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Callus snatches record from Sullivan

26 November 2009

Ashley Callus has seized ownership of the title of Australia's fastest swimmer by breaking Eamon Sullivan's 50m freestyle record at the AIS International in Canberra.

The triple Olympian's time of 21.24 seconds on Thursday sliced 0.04 of a second off Sullivan's mark.

Callus, 30, retired after the 2008 Beijing Olympics before being enticed back in the pool as the real estate sector slumped late last year on the back of the global financial crisis.

Since then, the Sydney Olympic relay gold medallist has produced some of the best form of his career even if Thursday's performance came in one of polyurethane suits that are set to be banned at the end of this year.

The Gold Coast swimmer said his focus was just as much on selling houses as swimming sets these days.

"My next real goal is to sell more real estate, but at this point in time, I'm just taking it week by week," he said.

"My main swimming goal is to be competitive come March (trials for next year's Commonwealth Games in Delhi) and then see how we go from there."

Callus, who failed to qualify for this year's Rome world championships, wished he had been able to produce Thursday's form at this year's trials when he was edged out by Matthew Abood and Sullivan.

"I know that I'm in pretty good form, but I didn't have any idea that I would go that fast that this morning," he said.

"I'm happy with it, but I just wish I was a bit fitter at trials (in March this year) because I could have raced these guys then at worlds and given it a really good nudge."

Callus's effort in a Jaked suit knocked Sullivan's name from the swimming record books since the Beijing Olympics.

Sullivan, who missed this year's world championships because of illness, left last year's Olympics as the world record holder in both the 50m and 100m freestyle.

Following Callus's swim, the triple Olympic medallist now owns only the 100m freestyle Commonwealth record.

The AIS International continues on Thursday night.

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