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Dolphin Troop their Colours at Millfield

Event: South West Regional Youth Championships Venue: Millfield Date: 1st to 3rd May 2010

The South West Regional Youth Championships took place last weekend at Millfield.  In one of the countries strongest regions, a squad of fifteen Dolphins took their place amongst some of Britain’s top swimmers at the Somerset long course pool.

Each Dolphin swimmer had their own individual reason and motivation for attending the meet.  For some this would be the toughest competition encountered over the season and would be looking to achieve personal best swims and as high a placing as possible.  For others it would be a chance to pit themselves against swimmers they are likely to meet in a few months time at Ponds Forge.  Many were looking to earn the coveted title of national qualifier and some were using the competition purely for race practice and long course experience ahead of their own target meets.

James Clark was looking to add both medley events to his two breaststroke national qualifying times (NQT) achieved two weeks earlier. Narrowly missing the 200m event on the first day, Clark’s determination in his 400m swim on the Monday afternoon saw him clock up a third NQT of the season in a new club record time of 4:52.91.

Samantha Berry also saved her best until last with one NQT, her second of the season, in the 100m butterfly final on Sunday evening, followed by the 200m butterfly in the closing session of the Championships on Monday.

Samantha Berry ~ National Qualifier

For Joe Kerslake, adding the 100m event to his existing 200m backstroke NQT proved elusive, despite a spirited heat swim and reaching the 15/16 years final.  Kerslake also made finals in the 50m and 200m backstroke finishing a creditable fourth in the sprint, just touched out by Liam Herbert in the bronze medal position.  Herbert also took bronze in the 100m final and made the top eight in the 200m freestyle.

As expected, Elizabeth Beckett made all three breaststroke finals, taking silver in her 200m swim and bronze in the other two.  As well as also taking bronze in the 400m individual medley, Beckett added another string to her bow with a solid 200m backstroke swim which earned her another finals place, finishing seventh.

Also medalling for Dolphin was Victoria Jennings in the 800m freestyle with a personal best swim that edges ever closer to a first NQT.  Others making finals in Dolphin colours were Jon Audis (50m backstroke 4th, 100m backstroke 5th, 200m backstroke 5th), Louise Maynard (50m breaststroke 4th, 50m butterfly 6th), Kath Baker (200m breaststroke 5th, 100m breaststroke 6th), Megan Jones (200m backstroke 6th), Matthew Rose (100m freestyle 6th).

The relay events were dominated by the giants of Plymouth Leander and Millfield School although Dolphin were one of the few clubs to break their stranglehold on the medal positions with the quartet of Elizabeth Beckett, Megan Jones, Samantha Berry and Charlotte Pitts taking a bronze medal in the girls 4 x 200 freestyle.

Full results are available on the Competition Page


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