Connect with Us:  

Kitson Breaks Canadian Record At Summer Nationals

Aug 5, 2000

Courtesy: Swimming Canada

WINNIPEG--Shona Kitson of Edmonton competing at her final Canadian championships broke the national mark in the women's 50-metre butterfly Friday at the Sears I Can Swim Summer Nationals swimming competition.

Kitson, 22, actually broke the record twice. She swam 27.34 in the semifinal to eclipse the 27.74 mark set by Jessica Amey of Calgary in 1993, then went 27.17 in the final for the gold medal. The 50 fly is not an Olympic event however on Sunday Kitson will look to beat the Olympic team qualifying standard in the 100 butterfly and earn a ticket to Sydney.

"I came here without too many expectations," said Kitson, who'll end her swimming career this winter at the University of Texas where she is completing a business economics degree. "I've been close to the record all year so I knew I had a shot. For the 100 fly I'm much more confident now than I was at the Olympic trials (in June). I think I have a chance to make the team."

In the men's 100 butterfly, Mike Mintenko of Moose Jaw, Sask., equalled his Canadian mark set Thursday night in the semifinal clocking 52.88 for the gold medal.

In the men's 50 freestyle, Thomas Kindler of Montreal put a possible retirement on hold after clocking a personal best 22.97 to win his first career Canadian title. The time was 22/100ths short of the Olympic qualifying standard but it was a big improvement for Kindler.

"I never expected this," said Kindler, who works as a bouncer at two Montreal-area bars in the summer and studies business. "I was actually planning not to come to nationals. I hadn't had much training after the trials and felt I wasn't ready for this meet. I hadn't improved much in the past couple of years."

Other winners included Olympians Mark Versfeld of Vancouver in the 200 backstroke for the men and Marianne Limpert of Fredericton in the 100 freestyle, Kelly Stefanyshyn of Winnipeg in the 100 backstroke, Rhiannon Leier of Winnipeg in the 200 breaststroke and Karine Legault of Montreal in the 800 freestyle for the women.