"When I go out and race, I'm not trying to beat opponents, I'm
To celebrate our final Point Score event of the year the West Coast Swimming Club awarded five individuals with Swimmer of the Month awards for November and December. Congratulations to Lauren Nicholls and Kellie Dennis who have both represented our club at recent Open Carnivals and demonstrated their dedication to training, improvements in their personal performances and great support of their team mates. Congratulations also to Henry Nelligan, Kilani Coleman - Smith and Stuart Mesecke. They are courageous and focused swimmers at point score and open carnivals and are prepared to put in the hard work necessary to develop competitive times over 50 and 100m distances. Their personal bests times continue to drop and it will be a rewarding moment to see if any or all of these boys will make the final cut to be able to represent the Lower Eyre Peninsula for SAPSASA in March next year.
With less than 4 weeks to go, the heat is now on with swimmers launching into final preparations for the 2013 South Australian Country Championships. It is vital that swimmers maintain their commitment to training, attention to rest and recovery between training and careful nutrition to enable their performance on the day to reflect the investment of time and energy they have made. Swimming supports the development of personal belief in your own abilities, confidence to perform under pressure, self discipline and commitment to achieving a goal. All of our young athletes appreciate the opportunity to learn these life long lessons with the support of coaching staff, their parents and older competitors.
The program of events had a special focus on allowing swimmers to finalise their qualifying times for the Country Championships in light of the radical changes that were implemented by Swimming SA only a few weeks prior. In some instances qualifying times over 100m dropped by 11 seconds creating a great deal of anxiety and frustration in amongst the club for those families who had originally met the qualifying standards. Many of our swimmers continue to maintain their steady rate of improvement and it is well worth club members reflecting on some of our early point score results to track how significant this has been for some individuals.
Coen George began the season swimming his 50m freestyle in 38.47, but now is close to 3 seconds faster at 35.78 making the 10 fastest freestylers competing at Point Score. Similarly Max Lambert began the season posting a 50m freestyle time of 36.01, however blitzed the pool on Friday to register a 33.53. To top off the noteable performances by our 12 year old boys - Kieran Stephans registered a 36.63 to kick off the season and is now at a 34.25. Another mover in the freestyle has been Cameron Akehurt who is exceptional close to making a 36! Friday night he recorded a time of 37 dead which is 3 seconds faster than he was swimming in June. This improvement has still been achieved despite careful management of a shoulder injury. Cooper Perham has made up plenty of ground over the season thus far with his time of 40.46 a massive 6 seconds faster than in June. He will be looking to join Harrison and Cameron in making a time in under the 40 second mark over the 50m freestyle the next time we race.
Jasmine Clark posted a time of 48.37 to kick off the season but is now an incredible 5 seconds faster in the 50m freestyle (43.53) and could clearly aim for a sub 40 second time prior to the conclusion of summer. Determination to improve is evident from the gutsy swims Victoria Henderson has been pushing out. She swam the 50m freestyle in 43.83 and 50m butterfly in 52.18. Competition in this age group is tight with Maya Lloyd and Taleah Milton making some great advances in time. Both swam the 50m freestyle in 47 seconds (47.62 and 47.78 respectively) Maya followed up her freestyle swim with an excellent breastroke race coming in under the minute mark on 56.27 making her the fastest 10 year old on the night, in this event.
Most of our senior swimmers took the chance to review their 200 Individual Medley time and Luke Andrews set the benchmark at 2.29.31. With careful consideration of a wining race plan Luke could create an upset in this event as well and claim a Country Record which has held firm since 1989 (14 years). He will need to beat a time of 2.25.11 at the Country Championships to take the honours from Blue Lake Y swimmer - Damien Burns.
To finish off the night superfish Charlee Watt showed us just what is possible as she is now able to push out a 50m butterfly at just 7 years of age. She completed her event in a personal best of three seconds since her last swim (1.45.00).
All of the results and improvements from Point Score are available on www.westcoastswimmingclub.com Club members also take note of our holiday training calendar which has been made available via email. Junior swimmers begin their time with our club as a natural progression from development through the Port Lincoln Leisure Centre Swim School or through identification during school swimming programs. Our club is supported by a vibrant and active group of committee members who, like their children love the sport of swimming.
