SINGAPORE – Danielle Hanus of Newmarket, Ont., and Canada’s women’s 4×100-m freestyle relay won bronze medals on Saturday at the FINA World Junior Swimming Championships.
In the women’s 50-m backstroke, Hanus posted a personal best 28.26 seconds for her first medal of the competition. Gabrielle Fa-Amausili of New Zealand took the gold in a world junior record 27.81 with Minna Atherton of Australia second in 27.83.
‘’I was able to get my underwater kick going fast enough to keep up with the girls beside me,’’ said Hanus.
In the women’s 4×100-m freestyle relay, Australia took the gold in a world junior record 3:39.87. Russia was second in 3:40.26 and Canada followed in in 3:41.67. The Canadian swimmers were Penny Oleksiak of Toronto, Rebecca Smith of Red Deer, Alta., Mary-Sophie Harvey of Montreal and Taylor Ruck, a Kelowna, B.C., native now based in Arizona.
It was a fifth medal this week for Oleksiak and a fourth for Ruck who clocked a sizzling 53.74 on her relay, the fastest split of the race.
‘’The thing we did well in our swim was our relay takeovers,’’ said Smith. ‘’We were going in ranked fourth and we knew that it would be a tight race to be on the podium and the takeovers would be crucial.’’
Olivia Anderson of Etobicoke, Ont., was Canada’s other finalist. She was seventh in the women’s 1,500-m freestyle in 16:37.03, dropping seven seconds off her personal best.
‘’This was all I could have hoped for,’’ said Anderson. ‘’I was very happy with the consistency of my times. I’ve been trying to work on not fading around the 1,000-1,200 mark so to see that I was in the 33 seconds on almost all the 50s splits was really exciting. After narrowly missing the top eight in the 800, as well as having a disappointing 400, I felt as though I had to redeem myself today.’’
Markus Thormeyer of Delta, B.C., qualified third for Sunday’s 100-m freestyle final clocking third overall in the semis with a personal best 49.59 while Oleksiak qualified fourth for the 100-m butterfly final.
‘’I went out in the first 50 faster than in the prelims,’’ said Thormeyer. ‘’My out speed is something I’ve been working on in this year, so it’s nice to see my race reflect that.’’
Canada reached the 10-medal mark on Saturday with two gold, five silver and three bronze.