You are using an older browser version. Please use a supported version for the best MSN experience.

Webby defends open water 10km title

NZ Newswire logoNZ Newswire 15/01/2017

<span style="font-size:13px;">Defending champion Charlotte Webby has retained her national 10km title with a comfortable nine-minute win over Sammy Winward at Lake Taupo.</span> © Phil Walter/Getty Images Defending champion Charlotte Webby has retained her national 10km title with a comfortable nine-minute win over Sammy Winward at Lake Taupo. Taranaki swimmer Charlotte Webby has defended her 10km national open water title with a nine-minute win over Sammy Winward at Lake Taupo.

Webby clocked 2hr 10min 18sec for the win, with Winward a distant second in 2:19.48 and Stefannie Gillespie third with 2:20.34.

The championships are the first step for swimmers looking to qualify for the world championships and World University Games later this year.

The top five now head to the second stage of qualifying at the Australian open water championships in Adelaide later this month.

Webby, 28, was particularly pleased to race in the FINA-approved wetsuits which were introduced for open water at the start of the year, based on water temperature.

"The aim was just to go out there and see how I'd handle a 10km in a wetsuit, try and lead from the front and just keep going really," Webby said.

"I'm feeling pretty good, it chopped up during the swim so it made it a little bit harder but it's fun to swim in a wetsuit."

Gisborne swimmer Matthew Scott had a closer battle in the men's 10km race.

The top three cleared out early, with a sprint finish meaning just seven seconds separated the final placings.

Scott won in 2:00.21 over Troy Balvert (2:00.27) and Sebastien Priscott (2:00.28) .

"It feels pretty good, to be honest," Scott said.

"We've been doing a bit of speed work at training, so I knew I could do the last 200m. I wanted to leave it down to that and leave a bit for Australian open water in a couple of weeks."

image beaconimage beaconimage beacon