Duel in the Pool – 2022

Meadowside Leisure Centre – 11th June 2022

Following the successful running of the event since 2015 BASC last night ran the 7th version of the Duel in the Pool. This event is open to all swimmers and is used as a club night to get swimmers into competitive swimming while having lots of fun with team mates. The club is split into two teams and attempt to field two evenly matched teams.

The challengers of the Bluerays entered first to the cheers from parents and grandparents, and the booming sound of from Rocky under the leadership of captains Sophie Fowkes and Issy Reid, plus junior captain Rachel Greener who had missed the chance, alongside Jasper Saunders, to captain due to the pandemic.

Defending champions Bluefins then entered to the sound of the ‘YMCA” by Team captains George Preston, Jasper and Edward Frost.

Captains this year had a greater role choosing which of the two head coaches they wished to have with them on the night, plus taking it in turns to select from the 20 ‘top pick’ swimmers into teams. Head Coach duo Simon Ward and Ian Gates led Bluerays and Bluefins respectively.

In total over 100 swimmers took part and for many of the very little ones this was their first swim in a gala. The two banners made by the junior captains (and parental help no doubt) hung up in the two team bases to give a real ‘two tribes’ feel to the event

The music that was played throughout the night added to the atmosphere and the kids shouted for all 56 races last night – plus a lot of dancing while not swimming to the hits on play

The event was again split into 4 age groups – based on age as at 31/12/22

  • 9 and under
  • 10 and 11
  • 12 to 14
  • 15 and above

All strokes were covered during the 56 race programme  – plus each Senior Captain chose a race to play the ‘Joker’ in order to earn double points – each team had 3 lanes for each event with the 3 lanes added together to get a team total to decide the result.

This year there was also a Captains Race  – where all 6 swimmers chose a mystery stroke which led to Rachael winning with a county time in Fly, followed by Issy on back and George coming third also on Back.

The gala was incredibly close throughout, with the Bluerays playing a master stroke on their joker – with Sophie Fowkes being joined by Sophie Hotchkiss and Rosie Bolton to take the first 3 places in the 50m Back Kick race to gain maximum double points in race 44

The teams had swimmers from the little pool through to masters with coaches also swimming last night. The pool had a lovely atmosphere last night and the races got under way to a few nerves and lots of smiles.

The noise at the end was the BEST BIT – both teams chanting at each other then diving in as the result was announced – the team spirit and friendship within the club continues to grow and tonight was our noisiest duel so far. All the kids plunged into the pool as the result was announced.

Team Captains led their teams up in turn to collect medals from club representatives and sponsors present at the event.

The Final result was Bluerays 606 v Bluefins 553 – so just half a point a race swing to the reigning champions – but with both teams winning many races and lots of PB times swam in a great atmosphere – Thank you to all who helped make this such a special night for the swimmers both young and old!!!

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