Ariarne Titmus lit up the third night of the Australian Olympic Trials by snatching the Women’s 200m Freestyle World Record from teammate Mollie O’Callaghan. Titmus clocked 1:52.23 in the final, more than half a second under O’Callaghan’s Fukuoka 2023 time of 1:52.85, and now becomes the first Australian woman since Shane Gould in 1972 to concurrently hold the 200m & 400m Freestyle world records.

Image Source: Ariarne Titmus celebrates with Mollie O'Callaghan after the two Queenslanders raced in the Women's 200m Freestyle. Titmus set a new World Record time of 1:52.23 at the Australian Swimming Trials in Brisbane (Chris Hyde/Getty Images)

Former world record holder O’Callaghan had a front row seat to Titmus’s record-breaking swim as the two swimmers went head-to-head in the middle of the pool in Wednesday night’s final. On all three turns there was nothing between the two athletes – O’Callaghan by 0.05 at 50m, Titmus by 0.20 at 100m, and Titmus by 0.16 on the final turn.

Twenty-three year old Titmus then held off her younger rival over the final lap at the Brisbane Aquatic Centre to power home in 28.28 to claim the World Record. Remarkably O’Callaghan touched just 0.25 seconds behind in 1:52.48, and like Laure Manaudou and Annika Lurz at Melbourne 2007, and Federica Pellegrini and Sara Isakovic at the Beijing Olympics in 2008, both swimmers touched the wall in the 200m Freestyle final under World Record time.

Speaking after the race Titmus said the record was a credit to the strength of swimmers in the final.

"This field was so hotly contested, for even Mollie and I, we really had to put our best foot forward,” said Titmus.

"The field that we have is why we are swimming so fast. We push each other every day."

Image Source: Ariarne Titmus off the blocks en route to her 200m freestyle World Record swim (Chris Hyde/Getty Images)

In a remarkably fast race, all eight swimmers went faster than the eighth-placed time at Fukuoka 2023, with five of the top six finishers also part of Dean Boxall’s program at Brisbane’s St Peters Western club.

After the final Titmus paid credit to her longtime coach was watching from high in the stands.

"To have five girls under Dean in that final is incredible and it's a credit to him," said Titmus.

"When you've got someone like that in your corner, you'd beat everyone. He has the most passion and the most pride to be a part of this swim team.”

"I've been with Dean since I was 15, I have basically grown up alongside him. He's more than just my coach; he's my best friend.”