Silver and Bronze for Jackson and Adlington in Rome

26th July 2009

Joanne Jackson and Rebecca Adlington won the British Gas swimming team’s first medals as they took silver and bronze respectively in the women’s 400m Freestyle.

The final was set to be one of the fastest in history and it didn’t disappoint as Federica Pellegrini became the first woman in history to break the 4:00 mark for the 400m Freestyle.

The race had the home-crowd and the British Gas team on their feet as Jackson got off to the best start and turned in the lead at the 50m mark.

Pellegrini took the lead from Jackson at the 100m point and the Olympic bronze medallist remained just on her shoulder for the remainder of the race.

At the 300m mark Pellegrini was turning inside her own world record and Jackson remained half a second behind her.

Adlington was lying in third place from the 100m mark and in the final 50m she closed in on Jackson. Pellegrini touched in a world record time of 3:59.15 and Jackson won the silver in new British record time of 4:00.60. Adlington took bronze in a new personal best time of 4:00.79.

“It seemed like the whole of italy was out there tonight cheering on Federica and it pushed us all to the finish,” Jackson said. 

“To see those kinds of crowds watching that type of amazing racing is what it’s all about.

“It helps when there's two of us in a race like that but Federica was in a class of her own tonight.

“I'm so proud of what Becky and I achieved tonight. For me it’s a place better than Beijing and I'm really happy with that.”

Adlington added: “I'm so happy with that swim and world championship medal. I was bitterly disappointed with my heat swim. I didn't feel good this morning, I've struggled to find my rhythm in this meet but it was much better tonight and I'm delighted to have a world championship medal.

“This race was always going to make history and to do a best time and be a part of it is amazing.

“There's more expectation and pressure on me so to come off the back of the Olympics and get a world medal means everything.”

The British Gas women’s 4x100m Freestyle relay team, who broke the British record in this morning’s heats, went into the final with confidence.

Fran Halsall started the race for the Brits and as she finished her leg the team were in third place and Caitlin McClatchey took over and as she finished her leg the German team that were leading the race were turning under world record pace.

The third leg was taken by Katherine Wyld who also had the leaders of the race turning within the world record. Amy Smith finished the race for the British Gas team and they posted a new British record time of 3:36.99.

The gold went to the Netherlands in a new world record time of 3:31.72. Germany took the silver in 3:31.83 and bronze was won by Australia in 3:33.01.

The men’s 4x100m Freestyle relay saw the British Gas team lower the British record in the heats and were ready for more success in the final.

The final saw the Brits up against tough competition from the French, Russian and American teams. The British Gas team, which consists of Adam Brown, Simon Burnett, Liam Tancock and Ross Davenport, performed well through the final and after the second leg they were in fifth place.

The team finished in seventh place overall with a time of 3:12.09.

The gold medal was fought out between France and the USA and after a strong final 50m the American team took it in 3:09.21.

Russia took silver in 3:09.52 and the bronze medal went to the France in 3:09.89.

The men’s 400m Freestyle saw David Davies battle against Olympic 1500m Freestyle champion Oussama Mellouli and 200m European record holder Paul Biedermann for success in this evening’s final.

In a race that saw Ian Thorpe’s seven year old world record broken, the Olympic silver medallist Davies struggled with the pace and although he got off to a good start he was in eighth place at the 100m mark.

The British distance specialist increased his speed through the next 50m and moved to seventh place but found the final 100m too much and finished in eighth place in a time of 3:47.02.

“I've moved my 400 free on so much this year as I've improved my speed in the pool and my aim for this event was to make the final so it’s a box ticked,” Davies said.

“The time should have been quicker but my week is all about what I can achieve over 1500m.

“I was in the 400m in Manchester when Ian Thorpe set the record and to be in there tonight when it went was amazing. Suit or not, what he did and the work he put in deserves recognition for a great swim.”

The gold went to Germany’s Paul Biedermann in a new world record time of 3:40.07, Mellouli (Tunisia) won the silver in a time of 3:41.11 and bronze was won by Lin Zhang (China) in 3:41.35.

The women’s 200m Individual Medley saw the world record lowered and British Gas swimmer Hannah Miley qualify third fastest for the final.

Miley started her race well but fell through the pack as she turned for the Backstroke leg she moved up to fourth.

The Olympic finalist showed her strength in the breaststroke leg as she moved up to third place and then fought through the final 50m and touched in a new British record time of 2:09.46.

“It was amazing to be in this event,” Miley said. “I'm really happy to set another record tonight, to go faster than the heat and make the final.

“I felt a bit of pressure going in but it gave me something extra and I'm looking forward to tomorrow.”

Ariana Kukors (USA) lowered the world record that Stephanie Rice (Australia) set in Beijing to 2:07.03.

The men’s 100m Breaststroke saw James Gibson finish in 14th place overall in a race that saw him swim close to his new personal best time that he set in this morning’s heats.

He performed well but the semi-final he was in saw a new Championship record set and he struggled to keep up with the pace.

He touched home in a time of 59.91 just half a second off his personal best.

Ellen Gandy took part in the second semi-final of the women’s 100m Butterfly and she was up against tough competition from new Championship record holder Christine Magnuson for a final place.

Gandy had a slow start and Switzerland’s Sarah Sjostrom and Jessicah Schipper (Australia) turned just outside of world record pace at the 50m and the British Gas swimmer found the speed too much and finished in eighth place in her race.

The Olympian finished in 16th place overall with a time of 58.25. Sjostrom set a new world record after finishing in a time of 56.44.

“I'm a little bit disappointed but I'm still finding my feet at this level,” Gandy said. “This event for me is just about getting into the meet but I should have gone faster than this morning.

“A personal best would have given me a spot in the final but it didn't happen. I'm very focused on my 200m Butterfly event and I'm excited about the rest of the week.”