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Le Clos strikes gold

Our swimmers struck paydirt in Italian waters this week, bringing back a bagful of medals at the Sette Colli competition in Pescara.

Young Chad Le Clos of Durban continues to build his reputation in global swimming as he won gold in the 200m butterfly.

The scene was set on Thursday as Wendy Trott won bronze in the 400m freestyle. The race was won in a blistering 4min 03.12sec by Italy’s Federica Pellegrini. Just over a second separated Trott from second placed Agnes Mutina (Hungary) who touched the wall in 4:09.37 to Trott’s 4:10.49.

The ladies 50m backstroke was won by Great Britain’s Elizabeth Simmonds (28.61sec) to the 29.01sec of Ariana Barbieri with Chanelle van Wyk winning bronze with 29.32sec.

Day two kicked off with a bronze in the 400m individual medley by our Kathryn Meaklim. Zsuzsanna Jakobs was way too strong for the field, going away from them with her win of 4:44.17. Stefania Pirozzi was second (4:46,82) before Meaklim rounded off the podium in 4:53.37.

Trott won her second medal of the gala, with a silver in her more favored 800m freestyle. The win went to Federica Pelligrini (gold medal winner in the 400m free). Pellegrini was always in the lead, but only after the 500m mark was she able to open the gap over Trott to eventually win by just over three seconds (8:28.40 ÔÇô 8:31.73). The bronze went to Martina Caramignola (8:43.42)

Le Clos then comfortably won the men’s 200m butterfly in 1:58.63. Francesco Vespe finished second (1:59.45) ahead of Francesco Pavone who touched the wall in 1:59.67 for the final podium spot. Pavone went out way to fast, turning at halfway in 1:28.33 ahead of Le Clos and Vespe who were both timed at 1:28.84 at 100m.

To end the night, golden boy Cameron van der Burgh clocked 27.82sec ahead of Fabio Scozzolil (27.82sec) and Luca Residori’s 28.32sec in the 50m breaststroke.