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The start of something extraordinary

Record for Gasson, Hunter & Fa’amausili to defend honours on day three

Rio Olympian Helena Gasson set a New Zealand record during this morning’s heats of the Swimming New Zealand Short Course Championships in Auckland today.

Gasson (North Shore) was the fastest qualifier in the 100m individual medley, setting a new New Zealand record in the process with a time of 1:01.21.

In the men’s event fellow North Shore swimmer Wilrich Coetzee, who has already claimed three titles this week and is the current champion in the event, was quickest in the heats in 55.20 ahead of Australian Donald Cameron (56.11) and Coast’s Taine Johnston (56.57).

The men’s 50m freestyle will be one to watch tonight as Daniel Hunter (Howick Pakuranga) looks to defend his title.

Hunter clocked 22.13 with his nearest rivals, Orinoco Fa’amausili-Banse (Roskill) and Julian Weir (Aquabladz New Plymouth), touching in 22.65 and 22.69 respectively.

In the women’s event world junior champion Gabrielle Fa’amausili (United) was the only one to dip under the 25 second mark clocking 24.96 ahead of 15-year-old Chelsey Edwards (SwimZone) and Gasson.

Hokitika’s George Schroder, a member of the Swimming New Zealand high performance centre, will be looking to add the 200m breaststroke title to his win in the 100m from the opening night after topping qualifiers in 2:09.10, more than five seconds ahead of North Shore’s Jacob Garrod.

Catilin Delany (Tasman) was the top qualifier in the women’s event in 2:30.91 from Ellie Eastwood (United) in 2:32.04 and Cassandra van Breugel (Australia) in 2.32.13. Porirua’s Bronagh Ryan, who has so far claimed honours in the 50m and 100m breaststroke, was eighth fastest.

The men’s 400m freestyle heats were topped by Australian Andrew Spoor in 3:54.41 followed by Zac Reid (Aquabladz New Plymouth) in 3:54.64 and Michael Mincham (United) in 3:55.93.

The evening finals session begins at 6pm, with the championships also the official qualifying meet for December’s FINA World Short Course Championships. The championships run until Thursday.

CAPTION: Gabrielle Fa'amausili. Credit: BW Media.

NZ Short Course Championships