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This year we knew the qualifying times would be hard and that they needed to be swam in an open meet – so we had spent a lot of time at open meets during 2017 to ensure we gave all the best chance to qualify. The times in Staffordshire are a lot harder to achieve than the surrounding counties and in 2018 to qualify saw a faster time required of around 5 seconds for all 50m events.
Therefore special extra credit to all of the 20 children who qualified this year- we are very proud of all of you!!!!
In line with national ASA regulations the age remained at the 31/12/18 – so as always some gained and had a better chance of doing well against peers as they became older in the section compared to a March age date in the past.
Our head coach team of Simon and Ian were ever present and the kids all took to the water in a calm state – pumped I think a couple of them called it – with advice from their coaches ringing in their ears as they headed to the blocks. We also saw Bev Doughty and Martin Brown present as officials during the 4 days of swimming spread over two weekends in February.
All races are HDW and kids get called to blocks and announced to the crowd as each race starts – so credit to all kids for being brave and giving themselves and the club a fortnight to be proud of. Once again this year for all events that go forward to Midland level we saw Age group finals with the top 8 going again at the end of each long day.
Charlie Miller – age 11 – our youngest swimmer overcame nerves to swim 2 huge PB times in 100m and 200m breast – a great first counties for Charlie – a bright future lies ahead!!!
Rachael Greener – age 11 – a first counties with more to follow after the amazing 9 second PB time to make the final in the 100m Fly – the cheers of ‘Go Rebecca’ was brill to hear.
Ella Cooper – age 12- JOINT STAR SWIMMER – two years ago Ella attended to do one event having come off crutches a day before – the progress is fantastic and credit to her, her coaches and her family. This year she was always in the top 8 – taking home an incredible 4 medals and 6 midland times – our 2018 Junior Girls Captain had a county champs to remember
Harrison Jones – age 12 – a great debut at counties for our 2018 Boys Junior Captain – making the 50m final and taking home a new PB time
Ruby Welsford – age 12 – another debutant but had her cousin to calm any nerves – a great PB in her favourite 50m back event
Tom Mitchell – age 13 – the 2017 junior boys captain qualified in 7 events…….he made finals and set PB times over both weekends – his highlight being the midland time set in 200m Breast with Tom taking over 10 seconds off his PB over the heats and final!!!
George Preston – age 13 – his first go at Staffs Counties he swam the 100m and 200m Breast in great times to enjoy his experience – swimming so many events the night before for the team in a league gala was a great endorsement of his commitment to the team cause
Charlotte Breeze – age 13 – the fly has become Charlotte’s best stroke over the last 12 months – she set new PB times in both the 100m and 50m fly events
Sophie Fowkes – age 14 – our 2017 junior girls captain made the 100m fly final with a new PB time – going faster again in the final to come 7th
Matthew Appelbee – age 14 – like George P this was Matthew’s first go at Staffs Counties having moved over from a Derbyshire team – he swam an amazing 50m free time and will surely progress to qualify for more in 2019
George Greener – age 14 – George did 5 events and made 5 finals – some great new PB times and an agonizing 4th place in the 200m fly and 100m Breast finals
George Stevens – age 15 – 7 events for George this year – again he made many finals – coming so close to a medal in the 100m back and 50m fly – and then on his last swim his dreams came true as he took home the bronze medal for 50m back
Jack Ward – age 15 – JOINT STAR SWIMMER – jack qualified for so many events and like Ella and Matt picked the 10 he most wanted to swim. This year Jack has improved so much and a real advert for the great training regime on offer at the club – he made finals in all his events – taking home 3 medals in a meet that he will never forget!!!!
Imeh Tyas – age 15 – the fastest girl sprinter at the club currently made 2 great swims in the 50m breast and 50m free – and came back to swim for the club after her first day at Stafford
Adam Doughty – open age– Adam swam some fantastic times as he once again attended the county championships – his 100m back PB was his stand out swim alongside his Midland time in 50m breast
Matt Gates – Open age – the 2018 Senior Boys Captain led from the front with some amazing PB times from his 10 events – the 200m breast final appearance was his stand out swim but he was our top FINA points earner from the initial 69 events
Finley Brown – open age – a debut at the counties for the fast improving Finley saw him post some great times during his county adventure – his new PB in 100m fly his highlight
Finlay Bell – open age – one of our longest serving swimmers once again attended the counties to set a great time in the 50m free
The Statistics from our best County Championships ever are :-
The kids took part in 69 events and made 30 finals and 3 more top 8 finishes in the 100m IM that did not have a final– 79 PB from the 99 races equated to an amazing 80% and not a single DQ was fantastic – quite simply they did VERY WELL
We saw 8 medals won which matched our record from 2015, we scored a huge 32781 FINA points ( a club record) doubling the value won in 2017. The medals came from Ella Cooper (4), Jack Ward (3) and George Stevens (1).
The kids also made 9 midland times – Ella Cooper taking a huge 6, with Tom Mitchell, George Greener and Adam Doughty making one each
WELL DONE TO ALL THE KIDS AND GOOD LUCK TO THE KIDS WHO NOW GO ON TO THE MIDLAND CHAMPIONSHIPS