2023 NEW SOUTH WALES STATE OPEN CHAMPIONSHIPS
- Friday, March 10th – Sunday, March 12th
- Sydney Olympic Park Aquatic Center (SOPAC)
- LCM (50m)
- Meet Site
- SwimSwam Preview
- Start List
- Results – Meet Mobile: 2023 NSW State Open Championships
While competing on day one of the 2023 New South Wales State Open Championships, multi-Olympic medalist Kaylee McKeown broke the World Record in the women’s 200m backstroke.
McKeown crushed a time of 2:03.14 for gold, beating the field by over 7 seconds. In doing so, McKeown overtook the previous World Record mark of 2:03.35 American Regan Smith put on the books in the semi-final of this event at the 2019 World Championships in Gwangju.
|Smith’s Previous WR||McKeown’s New WR|
Entering this meet, 21-year-old McKeown’s lifetime best rested at the 2:04.28 national record she produced at the 2021 Australian Swimming Trials. That rendered her the world’s 3rd fastest performer in history behind the aforementioned Smith and American Missy Franklin.
What’s more, McKeown’s elder sister, retired Olympian Taylor McKeown, posted on social media that Kaylee was ‘not even rested’ for this eye-popping swim.
McKeown is already the World Record holder in the 100m back as well, owning that mark at the 57.45 she produced in 2021 as well. She is also the reigning Olympic champion in both the 100m and 200m backstroke events.
“The race was actually swum 20 minutes earlier than it was scheduled on the time line – I was so rushed…and talking to Molly I said ”what’s going on…?” McKeown told The Advertiser after tonight’s race. “I actually like sitting in marshalling and kind of gathering my thoughts before my race..but I had no time for that…so I just pulled up my straps and went for it really…but I love racing….it’s what we train for.
“I knew it was going to be a new level heading into the Olympics and I think it’s great seeing Regan Smith doing all her double ups – it’s scary and it’s daunting to me looking when you are looking at a competitor or competitors that fierce – even Molly O’Callaghan in Australia – the backstroke depth is definitely coming back at that top level so it’s exciting.”
Additionally, McKeown told NSW Swimming, “After the Olympics, I found it hard to get up behind the blocks again.
“I found a new love for the sport, and it just goes to show that a happy swimmer is a fast swimmer. I haven’t necessarily changed anything in my program or training-wise. It’s just that I’m happier.”
Last year McKeown became the second woman ever to concurrently hold Olympic, Commonwealth, long-course world, and short-course world titles in the same event – the 200m back. Ariarne Titmus also accomplished the feat in the 400 free at the 2018 Commonwealth Games, 2018 World Championships (short course) 2019 World Championships (long course), and 2021 Tokyo Olympics.