Australia surprise themselves as supersuit record beaten

Thu Jul 24, 2014 11:11pm EDT
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GLASGOW (Reuters) - It was a world record that few expected to be broken any time soon.

Even the Australians themselves could not quite believe it, with Melanie Schlanger the only swimmer to recognize the significance of their collective efforts at the Tollcross Swimming Centre at the Glasgow Commonwealth Games.

"World record," she exclaimed as she looked at the screen after world 100 freestyle champion Cate Campbell touched to stop the clock at three minutes, 30.98 seconds, eclipsing the 3:31.72 set by a flying Netherlands team five years earlier.

The record by that Dutch team had been set in the madness that surrounded the 2009 world swimming championships in Rome, when 43 world marks were shattered - many aided by the use of polyurethane bodysuits that have since been outlawed.

"Not only a world record, but a supersuits world record," Cate Campbell told the Sydney Morning Herald after she anchored the team of younger sister Bronte, Schlanger and Emma McKeon to gold.

"This is the stuff that dreams are made of. It's incredible.

"When we saw that world record set in 2009 we thought, 'well that's it for the next 10 years and this is beyond incredible."

Of the 43 records set at the Foro Italico in Rome, 21 still remain on the books.

"A world record in itself is a milestone but a supersuit world record is something that's incredibly special," Campbell added.   Continued...

Australia's Cate Campbell (L), Emma McKeon (2nd L), Melanie Schlanger (2nd R) and Bronte Campbell celebrate after receiving their gold medals for the Women's 4x100m Freestyle at the 2014 Commonwealth Games in Glasgow, Scotland, July 24, 2014.  REUTERS/Suzanne Plunkett