Sheffield swimmer Nicholas Grainger was left beaming at the London Aquatics Centre after finishing second in the final of the 400m freestyle at the British Swimming Championships.
Grainger clocked a time of 3.45.89 minutes to finish second behind Millfield’s James Guy, with Daniel Wallace coming home in third.
The qualification criteria for the World Championships in Russia in August is 3.44.58 minutes – meaning Grainger still has some work to do.
But it was certainly a step in the right direction for the Sheffield swimmer, who was left beaming from ear to ear.
“It’s a fantastic swim, I always enjoy doing the 400 freestyle, and it’s got so much fantastic competition,” he said.
“Me and James Guy have always had a really good competition going, we’re really close friends as it is so being there or thereabouts with each other all the time - he’s either slowly catching me or I’m slowly catching him, it’s brilliant to have that rivalry as well as our friendship at the same time.
“It was a tight finish - I like to think that we all push each other on, all us 400 freestyle swimmers because it’s so competitive and we’re all quite close friends, we all do similar events and am all on the same training camps.
“He pushed me to do a faster time and so do Dan Wallace - Dan had a fantastic race on that last 100, it’s so good.
“I’ve got 100 free on Wednesday and that should be a little bit of a laugh I suppose. Then I’ve got the 200 free on the last day and hopefully qualify for the relay team.”
Meanwhile, fellow Sheffield swimmer Rebecca Turner finished fourth in the final of the 100m freestyle, clocking 55.33 seconds in the process.
British new kid on the block Siobhan-Marie O’Connor took top step on the podium, with Fran Halsall back in second and Laruen Quigley in third.
“It was a great race and I gave it my best but it was not quite the result I wanted but we will keep moving forward from here,” she said.
“I gave it my best, of course I am disappointed but there are some great competitors in that final so I can’t complain too much.
“Siobhan is a great competitor and I’m really pleased for her, Fran is a great competitor as well to stay on top for so long but things move on.
“I was on top but I have to keep pushing to try and beat a great competitor like Siobhan.
“My goal coming in was to make the team and to get near my best or beat my best but unfortunately it didn’t happen today but you keep moving forward.
“It’s about resting up for now and getting ready for the 200m, just because this hasn’t gone my way it doesn’t mean it won’t go my way on Saturday.
“It gives me a little bit extra motivation to go out and do well on Saturday so I’ll be back and looking to do well again.”
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