Southport swimmer Holly Hibbott was ‘disappointed’ with her efforts at the British Olympic trials but still expects to be on the plane to Tokyo this summer.

Hibbott won the 400m freestyle race at the trials earlier this month but wound up just over a second shy of the consideration time.

The 21-year-old clocked a 4:07.3, two seconds adrift of her personal best from 2018.

But she feels she is approaching top form at the right moment.

“I was a little disappointed with my time, she told Mersey Sport Live. “Although, that’s the fastest I’ve swam in nearly two years, so I’m glad to be back close to my best.

“I’m just now focusing on my next opportunity to try and get under the consideration time.”

Ahead of the trials at the London Aquatics Centre, the swimmers were subject to strict Covid-19 rules.

They could only leave their hotel room for meals and practice.

But Hibbott dismissed any suggestion that these arrangements hampered her performance.

“When you’re at the pool it’s like normal without a crowd,” she said.

“The Olympics is the biggest sporting event for swimming so everyone is very upbeat and excited for racing, even if things have to be done slightly different to normal.”

Hibbott can still qualify if she posts a fast enough time at the European Championships in Budapest, which begin on 10 May.

She won bronze in the 400m freestyle at the 2018 Championships in Glasgow.

“I’m feeling pretty confident,” Hibbott said.

“Obviously the goal was to qualify at trials a couple of weeks ago but for me I have to look at the future and do everything I can to get myself ready for the Europeans.”

Hibbott is looking to join another Merseyside competitor – Upton’s Freya Anderson – in the GB squad.

(Main image courtesy of Mersey Sport Live)

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