"Susie had no talent whatsoever. She's a little person who couldn't even make a final at a state
With the tide running quickly in the Upper Spencer Gulf, the return swimming trek underneath the old Port Augusta train bridge, vehicle traffic bridge and back along the Port Augusta Warf to the starting point on the pontoon in front of the Port Augusta Yacht Club, was challenging to say the least. In the words of one of the competitors "It was like swimming on a treadmill". The water temperature was pleasant and wind conditions favourable for the annual 1800m Port Augusta Long Swim hosted by the Port Augusta Swimming Club following their Open Carnival on the day prior. Three brave members of the West Coast Swimming Club participated in the event; Brooke Traeger, Sonia and Tommy Ford. Congratulations on a magnificent swim from Brooke, taking out the fastest female prize in 28minutes and 24 seconds finishing second over the line. Tommy Ford (11 years) also showed he has the courage to brave the open ocean swimming events finishing in 35minutes and 27 seconds; a clear 2 minutes in front of his somewhat embarrassed mother and open water veteran, Sonia Ford (37.12). The oldest competitor on the day was 80 year old Port Augusta Swimming Club member Gerald Kirkham who competed in his 55th event - finishing the race in 45minutes and 18 seconds.
Open water swimming takes place in outdoor bodies of water such as open oceans, bays, lakes, rivers or reservoirs. The equipment allowed in a race depends on the race organizers. For example, races may have divisions for wetsuits and/or relays; may require escort boats or kayakers; and may require specifically coloured swim caps. Swimming South Australia has a significant number of sanctioned open water events which are tackled by swimmers of all ages. The Port Lincoln Triathlon Club also holds regular events involving swimming in open water. More information can be found at:
Port Augusta Swimming Carnival was attended by a large contingent of swimmers from both our Port Lincoln and Ceduna branches on Saturday 1st of December. An eventful trip up to Port Augusta was safely negotiated by all our families despite severe thunderstorms which upended trees and flooded numerous Whyalla streets. To say that the swimmers arrived excited to compete was an understatement, considering how incredible the ride up was - they were definitely hyped for some special performances.
It was wonderful to see so many of our younger families taking the time to spend a weekend away swimming and enjoying the achievements of their children. The improvement in race confidence of these younger swimmers is remarkable and their resilience in the face of rule infractions commendable. It is definitely a steep learning curve when the finer details of racing need to be mastered and it can be daunting when a referee announces that you have been disqualified. Listen carefully to your coaches and ask for clarification, talk to club captains and senior swimmers and watch our older swimmers technique carefully to understand what is acceptable for each stroke. There is certainly a lot to learn!
Following a bronze medal for the West Coast in the 14 and under Medley Relay the first individual medal of the day went to superfish Moet McCathie with a silver medal swim in the 50m freestyle event (40.38). Moet went on to win a further two medals - bronze in the 50m backstroke (48.54) narrowly being edged out by team mate Jamie Ford (48.27) who took out the silver, and silver in the 50m butterfly in a fantastic time of 51.90. This was Moet's first open carnival and she did herself proud with an awesome set of achievements.
Next to medal was the ever determined Harrison Adams who took out silver in the boys 50m freestyle (37.44). He added to his tally with another silver in the 50m backstroke (48.26), and a bronze in the 50m breastroke (58.02). His swim of the day was his final butterfly race with the reward being the gold (51.05), showing that this enthusiasm and dedication in attending morning and afternoon swimming training sessions is reaping dividends. Swimming in the same age group with just as much enthusiasm for the sport is Kilani Coleman - Smith. He was justifiably proud of his efforts - taking home his first ever swimming medals. A magnificent 50m breastroke (57.22) secured the silver medal whilst his time of 1.07.22 in the 50m butterfly was worthy of a bronze. Kilani managed a huge program on the day, swimming all 50m scratch, 100m scratch, handicap and team swims to the best of his ability, staying organised and positive for the duration of the meet.
The team loved having its youngest team members on board for the carnival. 8 year olds Lily Nicholls and Sophie Traeger. Lily had some cracker swims, showing enormous potential for the future. It is a credit to her family for supporting her to become such a competent swimmer at such a young age. She recorded a 51.77 for her 50m freestyle, a 58.09 for her 50m backstroke, a 1.04.63 for her 50m breastroke and a 1.08.74 for her 50m butterfly. She is definitely one to watch!
Sophie Traeger drew plenty of support from the team as she progressed through to the final of the 50m BBB (butterfly, backstroke or breastroke) handicap final. Dodging thunderstorms which threatened to halt the carnival, Sophie was as proud as punch to take home the silver medal in this event.
In a repeat of the last weekend's tussle for first place in Roxby Downs, Brooke Traeger and Natasha Hammond ensured they would not be giving up a placing lightly. Brooke very narrowly edged out Natasha in the freestyle by a matter of a 10th of a second. Brooke finished the race winning the gold medal in a time of 31.31 and Natasha with the silver in 31.46. Similarly in the 100m breastroke the team mates were within the slightest touch of one another, Brooke finishing in second place in 1.41.80 and Natasha in third place in 1.41.99. Both competitors showed great team leadership in the organisation of pre warm up stretches and in supporting younger swimmers to marshal correctly.
