Irish Swimming sensation Grainne Murphy has written herself into the record books again today by winning a Bronze medal in the women’s 800m Freestyle at the European short course Swimming Championships in Eindhoven. Murphy, in her first major competition since winning a silver medal in the European long course Championships during the summer, set a new Irish Senior Record time of 8:19.45.
The previous record of 8:35.24 was also held by Murphy, set at these same championships in 2009.
The 800m freestyle event at these championships is set up as a heat declared winner, with no final taking place. Murphy had swum in the morning heat and finished her race in 2nd place behind Federica Pellegrini of Italy who finished in 8:15.20 so both had to watch anxiously from the side of the pool as the evening heat unfolded.
It was Boglarka Kapas of Hungary who came out on top in that race, with a finishing time of 8:18.56 putting her ahead of Ireland’s Murphy and into the silver medal position. However no other swimmer was able to beat Murphy’s time so she claimed the bronze medal.
As the only Irish competitor racing today, Murphy also swam in the heats of the 100m Individual Medley. She qualified for the semi-final, finishing in a time of 1:02.18 breaking another long standing Irish Senior Record. The previous mark was set by Michelle Smith in 1995 (1:02.70). At the time of distribution of this press release, Grainne Murphy’s has not yet swum the 100m IM semi-final.
Swim Ireland CEO Sarah Keane commented that “the success achieved is testament to the dedication and application of Grainne and her Coach Ronald Claes at the Swim Ireland High Performance Centre in Limerick and highlights the impact that sporting success can have on the country and the need for continued funding through the Irish Sports Council for high performance sport in Ireland???.