Longford swimming star Darragh Greene
Swim Ireland’s Irish Winter Meet got underway at the Sport Ireland National Aquatic Centre on Thursday with a select group of Ireland’s elite athletes racing across three days.
A small and select group of Ireland’s elite athletes, including 25-year-old Longford star Darragh Greene, had their first races in a 50m pool since March with the competition taking a unique format of short course (25m pool) heats and long course (50m pool) finals.
Tokyo Olympian Darragh had to settle for a second place finish in the 50m Breaststroke on Day One of the Winter Meet due to the record breaking form of National Centre Limerick’s Eoin Corby who set a new junior standard.
18-year-old Corby broke his own record of 28.33, clocking up 27.76 just ahead of National Centre Dublin’s Darragh Greene in 27.81 in the final of this event on Thursday evening.
Top class swimmers Greene and Corby are set to clash again in the 100m Breaststroke today (Friday) with the 200m Breaststroke event scheduled for Saturday at the NAC.
This Winter Meet replaces the Irish National Short Course Championships, which would usually take place this weekend and would regularly attract up to 600 competing athletes.
It is essentially a time trial competition with no medal ceremonies.
Speaking ahead of the meet, Swim Ireland National Performance Director Jon Rudd said: "We are very excited to be able to host this competition for the relatively small number of Performance athletes that are permitted to race at this time.
"It will be good to see where our potential Olympians for Tokyo and our other international prospects for 2021 are at this juncture.
"We are only able to accommodate around 10% of those athletes that would normally race at this time, under the current regulations, and what would have been a National Championships in more normal times, is simply a racing opportunity against the stopwatch for our premier swimmers.”