Michael Mincham - Mayfair Pools National Age Group Swimming Championships – Day 1 Wrap
Australian-based Michael Mincham from Auckland shone amid a rush of quality performances on the opening night of the Mayfair Pools National Age Group Championships in Wellington.
The championships at the Wellington Regional Aquatic Centre are also the official trials for swimmers to be considered for the Junior Pan Pacific Championships in Hawaii and the second Youth Olympics in China, both in August.
Three swimmers per event can be considered for selection for the Junior Pan Pacific Championships while there is a maximum of two male and two female swimmers in total for the Youth Olympics team.
Tonight four swimmers went under the qualifying mark for the Junior Pan Pacs, a major championship involving full strength teams from the likes of USA, Canada, Japan and Australia. And a total of nine swimmers bettered the qualifying mark for the Youth Olympics.
Leading the way was Mincham, the outstanding Waterhole club prospect, who currently trains on scholarship at The Southport School on the Gold Coast.
Mincham, 17, clocked 3:59.11 to win the 17-18 years 400m freestyle which was well under the qualifying times for both the Youth Olympics and the Junior Pan Pacs.
He pushed the field along with the first four swimmers under the time set for the Junior Pan Pacs. The Waikato pair of Bradlee Ashby (Fairfield) in 4:01.34 and Sam Perry (St Peters) in 4:01.51 was second and third respectively while Howick Pakuranga’s Dominic Mildon was fourth in 4:01.78.
The selection times are 4:02.22 for the Junior Pan Pacs and 4:01.68 for the Youth Olympics.
While he was focussed on the processes for a good performance, Mincham had the qualifying times in his mind.
“It was definitely a bit of both. I wanted to go really hard for the Youth Olympics time and at the same time I wanted to swim my own race,” Mincham said.
“The other guys were really fast and I had to build the back end of the 400.
“It’s great on the Gold Coast. I couldn’t ask for a better place to train than Southport. The training environment is amazing.
“My other target this week is the 800m freestyle. I am targeting another qualifying time and better what I did at the Opens and go sub 8:07.”
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