Congratulations to Lauren Nicholls who produced some great times on the day in the 11 - 12 year old girls age group. She has now broken the 40 second mark for the 50m freestyle to record a new personal best of 39.44. She also recorded a personal improvement in her 50m breastroke finishing in 56.38 seconds. Also swimming in this age group were Tascha Jordison, Yemaya Coleman - Smith, Kelli Dennis, Alleigh Hamnett and Brookyln George and the girls will be facing some tight competition in the lead up to the team being finalised for SAPSASA early next year. They supported one another well and have gained important race experience.
Longer swims were also on offer on the day with Brooklyn George being chuffed with her time over the 200m breastroke (4.08.27). Similarly Emma Hamnett managed a significant personal best in 4.16.23. Tommy Ford looked at ease over the 200m backstroke (3.26.42) enjoying the chance to practice maintaining an even keel when swimming backwards in an outdoor pool.
A hearty congratulation to all of the team who attended the Port Augusta Carnival - many swimmers walked away with individual and team awards together with personal best achievements and a better understanding of competitive swimming rules. A full listing of results can be found at www.westcoastswimmingclub.com
An inspiring 58 individual medals (plus additional team awards) were bought back to Port Lincoln following a action packed Roxby Downs Swimming Carnival held on Saturday 24th of November. 14 swimmers made the seven hour drive to the state's biggest mining town to test their metal against competitors from Roxby Downs, Port Augusta, Whyalla and a number of Adelaide clubs. The meet was a great confidence booster as the team begins the downhill run into preparations for the Country Championships in January. Excitement abounded with the chance of spending a weekend away with team mates and their families.
Kellie Dennis received a gold medal for all four of her 50m swims in the 11 and under age group together with a personal best in her 50m butterfly ; Freestyle 50m (38.91), Backstroke (49.83), Breastroke (52.90) and Butterfly (43.76). Henry Lambert also dominated his age group coming home with gold medals for all individual swims. His stand out swims for the day were his 50m Butterfly in 31.86 and his 200m freestyle in 2.30.23. There were some very tight competitions amongst Cameron and Harry Izzo with both boys extremely pleased with their medal tally from the day. 8 year old Cameron managed to produce an 11 second personal best in his 50m backstroke to finish in 1.04.24 just three seconds behind his older brother but finished the clear winner in the 25m breastroke to finish in front recording a time of 28.87 seconds. 10 year old Harry's swim of the day was his super 50m freestyle which he completed in 51.31 beating his previous best by 3 seconds to gain a silver medal. It was great to see Christopher Bawden honing his racing skills and being rewarded with some great results in the 11 and under age group. He came home with gold in the 50m butterfly (58.34), 50m freestyle (43.53), 50m backstroke (48.66) and 50m breastroke (53.87) and medaled in the 100m backstroke (1.49) - Bronze.
Tash Hammond, Brooke Traeger, Maddy Izzo and Jade Calverly produced some great results in the 13 year old women's events with Brooke comming up trumps in the 50m butterfly (35.03), 50m freestyle (30.90) and 50m backstroke (38.41) but being just edged out in the breastroke by Natasha Hammond (44.16). Natasha made it a triple in the breastroke with gold medals also in the 100m event (1.42.77) and 200m breastroke event (3.33.17). Great to see Maddy Izzo building her fitness and she is to be congratulated for a personal best in her 50m backstroke (42.44). Swimming in the younger age group Sophie Traeger performed really well against swimmers up to 2 years older and was clearly the fastest 8 year old female at the carnival. She was thrilled to medal in 3 of her 25 metre events; backstroke (gold - 25.05), butterfly (silver - 25.92)and breastroke (silver - 29.03).
Ellie McInerney (S9) produced some great backstroke swims on the day finishing her 50m swim in 1.02.04 and her 100m swim in 2.19.90. It will be very interesting over the coming year watching Ellie work her way towards the 2 minute mark in the 100m event and possibly look at an international ranking over this distance. For information on current international paralympic rankings go to the official website for the International Paraylmpic Committee (IPC) www.paralympic.org Brooklyn George was delightful to watch in the breastroke events with her 100m time a significant improvement on her last swim (1.56.91) and her 200m time a 4.14.40. She almost managed to catch Kellie Dennis over the 50m recording a 53.81 which earnt her the silver medal in this event. Izzy Scott also came home with an individual medal around her neck following a great time in her 50m butterfly (silver - 48.12). She also achieved personal bests in her 50m breastroke (58.36) and freestyle (47.65).
In the men's 12 year old events Max Lambert and Coen George had a great time putting into action all that they have been training for over the past months. Max took home the gold medals in the freestyle (34.03), backstroke (42.39) and breastroke (47.59) with Coen just too hard to beat in the butterfly (42.94). Coen's improvements in this stroke continue with a personal best time of 42.94 seconds being recorded. Since July he has shaved off 3 seconds over this distance and his efforts will be an important strength in all of our team entries to the Country Championships.
Sonia Ford is our publicity officer and would love to hear of noteworthy news items from our swimming community!