Not even a recent back injury could prevent Melbourne marvel Caitlin McClatchey from edging closer to a third consecutive Commonwealth Games appearance.
McClatchey – the Commonwealth 200m freestyle record holder – posted a nomination time in her favoured event at the British Gas Swimming Championships at Glasgow’s Tollcross International Swimming Centre.
The 28-year-old Edinburgh University student missed out on the time in the same pool last week at the Scottish National Swimming Championships.
But the double freestyle gold medallist from Melbourne, in the 200m and over 400m, showed her metal as she finished fourth, 0.07 inside the 200m time for Team Scotland consideration.
In Melbourne, McClatchey was part of a sensational Scottish swimming haul of 12 medals, including six golds. That followed her first ever Olympic Games in Athens 2004 and McClatchey has since raced at the Beijing and London Olympics, with the Delhi 2010 Commonwealth Games sandwiched inbetween, not forgetting a brace of bronze medals at the 2005 and 2009 World Championships.
McClatchey said: “I’m so fortunate in my competitive swimming career to have a home Olympics and home Commonwealth Games within a few years of each other. I’m in the latter stages of my career and to have felt the crowd support in London, I am so determined to experience that again in Scotland.
“Competing at a Commonwealth Games is very different from the Olympics. You are racing against people you are normally on teams with. It’s very different, but I really enjoy it; I love being part of that team environment and really want to get there again.
“I didn’t swim well in Delhi so I don’t count that in my mind, but Melbourne was such an incredible experience with the swimmers doing so well and lots of other sports doing well too. It was an amazing Games to be part of and to represent Scotland.
“When I’m having a bad day I think about what I have achieved before and how I’d love to be able to do it again, especially at a home Games. It is still one of my proudest achievements.”
McClatchey was one of several Scots gunning for glory at the British Championships in Tollcross over the last five days, with the competition completing tonight (Tuesday 15 April).
Scottish swimmers dominated breaststroke events, with Michael Jamieson crowned 200m breaststroke British champion and University of Stirling student Ross Murdoch winning the 100m breaststroke title. Jamieson took bronze in that event, whilst Murdoch also took silver over 50m breaststroke.
And there were silver medals for fellow Stirling students Lewis Smith (400m IM) and Sian Harkin (50m freestyle) as well as Edinburgh student Corrie Scott (100m breaststroke). Scott also added a British bronze to her Scottish 50m breaststroke title and there was a personal best and a bronze for Stirling student Cameron Brodie in the 200m butterfly.
A number of other Scottish swimmers finished outside the medals, but posted times for consideration, including Craig Benson (100m breaststroke); Rory Lamont (50m backstroke); Andrew McGovern (50m backstroke) and Hannah Miley (200m breaststroke).
They join those who posted times at the Scottish Championships with the full team to be announced tomorrow (Wednesday 16 April).
You can follow Caitlin on Twitter @CaitMcClatchey
Photo credit: Steve Lindridge