A six-year-old Singapore age-group record fell on Day One of the World Junior Swimming Championships, giving the 22-strong local contingent reason to cheer at the OCBC Aquatic Centre.
While a semi-final or final appearance would be a tall order for the locals at the event, which features some of the best young swimmers in the world, Darren Lim, Darren Chua, Dylan Koo and Francis Fong made it a day to remember as they shattered the boys' 4x100m freestyle mark. They clocked 3min 28.56sec, besting the previous mark of 3:30.08 set in July 2009.
The feat was particularly impressive as the previous record was set in the era of the now-banned rubber suits.
They finished 13th overall and missed out on a place in the final. The top eight teams made the final, which was won by Australia in 3:17.39.
Dylan, who is entered in all three butterfly races, said: "The record wasn't on our minds, although we were hoping to make the final because we saw some of the countries had sat out the race.
"But it was nice to break the record. My split time was also good, and it gives me confidence going into my other races."
Darren and Francis also swam in the 400m free and 100m backstroke heats.
Team-mates Christie Chue and Kathlyn Laiu (50m breaststroke), Quah Jing Wen and Tan Jing-E (400m individual medley), Malcolm Low (100m back), Samuel Khoo and Chua Wei Feng (100m breast) as well as Hannah Quek and Jing-E (100m back) were also in action.
They did not make the semi-finals or final. The top 16 swimmers qualify for the semi-finals while the top eight from the heats for the 400m events make the final.
Chua Siang Yee