PE Ledger

Tessa Cieplucha, Canadian women’s relay team win gold at the World Short Course Championships

World Short Course Championships

In the women’s 200m freestyle, Rebecca Smith takes silver.

On Thursday in Abu Dhabi, the Canadian women got off to a terrific start at the global short-course swimming championships, winning three medals, including two golds.

In a personal-best effort, Tessa Cieplucha won gold in the women’s 400-meter individual medley.

Cieplucha of Georgetown, Ont., took the lead for good at the 250m mark and finished in four minutes 25.55 seconds, 0.97 seconds faster than Ellen Walshe of Ireland. Melanie Margalis of the United States took bronze in 4:26.63.

“I wanted to go out and give it my best because this is the last meet of the year,” Cieplucha said. “It was really painful on the last leg, but I kept urging myself to keep going.”

“I’m pretty pleased with the race,” Cieplucha remarked. “I knew going into this meet that it would be one of the most difficult. It feels amazing to be off to a good start on a hectic week, and I’m hoping to keep the momentum going.”

World Short Course Championships

Bailey Anderson of Smith Falls, Ont., was the only other Canadian in the race, finishing sixth. She finished in 4:28.97 seconds.

In the 4x100m freestyle relay, Canada tied for first place.

With a timing of 3:28.52, Canada and the United States tied for first place in the women’s 4x100m freestyle relay. With a time of 3:28.80, Sweden took third place and bronze. It was a Canadian women’s national record.

Kayla Sanchez of Scarborough, Ont., was the first to compete for Canada and took the lead right away. Olympic champion Maggie Mac Neil of London, Ont., who withdrew from her 100 back semifinals to fine-tune for the relay final, retained Canada’s small lead until Rebecca Smith entered the pool and extended it by over two seconds.

Katerine Savard of Pont-Rouge, Que., swam a respectable time as the anchor, but Abbey Weitzeil of the United States had the quickest lap and caught up to Savard at the wall.

“On the blocks, I was trembling. I knew I was the slowest on the squad, but I had a task to accomplish at the finish of the race, and I wanted to retain our lead “Savard stated. “The last couple of strokes, I didn’t breathe because I simply wanted to contact the wall.”

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