This weekend the second leg of FINA’s inaugural Champions Swim Series rolled into the Hungarian capital of Budapest and proved fruitful for Britain’s swimmers, with six trips to the individual podium.
With medals under his belt from the opening leg in Guangzhou a few weeks earlier, Ben Proud led the British attack and started strongly with gold in the Men’s 50m Freestyle, repeating the feat he achieved in China. Putting together a tidy swim, the Plymouth Leander swimmer commented:
“It felt great to race against three very fast guys. It really pushes you and you want to make sure you get all the tiny details right. I feel like I did that today.”
The reigning 50m butterfly world champion returned to the pool to finish fourth in that event to cap off a good day’s work.
Next to etch their name onto the list of Budapest medallists was Georgia Davies. Last time out in China she secured bronze in the 50m Backstroke but under the lights of the Duna Arena she went one better and touched second for silver.
Making his Champions Swim Series debut was Stirling-based Ross Murdoch and he battled hard and bagged himself the bronze in the Men’s 100m Breaststroke. Holly Hibbott and Imogen Clark also secured third place finishes in the 400m Freestyle and 50m Breaststroke events respectively.
Bringing day one of racing to close was a Mixed 4x100m Freestyle relay, which was composed of swimmers from multiple different nations. Siobhan-Marie O’Connor was part of the winning quartet, claiming her first series win. Holly Hibbott also took to the pool for her second swim of the night and sealed silver in that event alongside hometown hero Laszlo Cseh.
O’Connor was back in the thick of the action on day two, winning bronze in the Women’s 200m Individual Medley with another home favourite, Katinka Hosszu, sending the crowd into raptures as she struck gold.
There was also a trio of fourth place finishes for Alys Thomas, Georgia Davies and O’Connor, in the 200m Butterfly, 100m Backstroke and 100m Breaststroke respectively.
Rounding out the second leg of the three meet Champions Swim Series was more relay action, Imogen Clark securing silver as part of one of the Mixed 4x100m Medley quartets, whilst Holly Hibbott secured bronze, her third medal of the weekend.
Full results from Budapest can be found here.