Keanna MacInnes thumbs up 200m Butterfly Sette Colli 2024

Paris prep steps up with hard racing at Sette Colli

25 Jun 2024

Abbie Wood, Ben Proud, Keanna MacInnes and Honey Osrin all claimed gold medals as Aquatics GB's Olympic-bound swimming team got three packed days of hard racing under the belt in the Rome sun at the Sette Colli Trophy over the weekend. 

With all 30 of the Team GB pool swimmers taking to the water at the Foro Italico as final preparations are stepped up with a single month to Paris 2024, it meant a busy schedule for the GB cohort - with execution of race processes, strong swimming and further team gelling all the priorities over podium placings at this stage of the season.

That being said, there were plenty of medal moments - including a trio of Sette Colli titles on the final day of racing, courtesy of Wood, MacInnes and Osrin. 

Wood triumphed with a solid performance in the Women's 200m Individual Medley after earlier watching a pair of British one-twos in the Women's 200m Backstroke and 200m Butterfly events. 

Katie Shanahan took silver in the backstroke after following Osrin into the wall, while Katie's University of Stirling training partner MacInnes got the touch over Laura Stephens in the butterfly contest.

"I'm happy with that swim after many weeks of training. I tried to manage the times per lap as best I could, and I'm very satisfied. This has been a fantastic environment in a beautiful pool where I really wanted to compete and where I swam great," said Honey after her closing race of the meet brought that 200m Backstroke title.

The other Team GB member to claim gold in Rome was soon-to-be triple Olympian Proud, whose sprint freestyle form continues to look eye-catchingly good. 

Honey Osrin smile Aquatics GB Swimming Champs 2024
Honey Osrin

Ben edged out Italian home favourite Leonardo Deplano to take home the Men's 50m Freestyle crown, explaining afterwards the value he always gets from this competition on the path towards the summer's major meet: "Coming to Rome every year to race in Sette Colli is a very good part of our preparation - and it was great to do a good race too.

"Leonardo really tied to my heels, so it was good preparation for me. It's been a good meet, a good race and a beautiful crowd." 

Freya Colbert was a double medallist for the weekend, following up silver in the Women's 200m Freestyle on Friday with bronze over the 400m Individual Medley. In the men's 400m individual medley event, Max Litchfield put together a well-structured eight laps of medley swimming to take silver.

Elsewhere, Angharad Evans looked good in taking Women's 100m Breaststroke silver as she builds towards her Olympic debut in Paris, with further silvers coming for Matt Richards in the Men's 100m Freestyle, Luke Greenbank in the 200m Backstroke and James Guy in the 200m Freestyle. 

Kathleen Dawson (Women's 100m Backstroke), Anna Hopkin (100m Freestyle) and Duncan Scott (Men's 200m Freestyle) all picked up bronzes as they got valuable racing minutes in the bank. 

Matt Richards freestyle finish Sette Colli 2024 [FIN]
Matt Richards [credit: FIN]

Aside from the Olympic Games team, there were strong performances from other British athletes at the Foro Italico, including a Women's 50m Backstroke gold for 2023 World Championship medallist Lauren Cox, while Charlie Hutchison took Men's 400m Individual Medley bronze behind Loughborough Performance Centre teammate Litchfield. 

Alice Tai - who is gearing up for her second Paralympic Games appearance in August - had a full schedule of racing, taking home multiple medals from the para-swimming programme, including golds in both the Women's MC 100m Butterfly and 100m Backstroke events. 

Check out all the results from the 2024 Sette Colli Trophy on the FIN website.

Header image courtesy of FIN [Italian Swimming Federation]

Alice Tai podium shot Sette Colli 2024 [FIN]
Alice Tai (second right) on the podium [credit: FIN]