MONTREAL – World champion Brent Hayden of Mission, B.C., won the gold medal Sunday in the men’s 100-metre freestyle at the Quebec Cup swimming competition.
Hayden, tuning up for this summer’s Olympic Games clocked 49.14 seconds for his second victory of the meet. Ryk Neethling of South Africa second in 49.35 and Olympic nominee Joel Greenshields of Airdrie, Alta.
“I was hoping to go faster”, said Hayden, the 50 freestyle winner on Saturday. “But considering that my preparation was disrupted to the back injury, I’ll accept it. My start right now really needs improvement and that’s probably because I didn’t do any leg work during the back issue. But for the back itself it’s not an issue anymore I don’t feel any pain anymore.”??
Hayden’s coach and Canada’s Olympic team’s head coach Tom Johnson says improving his star pupil’s start will be a big focus in the weeks of training leading up to the Beijing Games.
“He’s now well enough to dive and get off the blocks so we’re going to be able to the work we need to do to sharpen those up”, said Johnson.
Other winners in men’s competition included Mathieu Bois of Montreal in the 100 breaststroke, Jake Tapp of Langley, B.C., in the 50 backstroke and Andrew Ford of Guelph, Ont., in the 400 indiviidual medley. Bois completed a golden sweep of all three breaststroke events and is also a member of the Olympic team with Tapp.
On the women’s side, Beijing-bound Audrey Lacroix of Pont-Rouge, Que., looked sharp in her 200 butterfly win for her second gold of the meet. Ashley McGregor of Pointe-Claire, Que., and Olympic nominee Victoria Poon of Montreal also collected second wins placing first in the 100 breaststroke and 100 freestyle.
Jennifer Carroll of Montreal took the 50 backstroke and Olympic nominee Alexa Komnarnycky of Etobicoke prevailed in the 400 IM.
Johnson was pleased with performances by the Olympic nominees this weekend.
“Their measuring where they’re at near the end of a hard training period”, said Johnson. “From here, it’s the final preparation stage over the next 40 days to get ready to put our best foot forward in Beijing.”?
Full results at: www.cnppo.net/competitions.php?fic=2&comp=13