Swimming star Daniel Wiffen has become the first swimmer in Irish history to break a European Swimming Record, achieving this on home soil at the Irish National Winter Championships held at the Sport Ireland National Aquatic Centre in Dublin today.
The 21-year-old distance star swam a time of 7:25.96, two seconds under the previous record set in 2021 by Italy’s Gregorio Paltrinieri (7:27.94). Subject to ratification by the European Governing Body LEN, Wiffen will become the first Irish swimmer to set a European Record. Wiffen’s time is the fourth fastest swim of all time in this event in the short course pool and sees him now only 2.5 seconds outside of the World Record.
A delighted Wiffen commented ‘I’m very happy, it’s obviously a very fast time and number one in the World (this year). I knew that I’d be sub 7.30 and I was aiming for a top ten in the World, I think that puts me fourth, but I said quietly I’d go for a European Record to all my friends in Loughborough, I’m really happy.’
‘The 1500m was my main focus for the meet (last weekend), and I knew that since I was going to Irish I would do the 800m and 400m there because I thought the 800m could be my quickest, my better event and it’s what I qualified in the Olympics for, and it was nice to get a home crowd watching that.’
During the swim, the Loughborough University swimmer also set a new 400m Freestyle Irish Record, clocking 3:41.63, to knock over a second off the previous record of 3:42.42.
In the past two weeks Wiffen has broken the Irish Record in the 800m Freestyle three times. Last weekend, at the Scottish Short Course Championships, he swam a 1500m Irish Record of 14:14.45 placing him 6th in the World, and the fastest man in 2022.
Wiffen returns to the pool on Saturday for the 400m Freestyle Heats while competition continues at the Irish National Winter Championships this evening.