North Shore swimmer Glenn Snyders was the first under the Olympic Games qualifying time on the opening morning of heats at the New Zealand swimming championships in Waitakere today.

Snyders clocked 1:00.56 to top the heats in the 100m breaststroke and was 2/10ths of second inside the qualifying mark for London.

The 24-year-old had already bettered the mark and is assured a place at the Olympics. He was pleased with the morning swim but plans to go faster again in tonight's final at the West Wave Aquatic Centre in Henderson.

He was two seconds ahead of Ashton Baumann (North Shore) and Luke Westgaard (Roskill Magic), although the Olympic aspirations of US-based Nick Ferrif were dented when he was disqualified from the heats. He will need to rely on the 200m breaststroke as his last opportunity.


Impressive Age-group swimmer Sophia Batchelor headed qualifiers for the 100m butterfly, the event in which she holds the national record. The Christchurch swimmer clocked 1:01.46 in the heats this morning, with the fastest four swimmers within half a second as they chase the qualifying time of 58.70 tonight.

Tauranga's Nathan Capp, a member of Swimming New Zealand's high performance centre, was fastest in the 400m individual medley in 4:27.72 ahead of North Shore's Roy Pearce (4:31.97) and Howick Pakuranga's Carsten Corazza (4:32.32).

Talented Matamata swimmer Matthew Stanley impressed with a strong performance in the 400m freestyle heats. Stanley, also a member of the high performance squad, clocked 3:53.55 in a good swim, just over three seconds outside the qualifying mark and more than five seconds clear of the next fastest.

Southland's Natalie Wiegersma set herself up for a qualifying crack tonight with a solid effort in the heats of the 400m individual medley, dominating the heats this morning.

In non-Olympic events, Danielle Koni was fastest in the 50m backstroke ahead of North Shore clubmate Melissa Ingram while Australian-based Paul Benson led a Roskill Magic trifecta ahead of Nielsen Varoy and Corney Swanepoel in heats of the 50m butterfly.