Tatjana Schoenmaker continued her golden run of late 2020 form when she added the 200m breaststroke gold medal to her tally in a new African record time and Fina Qualification at the National Short-Course Championships in Pietermaritzburg.
Schoenmaker touched the wall in 2min 18.02sec, taking 0.18sec off her previous mark.
Later, Schoenmaker went on to set another African record, this time in the 50m breaststroke, of 30.20 ahead of Caitlin de Lange in 31.62 and Kaylene Corbett in 31.75.
‘The improvement is small but it’s still there, which is very exciting. This is one of my best swims for this season,’ said Schoenmaker of her 200m effort.
Joining the African record holder on the Fina Qualification list was Corbett, who finished second to Schoenmaker with a time of 2:22.43, while the bronze in the event was claimed by Emily Visagie in 2:25.91.
‘I am very very happy, considering the situation of the season and my training. We have had to get creative with a lot of home work-outs but it has shown me how much I love swimming since I couldn’t be in the pool,’ said Corbett.
In the 100m individual medley, it was Aimee Canny and Rebecca Meder who earned Fina Qualification times.
Canny posted a new South African record in the process of 1:00.31, shedding 0.08secs from Tayla Lovemore’s 2018 time of 1:00.39, while Meder finished with the silver medal in a FINA Qualification time of 1:00.57. De Lange won the bronze in 1:02.93.
‘Going in, I didn’t expect that time and Rebecca went out hard and I tried to stay with her as long as I could and it was an amazing race. When I turned after the breaststroke, we were neck and neck and I sprint the freestyle, so I knew I had the win,’ said Canny.
Meder went one better in the 100m backstroke, claiming the top spot in 59.80, followed by Kristen Straszacker in 1:01.77 and Michaela de Villiers in 1:03.02, while Canny won the silver in the 100m freestyle in 54.27 behind Erin Gallagher in 53.90 and ahead of Inge Weidemann in 55.75.
Gallagher bagged her second gold of the evening in the 50m butterfly in 26.60, with Weidemann coming in second in 27.39 and Natalie Landmann third in 27.40.
With seven gold medals out of seven races, Matthew Sates dominated the 100m individual medley with a Fina qualification time of 52.87 and also grabbed the 100m freestyle win in 48.33 and the 50m butterfly gold in 23.55.
Matthew Bosch and Douglas Erasmus claimed the silver and bronze in the freestyle, touching the wall in 49.07 and 49.18, the second and third place in the medley went to Pieter Coetze and Luca Holtzhausen in 54.43 and 56.36, while the rest of the butterfly medal podium was made up of Coetze and Daniel Ronaldson in 24.10 and 24.11, respectively.
Coetze also won the 100m backstroke with a time of 52.55 ahead of Martin Binedell in 54.04 and Ruard van Renen in 54.90, while Ayrton Sweeney was very happy with his gold medal in the 200m breaststroke in 2:10.35 followed by Kian Keylock in 2:12.43 and Matthew Randle in 2:13.37.
Dune Coetzee won her second gold medal, this time in the 200m butterfly in 2:13.99 to Leigh McMorran’s 2:18.55 and Carli Antonopoulous’ 2:19.85, while Ross Hartigan claimed the gold in the men’s 200m butterfly in 1:58.29 to Ruan Rass’ 2:01.22 and Ruan Breytenbach’s 2:02.26.
The men’s 50m breaststroke gold medal was claimed by Brenden Crawford in 27.87, with the silver going to Jordan Royle in 28.01 and the bronze to Luke Ashton in 28.33.
During the morning heats session, Christian Sadie celebrated three new South African Records in the 100m breaststroke, the 50m butterfly and the 100m backstroke S7 multi-disability category, clocking 1:21.78, 30.03 and 1:12.59, respectively.