Wigan BEST swimmers where in excellent form over the weekend competing in the Swim England Northwest Winter Short Course Championships in Manchester, with 12 swimmers making finals in 37 events. Coming away with 16 medals. of which 6 were gold 7 silver and 3 bronze.
Racing as a senior for the first time 17-year-old Rachel Hornby had a hectic two days coming away with lifetime bests and 6 medals. Rachel powered her way to victory in the 200 IM and fly breaking the 2:20 barrier in both events finishing in 2:19.82 and 2:18.95 respectively. Silver came in the 100 breaststroke and the longer medley event, with bronze in the 200 breaststroke and 100 fly.
This regional event is swam as a championship event with medals going to junior (16 years and under) and Senior swimmers (17 years and over) which made the Wigan BEST swimmers’ performance more exceptional with many swimmers competing out of age.
Olivia Sheehan was rewarded for her fantastic efforts with 5 medals taking gold in the junior 800 freestyle and silver in the senior section finishing in 9:08.14. Olivia second gold came in the junior 200 fly which also secured her bronze in the senior event. In the 400 IM she fought hard to finish 2nd junior in 5:07.47. Competing a year out of age Sam Grimes and Charlie Collins showed class with Sam being rewarded for his efforts with a fantastic silver in the junior section and bronze in the senior 1500 freestyle taking over 1 minute of his previous best finishing in 16:17.75 an average of 65.18 seconds for each 100m. Charlie matched Sam with his own silver in the junior 100m backstroke finishing in 1:00.89. Sam went on to just miss out on medals with excellent 4th places in the junior 400 IM, 400 freestyle, 200 IM, and the 200m freestyle. With Charlie taking 4th in the 200m Backstroke, 6th 200 IM 7th in the 50 fly.
Swimming in her first Winter Championships 14-year-old Lydia Swindell showed no fear against the older opposition taking a superb gold in the junior girls 100m backstroke winning the event in 1:05.18. Lydia continued her success with solid performances in the 50m and 200m backstroke taking 4th in both. In the 100m freestyle broke the magic 1:00.00 mark finishing 5th in 59.69.
The 100m back proved a strong event for Wigan BEST with 4 of the 8-finalist coming from the club with 13-year-old Isobel Liptrot just missing the medal finishing in 4th Georgia Carroll 7th and Anna Healey 8th. Anna Healey went on to make 3 more finals producing a brilliant 1:13.24 in the 100m breaststroke earning herself a well-deserved silver. The 50m freestyle saw Anna just miss medals taking 4th and a very creditable 7th in the 50m backstroke. While Isobel showed talent against older opposition with a 5th in the 200 and 8th in the 50 backstrokes. 14-year-old Chloe Ridge produced lifetime bests finishing 6th 200 and 400 IM and 8th in the 200 breaststroke Eve Horton and Mat Haynes continued the lifetime best performance from the club with Eve just missing medals in the 200 fly with Mat taking 6th in the 50 freestyle and fly.
Lead Coach of the National Group Chris Suggitt expressed his delight at the club’s performances and the fact that this was a young group of swimmers with much potential for the future. With 11 swimmers now qualified for the National Winter Championships which take place in December in Sheffield this is exciting times for the club.
Full Results Can Be Viewed HERE
Les France – HEAD COACH