Swimming New Zealand homepage

The start of something extraordinary

Boyle Splashes Into the Unknown at World Short Course Swimming

New Zealand Olympic swim star Lauren Boyle enters unknown waters when the world short course championships begin in Turkey tomorrow.

The 24 year old, who was fourth in the 800m freestyle in London, comes into the championships as her first competition since the Olympics.

Boyle leads a six-strong New Zealand team in the five-day championships, with the North Shore swimmer satisfied that she is in good shape.

“My preparation has been has been good. While it would have been of benefit to get in a couple of racing experiences before this meet, I also rate the down time I had since the Olympics.”

Boyle is the top ranked New Zealand swimmer, coming in ranked sixth in the 800m freestyle and seventh over the 400m freestyle, which she swims on days two and three respectively.

She said that skills are paramount in the 25m championships.  “In short course racing turns become even more of a focus. There is more of an emphasis on breath control and maximising the time you spend under the water.  I enjoy short course racing because it stimulates me in different ways than long course racing does.”

She faces some tough competition from the likes of Lotte Friis (DEN), twice world short course champion, London Olympic gold and silver medallist Allison Schmidtt (USA) and the overall World Cup winner Katinka Hosszu from Hungary.

“I have very good competition in both and the 400 comes the morning after the 800 final so those two days will be intense and demanding. It would be great to improve my rankings and times. “

Her fellow North Shore swimmer Melissa Ingram, on the back of some outstanding form in the recent World Cup circuit, is ranked sixth in the 200m backstroke, the event in which she won a bronze medal in 2004.

Team veteran Ingram has come off an outstanding World Cup series where she won five times in the 200m backstroke and was runner-up on the other three occasions.

Her best is only two seconds off the top seed which is Elizabeth Simmonds (GBR) while Ingram will also resume her battles with Ukraine’s Daryna Zevina from the World Cup campaign.

The other top ranked Kiwi swimmer is Matthew Stanley from Matamata who is eighth fastest in the men’s 400m freestyle and 10th in the 200m freestyle.

Stanley, who competed in the London Olympics after making huge gains in 2012, impressed with one win and two second placings in the 400m freestyle in the Asian legs of the World Cup.

“I don’t really have any specific goals, just to swim as fast as I can and it would be nice to make a final. That would be a benchmark for me,” Stanley said.

“All I want to do is go out and swim faster than I did in the World Cup and hopefully that will put me in a final and hopefully I can swim up with the best.”

The rest of the team are venturing to a major international for the first time and will be looking for personal bests to potentially push into semifinals.

Corey Main, 17, claimed his place in the team with his first national open title at the short course championships in the 100m backstroke. The age group champion on both sides of the Tasman is starting on his path to the Rio Olympics and is looking to advance his ranking of 20th in this event tomorrow.

His Howick Pakuranga clubmate and fellow teenager Ewan Jackson is also in action on the opening day in the 200m freestyle with Stanley. Like Main he will be looking to improve his international ranking although his better chance will come in the 400m freestyle where he is ranked 12th fastest.

Queenland-based Cantabrian Cameron Simpson faces a busy schedule in the 50m and 100m freestyle and 50m butterfly starting on day two.

New Zealand has won eight individual and two relay medals at the world short course championships over the last 20 years, with the last coming at Manchester in 2008 when Moss Burmester won the gold medal in the 200m butterfly and the men’s medley relay won a bronze medal.

CAPTION: Lauren Boyle

The image is free for editorial use only. Mandatory credit: Photosport

NOTE: A daily wrap and results will be forwarded at approximately 10am each day, with an audio interview. There are some limited opportunities to gain direct interviews with swimmers.

For further information contact:
Media Manager

Swimming NZ High Performance
Sports Media NZ Ltd
Tel 09 2327822
Mob 0275 613181
E: ian@sportsmedianz.com
Skype: kiwiheps