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Adlington eases through heat

March 4, 2012 12:14 pm

Double Olympic champion Rebecca Adlington signalled her intent at the Olympic trials on Sunday morning as she led from the front in the heats of the 400 metres freestyle at the Aquatics Centre.

The 23-year-old first burst into the public consciousness when she won the title over eight lengths in Beijing four years ago and she started the process of attempting to defend that crown on Sunday.

The Mansfield-born swimmer was in the final heat and led from start to finish with only Jazmin Carlin, the Commonwealth bronze medallist, going with her. Adlington clearly had a lot left as she touched in four minutes 06.75 seconds ahead of Swansea ITC's Carlin, who clocked 4mins 09.32secs.

Olympic silver medallist Jo Jackson, now recovered from illness and asthma, was in the penultimate heat and clocked the second-fastest time with Eleanor Faulkner third.

While it is hard to imagine Adlington not qualifying, it would seem there are three swimmers vying for the remaining slot with 1.2secs separating Jackson, Faulkner and Carlin.

Former world champion Gemma Spofforth was impressive as she eased through the heats of the 100m backstroke.

The Florida-based swimmer touched in one minute 00.82 seconds with Lizzie Simmonds second 0.62secs behind.

World 50m backstroke champion Liam Tancock eased into the men's equivalent in 54.72.

Robert Bale led the Britons into Sunday night's 200m freestyle semis in 1:48.41.

Commonwealth bronze medallist Kate Haywood, who moved to Australia last year, led the 100m breaststroke heats in 1:08.83.

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