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Loughborough University

Beijing Olympics 2008

News from Beijing

8 August 2008

Loughborough relay girls in good form for Games

Jo JacksonLoughborough’s Caitlin McClatchey and Mel Marshall are part of a British 4x200m Freestyle squad looking forward to testing their relay credentials against the world’s best.

The squad, which also includes Joanne Jackson who has been based at Loughborough since the Olympic Trials in March, Rebecca Adlington who trains twice a week at the University pool and Liverpool-based Fran Halsall, is hoping to repeat success achieved during the build-up to the Games.

“Pretty much all of our girls have swum personal bests this year,” says women’s team head coach Ben Titley, a Loughborough graduate based at the University. “I still think the Americans are by far the favourites, but that doesn’t mean we can’t challenge them.

“This year we’ve had a few opportunities to race the relay and try some new quartets as we’ve gone through.

“Going back to March this year we swam in the European long course and smashed the British record to finish second to France.

“Then we had the world short course championships in Manchester. Again we finished second, just, but again broke the British record. We actually beat the world record, but got beaten by the team from the Netherlands.

“Then in mid-season, in June, we swam well again in Rome. It was another different quartet and they went there and swam a very competitive time.

“If we can repeat those sorts of performances then our preparations will have gone well.”

About to swim in her second Olympic Games, 21-year-old Jackson was a member of that April 2008 silver medal winning 4x200m freestyle relay team in Manchester and says that preparations have been going well.

“It’s gone from strength to strength so we just have to produce that on the day. We did it at the world short course in Manchester, where we all swam well and got a silver medal.

“We’ve all posted bests this year and we’ve dropped the British record by quite a bit.

“If we can all hit our best and swim as a team then we’ve got a good shot.”

The women's 4x200m Freestyle heats and finals take place on Wednesday 13 and Thursday 14 August.

Loughborough University - Beijing 2008

Beijing facts

There are 55 Loughborough athletes in action at the Beijing Olympic and Paralympic Games.

Did you know?

Former Olympic Champion Sebastian Coe is a Loughborough graduate.

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