Olympic swimmer Max Litchfield has started his new season where he left off in the last by recording some great times out in Canada at the World Short Course Championships, in Windsor.
Going into the meet, the Badsworth swimmer – who finished fourth in this summer’s Olympics in his favourite 400 metres individual medley event – had posted a personal best at the recent BUCS Nationals at his home pool at Ponds Forge.
The good form continued when the 21-year-old posted the fastest qualifying time of 4:03.56 in the morning session then, swimming in the final in lane four, he used a strong freestyle leg to claim the silver medal in the men’s 400 individual medley, setting a new British record in the process.
Litchfield went 4:00.66 to break Joe Roebuck‘s mark of 4:01.63 set back in 2009 at the European Championships.
Two-time defending champion Daiya Seto, of Japan, led throughout, winning in a time of 3:59.24. American Josh Prenot and Hungarian David Verraszto jockeyed for the second spot throughout the race, but Litchfield passed both of them on the final 50 metres, bringing it home in 27.05 seconds, the fastest last 50 in the field. He also had the fastest overall freestyle leg at 55.32.
Verraszto won bronze in 4:01.56, while Prenot settled for fourth in 4:01.94.
Max also swam the 400 metres freestyle on the first day of the championships, placing 13th in 3:42.98, a personal best of nearly four seconds.
He finished off the meet with another three second PB in the 200 metres backstroke in 1:54.29 on the final day, setting a new Yorkshire ASA record.
Max is looking at finishing off the year at the National Short Course Championships this weekend at Ponds Forge, Sheffield, while his younger brother Joe flies out to Toronto to represent Great Britain at an international junior meet.