Swimming | 2021 Australian Olympic Swimming Trials Report

2021 Australian Olympic Swimming Trials – SA Aquatic & Leisure Centre, 12/06/21 – 17/06/21

There is no way that anyone could have predicted that there would be a 5-year quadrennial between the 2016 Rio Olympics and the 2020 Tokyo Olympic Games, but in just another instance whereby COVID-19 has forced us to remain adaptable, the 2021 Australian Olympic Swimming Trials were held at the SA Aquatic and Leisure Centre in Adelaide, from the 12th to the 17th of June 2021.

The Olympic Trials is no ordinary swim meet.  It is by far the largest and highest stakes meet on the domestic Swimming calendar.  This was my fourth Olympic Trials as a Coach, and the experience was no less exhilarating than the first.  It was a privilege to have 3 young Trinitarians competing at the meet, H Hoang (9Ta), G Wilczak (11Ar) and C Dryer (12Sc) and watch them experience firsthand both the elation and devastation that a meet like the Olympic trials can produce.

The hype around the pool was amazing, as it was awash with bright lights, large crowds, and television cameras everywhere.  The event was telecast live on Amazon Prime around the globe, and the racing was unbelievably fast with a range of new World, Commonwealth and Australian records being set throughout the meet. 

A. McDonald and E. Marks
A. Paradzik with J. Simat and T. Elliott
R. Hansen and K. Chalmers

Amongst the elite swimmers who qualified to take the chance of turning their dreams into reality and be selected onto the Australian team to represent the nation at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics, were numerous Trinity Gramar School Alumni.  This included T Elliot (2013), E Marks (2014), J Simat (2015), N Zhu (2017), A McDonald (2019), A Paradzik (2019) and R Hansen (2019).  Some of the old boys now live and compete for various clubs around the country, whilst others are still local and are now casual employees of the School, but all like to keep abreast and ask how our current (and future) cohorts of Trinity Swimmers are faring and if they still hold their coveted School Records!

H. Hoang 9Ta

H Hoang (9Ta) was the youngest male competitor at the meet at only 14 years of Age.    Fresh off his National Age group success in April, he was again successful at lowering his personal best times in both the 100m (58.25) and 200m (2.06.43) Backstroke events.  It was nice to have some of his former teachers at the Preparatory School text to find out his racing schedule, so they could watch his events live.  He is a terrific ambassador for the School, and I am hopeful that the experience of the meet will help propel him onto greater things in the not-too-distant future. 

G. Wilczak 11Ar

G Wilczak (11Ar) competing at his first Olympic Trials was very enthusiastic as he took everything about the meet in his stride.  He was successful in swimming seasonal best times in both the 200m Freestyle (1.54.85) and the 400m Freestyle (4.03.09), again only 5 short weeks since the National Age titles.  His professional approach to his Swimming is admirable and commendable.  He will be a swimmer to watch over the Summer, as we head into the 2022 CAS campaign. 

C. Dryer 12Sc

C Dryer (12Sc) qualified to compete in numerous events at the trials but only had eyes to compete in one, the 200m Butterfly.  This is his favored event, and the one which he recently became the National Age group Champion.  He was seeded into the very first heat, along with the fastest qualifier for the event – who is now heading to Tokyo for the Olympics.  But this added pressure of being in a seeded heat, saw Caleb swim a fraction slower than his performance at the Age Championships (2.03.66) and narrowly miss a night time swim.  Caleb’s focus will now be all towards his studies, as he prepares for his Year 12 IB exams.

It is extremely hard to try and re-create or simulate the pressure situations faced by the participants at the Olympic Trials or even the CAS Championships, thus the experience of the competition will hold our current and former Trinitarians in good stead further down the pool if they are fortunate enough to trial again to represent their country at the Olympic Games (in only 3 short years!).

Yours in Swimming,

Benjamin Tuxford | Director of Swimming

2021 – Australian Olympic Swimming Trials (SA Aquatic & Leisure Centre, 12/06/21 – 17/06/21)

H Hoang (9Ta)100 Back 29th200 Back 25th
14 Years58.252.06.43
G Wilczak (11Ar)400 Free 28th200 Free 58th
17 Years4.03.091.54.85
C Dryer (12Sc)200 Fly 18th
17 Years2.03.66
R Hansen (2019)100 Fly 25th
19 Years55.08
A McDonald (2019)200 Free 36th100 Free 32nd50 Free 37th
19 Years1.51.7950.5423.42
A Paradzik (2019)100 Back 40th100 Free 92nd
20 Years1.00.2853.79
N Zhu (2017)100 Breast 27th200 Breast
21 Years1.04.68DQ
J Simat (2015)200 Free 32nd100 Free 29th200 IM 10th
23 Years1.51.5550.512.03.66
E Marks (2014)100 Free 91st100 Fly 6th
25 Years53.2952.71
T Elliott (2013)100 Breast 14th200 IM 11th100 Fly 26th
26 Years1.02.832.03.7955.11


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