Saanich swimmers qualify for Worlds, Pan Am Games

Ryan Cochrane qualifies for FINA World Championships in Russia (July 24 to Aug. 9) and Pan Am Games in Toronto (July 10 to 26)

Two-time Olympic medallist Ryan Cochrane earned his berths for this summer’s FINA World Championships in Russia (July 24 to Aug. 9) and Pan Am Games in Toronto (July 10 to 26) with victories in the men’s 400-metre and 1,500m freestyle swims at the Swimming Canada 2015 Trials.

Cochrane clocked three minutes and 47.50 seconds in the 400m, the fifth-fastest time in the world this year.

Fellow Saanich Commonwealth Place swimmer Jeremy Bagshaw, was second in 3:49.76. Bagshaw also qualified for the worlds and Pan Ams by winning the 200m freestyle, and met the Pan Am standard in the 400m free.

“We’re going through one of the hardest years of training,’’ Cochrane said. “There’s been a lot of ups and downs but still it’s been an awesome week of swimming. It’s super inspiring to see how well the younger swimmers are performing.”

UVic’s Jon McKay finished third in the 1,500m, and Saanich’s Keegan Zanatta in seventh.

Saanich-based Hilary Caldwell, a world championship bronze medallist in 2013, was second in the 200m backstroke, three seconds off her record finishing in 2:09.53.

‘In the end all I needed was to get on the teams,’’ Caldwell said. “But I definitely wanted to be a lot faster here.’’

Alec Page was second in the 200m free, clocked a personal best of 1:58.64 to win the men’s 200m fly, and also qualified for the 400m individual medley.

“The 200m fly has always been a secondary event for me so it’s nice to see what I can do,” Page said. “I just wanted to keep pace with the leaders in the first 50 and I felt if I kept on track I could something on the second length.”

National coach Randy Bennett remains on leave undergoing cancer treatment.


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