On 14th & 15th March the first of the two main weekends of the Hertfordshire ASA County Championships took place at The Venue, Borehamwood.
The event kicked off with the Girls 100m freestyle, and Alice R got the team off to a great start with a huge PB, dipping under 1.10 for the first time and claiming 6th place in her age group. Claire then dropped down to a 1.04 to claim 5th in the 13 year olds, with Phoebe finishing in the same position in the 17 year olds. Juliet and Katialin were our fastest swimmers, both hitting PBs with Katialin gaining a Regional time.
The boys started off with the 50m butterfly. We had a small field in this, but Bradley and George W both did PBs before Angus took our first medal of the weekend with bronze in the 12 year old age group. Michael and John both achieved Regional times, with Michael going under 32 seconds for the first time.
The final event in the first session was the 200m breaststroke for the girls. Izzy C dropped 8 seconds off her PB to take the bronze medal in the 10 year olds ag group, with Emma B, Alice R and Beth all swimming to great PBs. Juliet took bronze in her age group and finished 7th in the overall Championships. Caitlin was hard on her heels with a new PB which earnt her gold in the 15 year old age group, bronze in the U16 Championships and 8th overall, whilst Katialin picked up silver in her age group, 4th in the U16 Championships and 9th overall. All three of these girls achieved Regional times.
The Championships was then postponed as it was discovered that the water temperature had dropped to 24.8 degrees, below the 25 degree minimum for competition. Everyone went home to rest up for a big day on the Sunday...
With the pool back up to temperature the first event on Sunday was the Boys 50m breaststroke. There were PBs for George W, who came 4th in his age group, Luke, who came 6th and Michael, who came 8th. There was also a huge PB for Bradley who took the silver medal in the 11 year old age group and achieved a Regional time. Finally, John and Joe both took Regional times with their swims, finishing 4th and 5th respectively in the 13 year olds age group.
Next came the 100m backstroke for the girls. Alice R was again the first up, and again set the standard with a strong PB. Caitlin followed suit, before Claire and Tania hit the water and took fourth in each of their age groups. There was a fair bit of slipping on the starts - time for parents to start a campaign to get us practice pads! - but some solid times, and Claire snuck under the Regional qualifying standard.
In the 200m IM there was some stiff comeptition as George W and Bradley wound up in lanes next to each other. Both swimmers did PBs, with George claiming bronze in the 10 year od boys. Sam achieved the near impossible by exactly matching his PB before Ed, Luke, Angus and John all grabbed PBs, with Ed storming to a half length win over his heat. Yannik calimed bronze with a strong PB, whilst Michael took 8 seconds off his PB to secure another Regional time.
In the final session there was some strong swimming from our 100m butterfly girls, with Larissa and Caitlin both tight on their PBs. The boys then got in for the 100m breaststsroke, and Yannik and John took silver and bronze respectively in their age groups. John and Joe also achieved the regional time in this event.
The action was ramping up, and the next event was the girls 200m backstroke. Alice R Pb'd, going under 3.00 for the first time, with Aggie dropping under 2.50. Alice D edged a PB, and Eleanor L claimed silver in her age group with a seasons best. However, the star of the event was Claire. After a disappointing 100m with a big slip on the start, Claire didn't let it bother her as she got a great start and led her heat from the off. She took 9 seconds off her PB to record a 2.25.93 which placed her third on paper with the final two heats to go. No one in the heat above Claire could match her pace, and in the final heat just one swimmer managed to go faster, leaving Claire the proud and very excited winner of gold in the 13 year olds age group, silver in the U16 Championships and silver overall in the Championships! Of course, it was also a Regional time, sitting 11 seconds under the required speed.
This gave the boys something to live up to in their last event, the 200m freestyle, and they did not disappoint. There were PBs for Luke, Angus and John, with Yannik and George W taking huge amounts off their times to both take 5th in their age groups. Michael then hit the water, and swam and 8 second PB to go from 6th to 1st in his age group and secure another Regional time. A fitting end to a tough but successful weekend!
We would like to congratulate our swimmers on their achievements this weekend, sometimes in adverse circumstances, and also to extend our thanks to Hertfordshire ASA for keeping a difficult situation under control and keeping everyone informed as to what was happening and how the missed events will be reintegrated.
We are looking forward to a big weekend of racing this weekend, train hard, eat well and make sure you are in peak condition guys!