Medi Harris and Matt Richards will fly the flag for Wales as part of British Swimming’s 35-strong team for the European Short Course Swimming Championships in Bucharest, Romania next month (5th-10th December).
The majority of the team for Bucharest were part of the group that earned eight medals at the 2023 World Championships in Fukuoka back in July, with almost all of the remainder having competed at August’s European Under-23 Championships in Dublin.
Harris took home a haul of four medals at the European Long Course Championships in Rome last season, and will hoping to add to her collection next month. Richards will be looking to add to the maiden world title he secured over the summer in what will be his first appearance at a European Short Course Championships, while all other medallists from Fukuoka – Joe Litchfield, Ben Proud, Anna Hopkin, Freya Anderson, Lucy Hope, Lauren Cox and Jacob Whittle all also set to feature.
The last major international short course outing for Great Britain’s athletes came at the 2022 World Short Course Championships, with the athletes there securing four medals out in Melbourne – while the most recent European Short Course Championships to have British involvement was on home soil in 2019, as the team competing in Glasgow won 11 medals.
Athletes were selected based on their performances at international swim meets between 1st May 2023 and 30th August 2023, with a number of those competing eyeing valuable competition time as they build towards the push for Paris in 2024.
Giving his thoughts on the competition, British Swimming’s Head Coach Bill Furniss spoke of the value the experience will bring to the athletes involved once the action in the Romanian capital kicks off.
“The European Short Course Championships are a great opportunity for us to assess where the athletes are at come the end of the first training block of Olympic year”, said Furniss.
“The short-course aspect of the competition will allow us to collect valuable insight into our athletes’ performances and help them focus on developing their starts, turns, and finishing skills. The unique relay opportunities presented to us will also be crucial as we look to build on our ability in this area.
“It will also be a great opportunity to continue building team morale as we build towards the Olympic Games, with the team list combining our more experienced swimmers with some new faces to the senior team.”