Chalmers eyes 200m on Games debut
Posted on 12/17/18 5:03 PM
Success in the 200m freestyle at the Gold Coast Commonwealth Games will determine whether Olympic champion Kyle Chalmers takes the event seriously and reinvents himself as the pool’s sprint king.
The 19-year-old is more known for his 100m freestyle prowess after stunning the world with his Rio gold medal triumph.
But Chalmers is considering following in the footsteps of n head coach Jacco Verhaeren’s former charge Pieter van den Hoogenband and becoming a double sprint threat by adopting the 200m at major meets.
Any move however will depend on how results pan out at the six-day Gold Coast swimming meet starting on Thursday.
“Eventually I’d like to race the 200m internationally,” said Chalmers, who surprised himself by winning the national 200m freestyle title at last month’s trials.
“I’ll probably train for the 200m and then come to the 100m so it’s good to be finally racing it.
“I guess we will see at this meet how I go with a busier program than normal and if I’m going to take it further.
“But the 200m is probably more compatible with how I train and how my body is so I’m excited to race it here.”
Chalmers credited the 200m with helping him rediscover his mojo.
The teenager admitted he was down in confidence ahead of last month’s trials after taking 2017 off to undergo surgery for a heart condition.
But claiming 200m gold early at the trials – remarkably the Olympic champion’s first national title – turned everything around.
He went on to also secure his maiden 100m national crown at the meet – eight months after winning the event at the Olympics – to ensure he had a spring in his step on Games debut.
“Trials gave me a lot of confidence,” Chalmers said.
“I swam Queensland states and Victorian states and probably didn’t swim as well as I was expecting … and I probably went into trials lacking confidence in a way.
“The 200m was the first race for me and to swim well and get a PB made that meet and gave me the confidence to swim well in the 100m.”
Chalmers will launch his Games campaign in Friday’s 200m heats.
Besides his pet 100m event, Chalmers is also tipped to inspire ‘s 4x100m and 4x200m relay teams.