Former University of Victoria Vikes women’s swimmer Stephanie Horner finished 28th in the 10-kilometre open water race at the FINA World Championships in Budapest, Hungary.
Horner, a three-time Olympian, who made the switch to open water from the pool in 2015, was eager to use the skills she learned from swimming the 10-km races at the U.S. National Championships in California and the UANA Open Water Championships in Cayman Islands.
“I was excited going into the race. I had a good prep before, and learned a lot from my previous races this year. I was excited to come into this race to apply what I had learned.”
The 28-year-old Victoria resident saw her result as another learning opportunity.
“I did the best that I could, those girls are pretty fast out there. For me what’s most important is to work my speed and work my stroke rate. I had a solid first two laps, I need to learn to maintain that and push forward.”
France picked up their second open water gold medal of these championships with a win by Aurelie Muller. Samantha Arevalo of Ecuador captured silver, while Arianna Bridi of Italy and Brazilian Ana Marcela Cunha tied for bronze.
Distance/Open Water Head Coach Mark Perry was pleased with the tactical efforts of Canadian swimmers.
“We spent a lot of time working with these girls in terms of their tactics and strategies. What happened in this race is they got themselves in good positions on the first two laps. As the pace picked we found one of the things missing from their armour is the speed to be able to react to bursts of speed. Once you get dropped by the pack it’s almost impossible to get back to that lead pack. We leave here knowing we’ve improved a lot of our skills, we’ve improved a lot of our tactics. They know they have to work on their speed to add to their endurance.”
The FINA World Championships continues Tuesday with the men’s 10-km, and will feature Canadians Richard Weinberger, also a former Vikes swimmer, and Philippe Guertin. Weinberger has represented Canada at two Olympic Games, including a bronze medal effort in London in 2012.