The annual 200m Club Championships had been moved to May for 2014, and in a further change to the format the event was held on a Sunday. Swimmers had the opportunity to swim 200m of freestyle, backstroke, breaststroke, butterfly and IM. They scored points based on their position in their age group in the freestyle, IM and their best form stroke (backstroke, breaststroke or butterfly).
In the U10 Girls age group the event threw up a variety of winners. Hannah Barker claimed the first win, taking the IM by 12 seconds, before Ginny Harris did a 56 second PB on the backstroke to claim gold. In the breaststroke Freya Dibley took the win, before claiming a second gold in the 200m freestyle. Finally, Hannah claimed her second gold of the day with a gutsy 200m butterfly performance. Many of the U10s were racing 200s for the first time, but there were some big PBs for Ginny, Jenna Calladine, Ruby Jelfs and Becky Way in the 200m freestyle.
In the corresponding boys age group Luka Wilson was the sole swimmer, but he didn't let this faze him as he set new times in the 200m freestyle, backstroke and breaststroke.
The U12 girls was dominated by Alice Richardson, who won all five races, breaking the Championship Record in each one in the process. Behind her there was some great swimming and huge PBs as Helena Martin dropped 18 seconds to claim bronze in the 200m IM, whilst Maddie Hoddinott achieved a 37 second PB in the same event. In the backstroke, Helena was 30 seconds faster than her PB to again claim bronze, with Katy Andrews dropping 43 seconds to take 5th. In the breaststroke just 0.13 seconds separated Jasmine Chauhan in 3rd and Jemima Bisseker in 4th, whilst the 200m freestyle saw Abigail Way storm to silver with a 27 second PB. Georgie Murphy achieved a 41 second PB to boost herself up to 7th in the freestyle. Finally, in the 200m butterfly Joella McDonogh dropped over a minute to grab the bronze medal.
In the U12 Boys there was a bit more of a fight going on. Luke Temple took the first event, racing 12 seconds clear of George Williams in the 200m freestyle, who himself did a 31 second PB. In the 200m butterfly the tables were turned, with George setting another huge PB to take the win, only eclipsed by the 52 second PB achieved by Tom Sarrau in 4th. Sam Scott then popped up to take the win in the 200m IM, before Luke and George took over again, winning the backstroke and breaststroke respectively. Harry Bisseker, racing in his first ever meet, set new times in the 200m freestyle and breaststroke.
A busy U14 girls age group kicked off with a win for Claire Burrell in the 200m IM, followed up with the 200m backstroke victory. Libby Trayling then grabbed the breaststroke and butterfly, with Claire taking the freestyle in between. Underneath this two-way fight there was again some great swimming. In the IM there PBs of over 30 seconds for Ella Murphy and Lauren Wimbleton, whilst Naomi Holt wiped off 26 seconds for 5th place. In the back Larissa Dean achieved a 45 second PB, and Anna Gifford dropped her time by 37 seconds. The breaststroke saw Aggie Burns jump up the rankings to 3rd with a 16 second PB, whilst Roop Sandhu took off 26 seconds. In the freestyle Larissa again dropped over 40 seconds, moving her up to 8th, whilst Laura Gifford beat her PB by 42 seconds. Finally, in the fly Larissa took almost a minute off her time to finish 4th, whilst Charlotte Corcoran cleared the event for the first time.
John Telensky kicked off the U14 boys competition with a win in the 200m freestyle, before backing it up with an emphatic 200m butterfly victory. He continued his good form to take the 200m IM and backstroke before Joe Richardson put his foot down on the 200m breaststroke and stole the win. Between them, the boys broke all of the Championships Records in their age group. Behind them, Jet Wang achieved a 31 second PB in the 200m freestyle for 6th place, whilst in the 200m butterfly there was a 49 second PB for Lucas Blake and a 31 second PB for Max Norris. Samrahn Sandhu grabbed a 22 second PB in the 200m IM, before the boys achieved a 92% PB success rate in the 200m backstroke. Finally, in the breaststroke Justin Cohen and Jet both dropped their times by 44 seconds. Michael Ripper, fresh from his Inter Counties exploits representing Hertfordshire, took advantage of a spare lane to time trial his 200m backstroke, taking 8 seconds off his PB with no one to push against.
The 14 & Over girls was dominated by Juliet Merelie and Eleanor Lavender, with Juliet taking the freestyle, breaststroke and IM and Eleanor the backstroke and butterfly. Molly Hannah grabbed PBs in the 200m IM, breaststroke, freestyle and butterfly, Charlotte Morris dropped time in the 200m IM and freestyle, Rebecca Spittal dropped her 200m freestyle time, and Amelia Spittal took 10 seconds off her 200m butterfly.
The 14 & Over boys was a clean sweep for Jonny Powdrell, with Chris Fletcher working hard to grab a bunch of PBs and silver medals. Perrin Lau also took a medal, claiming bronze in the 200m breaststroke.
Overall there was some great swimming at the Championships, we look forward to seeing more of it after the summer!