Ripley swimmer Molly Renshaw wins gold at British International Open
MOLLY Renshaw resumed her battle with Stacey Tadd for the honour of being Britain's best 200m breaststroke swimmer – and came out ahead.
The 16-year-old Ripley star claimed gold at the British International Open last night in Leeds.
It was revenge of a kind for the Derventio eXcel swimmer, the reigning European junior champion, who was not considered for the London Olympics because of the convoluted selection process.
Tadd edged out Renshaw at the British trials 12 months ago and went on to be Team GB's sole representative in the event at the Games.
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The two were locked in a close contest yesterday, as they qualified first and second in the morning heats.
Tadd again was a shade faster than her young rival, clocking 2.29.93 in comparison with Renshaw's 2.30.06.
But Renshaw upped the pace in the final to touch first in 2.28.25, more than two seconds ahead of her 25-year-old rival.
There was an outstanding performance from former Derventio men's captain Chris Steeples, from Church Broughton, in the final of the 100m breaststroke.
Having qualified second fastest in a personal best time, he improved still further in the final, in which he was beaten on the touch by Olympian Michael Jamieson.
Steeples, who now trains with Manchester Aquatics, hit the wall in 1.01.08. Jamieson, who had to enter a swim-off to reach the final after misjudging his pace in the heats, was timed at 1.00.82.
City of Derby's Adam Peaty also qualified for the final in seventh and narrowly missed out on a medal despite another big improvement. The Uttoxeter man clocked 1.01.66 to finish fourth.
The previous evening, Peaty had claimed bronze in the final of the open 50m breaststroke, having qualified eighth fastest in the heats.
He recorded 28.23 seconds in a blanket finish, missing out on gold by a mere 0.11 seconds to winner Ross Murdoch of West Dumbarton with Mark Tully (East Lothian) second. Steeples was fifth in 28.34.
Current Derventio captain Kane Haggett just missed out on a podium position in the 50m freestyle final with fourth place in 22.92, a fractionally slower time than in his heat.
Abbie Wood (Derventio) claimed a bronze medal in the U16 400m individual medley, having also been a finalist in the 200m version of the event.
Long Eaton's Kev Wallbank (Derventio) continued his heavy programme of events and was fifth in the U18 200m butterfly having also made the final of the 100m version.
He was also in the last eight of the U18 100m breaststroke, while James Latham (Derventio) reached the same stage of the U18 final of the 50m breaststroke.
Rebecca Jones (City of Derby) put in a strong show in U16 backstroke, reaching the final of both the 50m and 100m, while her younger club-mate Eleanor Baldwin, also produced encouraging performances in the same events.