Wiffen Stars on Opening Day of Swimming’s Winter Championships

On an opening day, where Daniel Wiffen set a new European Record in the 800m Freestyle, the Irish National Winter Championships got off to a blistering start at the Sport Ireland National Aquatic Centre.

Earlier today, Wiffen became the first swimmer in Irish history to break a European Swimming Record, achieving this on home soil, in 7:25.96.

The first Irish record of the meet went to Ards Swimming Club this morning when they broke their own 4x50m Freestyle Irish Club Relay Record. Ellie McCartney, Grace Davison, Zophia Quigley, and Victoria Catterson combined for a time of 1:44.03.

The third record of the day came from Dolphin’s Jack Cassin, setting a new junior standard of 54.56, breaking Eoin Corby’s 2020 record of 54.76. Corby won that Final in 54.33.

In the 100m Breaststroke Corby, Andrew Moore and Darragh Greene were the only three under the minute mark to take gold, silver, and bronze, Corby touching first in 58.43 ahead of Moore in 59.62 and Greene in 59.93.

In the women’s 100m Individual Medley Final, Tokyo Olympian Ellen Walshe, returning to racing for the first time in a year, won gold in 59.87 ahead of team-mate Molly Mayne in 1:00.44. Mayne had earlier won the women’s 100m Breaststroke Final in 1:06.21.

Evan Bailey of New Ross was crowned National Champion in the Men’s 100m Freestyle Final. Bailey took gold in 49.08 ahead of Tokyo Olympian Finn McGeever (49.29).

In the Women’s 100m Freestyle Final Ards’ Victoria Catterson claimed gold in 54.66 with just .04 of a second separating Erin Riordan (NCD) for silver in 55.03 and Danielle Hill (Larne) for Bronze in 55.07.

The Men’s 200m Butterfly National Title went to Lisburn’s Adam Colgan in 2:02.27, while in the women’s final, Banbridge’s Alana Burns-Atkin won gold in 2:15.54.

Tokyo Olympian Shane Ryan, returning to competition after shoulder surgery earlier in the year, won the 50m Backstroke in 23.61 and UCD’s Jena McDougald took the women’s title in 27.91.

In the 800m Finals, Wiffen took gold in that European Record followed by Lisburn’s Jack Fleming (8:15.07) and Limerick’s Denis O’Brien (8:21.26). Trojan’s Rebecca Friel won the women’s gold in 9:07.82 with Asgard’s Hazel Bentley claiming silver in 9:11.73 and New Ross’ Ruth Kelly bronze in 9:18.24.

Competition continues tomorrow through to Saturday.


Live Stream: Swim Ireland YouTube channel

Results: Live Timing or Meet Mobile App (search 2022 Irish National Winter Championships)

Schedule: Heats 9.30am/Finals 5pm