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Loughborough University

Beijing Olympics 2008

News from Beijing

17 August 2008

Records fall in final swim session

Loughborough’s swimmers set European and British record’s on the final day of action at Beijing’s Water Cube.

Kate Haywood was part of a young British team to set a new European record in the women’s 4x100m relay. The team of Haywood, Gemma Spofforth (who uses Loughborough as her UK base), Jemma Lowe and Fran Halsall finished just outside the medals in 3:57.50 in a fast race that saw winners Australia lower the world record by more than three seconds in 3:52.69. Britain were beaten by USA in silver position and hosts China for bronze.

In the men’s relay, Liam Tancock led out the team in the backstroke leg. Finishing sixth at every turn, the Brit’s failed to challenge for a podium finish and must be content with a new national record of 3:33.69. USA set a new world record for gold, while Australia and Japan claimed the remaining medals.

In the 1500m Freestyle Athens bronze medallist David Davis was unable to repeat the performance of four years ago and finished sixth with a time of 14:52.11. Tunisia’s Oussama Mellouli took a shock win, beating favourite Grant Hackett who finished in silver position.

“I’ve never experienced anything like that in my life,” said Davies. “I did everything I could and felt good at the start of the race. I knew those guys [Hackett and Mellouli] would go out quick, I couldn’t afford to lose them.

“My heart was really pounding and I was running on empty, I ran out of gas. It’s just not good enough.

"I've done everything to recover from Friday’s heat; had ice baths, massage, ate well. The second half of the race was so hard and the other guys have done so well to recover and come back like they did.

“The 1500m has moved on, there are so many guys who swim totally different races. I would have liked to have gone quicker, but now I've got to concentrate on getting recovered again so I'm ready for the 10k open water. The 10k is a totally different challenge, a different test, so we will have to see what happens.

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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