Smallegange Takes Gold for Canada as UANA Open Water Juniors Begin
Swimming Canada – PLEASANT PRAIRIE, Wisconsin – A 16-year-old’s dramatic gold-medal effort led the way for Team Canada on Day 1 of the UANA Junior Open Water Swimming Championships Friday
Kenna Smallegange, of the Burlington, Ont., Aquatic Devilrays, won the 14-17 year-old women’s 7.5 kilometre race in a photo finish. Her time of 1:38:24.37 was slightly faster than runner-up Elizabeth Fort of the United States.
“Kenna swam a very mature race, slowly working her way through to first position and using the race tactics that she has been taught to great effect,” Perry said.
“It took the judges a long time to confirm the result because it was so close.”
Smallegange said she was confident heading into the race and the tranquil weather was perfect for racing.
Smallegange was surprised when Fort opened a large lead early in the race, but she was undeterred. She made up ground quickly and by the fifth lap the Canadian surged ahead then “held on the rest of the way.”
Smallegange said she learned a lot from the race and predicted it will go a long way in helping her develop skills that will be used in future competitions.
Kate Sullivan of Mount Pearl, N.L., finished seventh in the field of 13 racers.
Meanwhile, Raben Dommann of North Vancouver, B.C., recorded a third-place finish in the men’s 20-and under 10-kilometre race.
Dommann, who also competed at FINA World Championships and most recently the Pan American Games in Lima, Peru, was pleased with his showing.
Dommann said he enjoyed racing and working with teammate Patrick Hussey of Pointe-Claire, Que., who finished sixth in the field of 12.
“It is always an honour to represent Canada internationally and getting all this race experience at a young age will only help me in my long-term development,” Dommann said.
“I feel like I know a lot of theory on open water swimming so it’s getting the opportunity to practise all the different tactics that really helps.”
Coach Perry said Dommann’s victory demonstrated how much he has learned and progressed during his hectic summer racing season.
Overall, he said the team has been professional, calm and drama-free and that showed in the way they were able to execute their respective races.”
Kyla Ross of Victoria placed second in a field of eight in the women’s 20-and-under 10-km race. Rosalie Davidson of St-Jerome, Que., finished fourth in the event won by American Sylvia Stewart.
Alexander Axon of Markham, Ont., was fifth in the men’s 7.5-km race for 14-17 year-olds while David Quirie of Ottawa finished sixth in the field of 12.
The competition in Wisconsin concludes on Sunday with five-kilometre races in four divisions.
Nathan White ネイサン・ホワイト
Senior manager, Communications, Swimming Canada
Gestionnaire supérieur des communications, Natation Canada
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