June 28, 2018

Thorpe, Shanahan win early titles on opening day of Championships

The first medals of the Scottish National Open Swimming Championships were won today at Tollcross International Swimming Centre in Glasgow, with Jack Thorpe and Katie Shanahan making early trips to the podium.

In what was a very tight final, Thorpe (Edinburgh University), showed his intent, hitting the front quickly in the 100m freestyle. Sam Irvine (Loughborough University) and Scott McLay (University of Stirling) gave chase but in the end the Commonwealth Games bronze medallist touched home in 50.01 to take the title. Irvine claimed silver in 50.62, while McLay took the bronze in 50.84.

After the race Thorpe said,

“I chatted with Chris (Jones) after the heat this morning about what was going to change for tonight to help sharpen up the skills - the dive, the turn etc. I wanted to go out with a bit of intent which is what I did tonight and followed through.

“The 100m free has been my main focus for the last few years and coming off the back of the Commonwealth Games it is still very much my main focus as we run into Tokyo in 2020.

“My long term aim is definitely Tokyo. I’ll be shooting for podium at British Champs at the end of next month in the hope that there is a fast group of four lads that have a shot of a relay position.”

Speaking about the work he and his coach Chris Jones have been doing, Thorpe continued,

“Chris and I have developed a good rapport over the years and we’ve learned what works and what doesn’t. We can bounce ideas off each other and I think it’s about being smart with the training rather than absolutely destroying the meters and intensity. It’s about being clever in what we are doing and focusing on those one percents.”

14 year old Katie Shanahan swam a superb tactical race in the final of the 400m IM. The City of Glasgow Swim Team athlete held her own amongst a more experienced field, showing her strength during the backstroke leg and holding her nerve taking the title in 4:51.16, a five second PB. Orla Adams (University of Aberdeen Performance Swim Team) secured silver in 4:52.40, while Candice Hall from Loughborough University claimed bronze in 4:53.17.

After the race a delighted Shanahan said,

“I am so happy to have won my first senior title. I’m not going to lie, it was really hard. I decided to go out fast in the fly as I thought, why not just race these other older girls. The backstroke leg I knew would be strong as that’s one of my main events. I knew I would just have to hold on in the breaststroke leg, there were a lot of good breaststroke girls in that field. But then I saw I had turned ahead so I just kicked hard and did everything to maintain my lead and pull away from them.

“I’m at the British Summer Championships at the end of July and I’m hoping to win some titles there. I won two there last year and am looking to do better again this year. I’ve still got a number of races ahead of me this weekend including the 200m IM and I’m looking to do well in that. 

University of Aberdeen Performance Swim Team athlete, Toni Shaw (S9), broke the Scottish Record for 100m butterfly in both the heats and the final. Team Scotland’s youngest athlete at the Gold Coast touched home in 1:09.57 and was pleased with her performance; she said,

“I’m really pleased with that and surprised to have pb’d so soon after Trials (British Para-Swimming International Meet).

“The European Championships will be my first senior meet for the British Team so I’m really excited to be a part of that.”

The full list of results can be found on the Swim Scotland website:

The schedule of events can be found HERE

The draft programme can be found HERE

The event can also be followed on social media by using #SNOC18 as hashtag, as well as on Scottish Swimming’s website,