On Saturday 9th March Winsford Swim Team hosted our very first 800/1500 Free Reverse Open Meet. We had 66 swimmers from 18 clubs visiting us from all over the the North West and Midlands of England looking to achieve some last chance Regional Qualifying Times which take place in April and May. Winsford Swim Team had 23 swimmers racing, 16 boys going in the 800 Free and 7 girls stepping up to the longest event in the pool, the 1500 free. For us we had a mix of swimmers, from those who this was their very first 800 or 1500 free to those swimmers right up to National level standard who have a little bit more experience.
Over the evening Winsford swam outstandingly well, we achieved 19 new PB swims out of the 23 swims, giving us a 83% PB Rate, not only this but we had 4 swimmers pick up new North West Regional Qualifying Times; Lois Inch and Erin Hardy in the 1500 free and Lewis Turner and Henry Oliver in the boys 800 free, we also had a number of swimmers narrowly missing out, but never the less still having some great swims and racing to life time bests.
What was pleasing to see for me was so many swimmers trying these relatively new distance events. I often say it but distance swimming from a young age is very important, the vast majority of swimmers who have made a National level or higher have been distance swimmers when they were younger, they have built the engine from a young age. 18 of our swimmers racing last night were aged 14 or under, it was great to see so many of our younger swimmers racing over the distance free events, especially the girls who stepped up from the 800 to the 1500 free which can be seen as a big jump, but this increase in distance did not phase them.
This was our very first reverse 800/1500 free open meet and with this brings much organisation and preparation from our gala committee and parent volunteers, so thank you to all who helped out in the organisation and running of our meet who again put on a great show for all our guests. Also many thanks to all officials who helped out on the evening who came from all clubs, with a special mention to Karen Kud, Lucie George and Debra Thomson who volunteered to officiate even when their children were not racing.
It was a very successful meet with some exciting and close racing, well done to all swimmers who came to Winsford to race.
Competitors from Winsford were:
Boys 800 Free
Finlay Parkinson PB (10)
Oliver Jolliffe PB, Chris Lowndes PB (11)
Freddie Cushen PB, Will Line PB, Ross Hanley PB, Lewis Turner PB & NWRQT, Adam Wright (12)
Theo Oliver, George Young PB (13)
Oscar Jolliffe, Tom Carss PB (14)
Rory Armitt, Jonny Mullett PB (15)
Alex Moss PB, Henry Oliver PB & NWRQT (17)
Girls 1500 Free
Megan Rickels PB (10)
Lois Inch PB & NWRQT (11)
Erin Hardy PB & NWRQT, Charlotte Mullett PB (12)
Jess Bradley PB, Sophie Grindley PB & NWRQT (13)
Katelyn Murray (14)
PB = Personal Best
NWRQT = North West Regional Qualifying Time
Well Done again to all our swimmers who raced in the reverse 800 & 1500 Free events.
We now look forward to the Wirral Metro Meet where I am sure more of our swimmers will be targeting and achieving NWRQTs.