SA Swimming Grand Prix Heads For Durban

The coastal city of Durban will be hosting the second 2015 South African Swimming Grand Prix from 20th to 22nd February at the Kings Park Aquatics Centre.  As part of Swimming SA’s long-term participant development programme for 2016 and 2020, the event is aimed at providing a high level competition for SA’s senior elite athletes.   The Grand Prix started at the Stellenbosch University Swimming Pool last weekend (13 – 15 February) and makes its final stop in Durban.

Olympic gold medalists Chad Le Clos and Cameron Van Der Burgh will once again be the highlight of the competition.  Following an impressive run of four wins at the event in Stellenbosch, Le Clos will be back in his home town, swimming the 100 and 200m butterfly as well as the 100 and 200m freestyle.  Van Der Burgh and Giulio Zorzi will be in it to win it in the 50 and 100m breaststroke races, posting close entry times of 26.76 and 27.68 as well as 58.80 and 1:01.37 respectively.

The 2015 SA Swimming Grand Prix is also hosting USA’s Michael Andrew.  The 15-year old recently broke USA’s National Age Group Record in the 100m breaststroke (1:01.67) and won his first major competition, the 2015 Arena Pro Swim Series in Texas.  Andrew, who is in South Africa for three months, competing and visiting family, showed his great talent when he claimed first position three times, came second twice and occupied third place at the Grand Prix in Stellenbosch and will be looking to claim even more in Durban when he competes in nine events (50 and 100m freestyle, 100m backstroke, 50 and 100m butterfly, 50, 100 and 200m breaststroke and the 50m backstroke).

Other contenders include the likes of Charl Crous, who will be swimming in the 50, 100 and 200m backstroke as well as Myles Brown in the 100, 200, 400m freestyle.  On the ladies side, 25 year-old Karin Prinsloo, who finished first in the 200m freestyle and 200m backstroke the previous weekend, will be looking to make a splash when she races in the 100, 200 and 400m freestyle as well as the 100 and 200m backstroke.  Michelle Weber will strive for fast times in her respective 100, 200, 400 and 800m freestyle events, while Rene Warnes will feature in the 100 and 200m butterfly, the 200m freestyle as well as the 200 and 400m individual medley.

Finishing second in the 200m individual medley and the 100 and 400m freestyle in Stellenbosch, Marlies Ross will be looking to better her performance in the 50, 100, 200 and 400m freestyle, the 200m individual medley and the 100m butterfly races.  The SA Swimming Grand Prix will also see Paralympians Kevin Paul, Charl Bouwer and Craig Groenewald take to the water.  Paul will race in the 50, 100 and 200m breaststroke as well as the 200m individual medley, while Bouwer is entered in the 50 and 100m freestyle, 50m butterfly and the 100m backstroke, with Groenewald competing in an impressive eight events (50, 100, 200 and 400m freestyle, the 200m individual medley, the 100m backstroke, the 50m butterfly and the 100m breaststroke).

The SA Swimming Grand Prix begins on Friday, 20th February with a 17:00 heats session, while the finals of the competition will be held on Saturday and Sunday at 10:00.

Programme:

HEATS – Friday 17:00

FINALS – Saturday 10:00

HEATS – Saturday 17:00

FINALS – Sunday 10:00

800m Freestyle Women

1500m Freestyle Men

400m Individual Medley Men

400m Individual Medley Women

200m Freestyle Women

200m Freestyle Men

100m Freestyle Men

100m Freestyle Women

100m Breaststroke Women

100m Breaststroke Men

50m Breaststroke Men

50m Breaststroke Women

100m Butterfly Women

100m Butterfly Men

100m Backstroke Men

100m Backstroke Women

50m Backstroke Women

50m Backstroke Men

200m Butterfly Men

200m Butterfly Women

200m Individual Medley Women

200m Individual Medley Men

400m Freestyle Men

400m Freestyle Women

50m Freestyle Women

50m Freestyle Men

200m Breaststroke Men

200m Breaststroke Women

200m Backstroke Women

200m Backstroke Men

50m Butterfly Men

50m Butterfly Women

4 x 100m Medley Relay Mixed

4 x 100 Freestyle Relay Mixed

 Photo credit: WESSEL OOSTHUIZEN / SASPA