RICHARD Charlesworth was the first Hatfield Swimming Club member to reach a final at the ongoing British Gas Swimming Championships and Olympic trials at the London Aquatics Centre.

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The 2008 Beijing Olympian was eighth in the men’s 400m freestyle final in a time of 3mins 56.85secs on Saturday.

Final winner Robert Renwick and silver medallist David Carry booked their Olympic Games places in Team GB.

To secure a spot at London 2012 swimmers have to finish in the top two places in their event and meet a qualifying time.

Charlesworth’s main event is the 1,500m, the heats of which are on Friday with the final the following day.

Of his 400m display, the Hertfordshire swimmer told the Welwyn Hatfield Times: “I have been working a lot more towards the 1,500m as opposed to the 400m.

“I haven’t really been training for this event [400m], so I’m happy to have made the final, it’s nice to be in this pool [which will be used during the Games].

“It’s nice to have all the officials here for the test event, everything seems to be running smoothly.

“I’m just looking forward to later on this week now.

“I’m going to go home, rest, relax have some of mum’s cooking.

“I have the 1,500m heats on Friday, with the final on Saturday.

“I like to keep targets to myself, but I’m looking for best times basically, as long as I keep improving I’m happy.”

Since the Beijing Olympic Games Charlesworth has had to deal with the banning of performance enhancing streamline swimming suits.

Competitors have been striving to match their previous best times set when wearing the suits.

He added: “Because of the suits, I’m a big guy, there’s been more of an adaption for the bigger guys than the smaller guys.

“I’m happy with how I did today [Saturday], last time round in the 2008 trials I was 3.55secs in this race and in this morning’s heat I swam 3.54secs so I feel as though I’m in good shape for Friday and Saturday.”

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