Last Chance…Next Stop Counties

Event: Swindon Dolphin Last Chance Level 3 Open Meet Venue: Link Centre, Swindon Date: 28th and 29th January 2012

It was mission accomplished for Swindon Dolphin at the Link Centre last weekend. The principle aim was to secure or improve entry times for the Wiltshire County Championships and the numbers tell their own story with 33 new county qualifying times and a further 189 improved entry times.

Stand out swimmers of the weekend were the 14 year olds Danielle Lewis and Andrew Cox.  From a total of nine swims, Lewis accumulated four new county qualifying times and improved her entry time in a further three events.  Cox went one step further, again notching four new county times but improving his times in four other events.

Danielle Lewis ~ four new county qualifying times


Mya Bell, Bethani-Ellen Crouch, Lucie Wells, Calum Marriott, Louise Gardo, and Eliza Garrett each met the qualifying standard in two new events.  Annie Ward went one better with three new events, whilst Aaron Knight, Abbie Hawkins, Alice Lockey, Ella Wardale, Emily Dixon, James Watson and Joshua Smith improved their times and met the county standard in every one of their swims during the weekend. Millie Jeans nearly joined the 100% club but fell just two hundredths of a second short of achieving a clean sweep of PBs in each of her 8 events.

In a weekend which saw some very impressive swims, the outstanding performance came from Georgia Miller in the girls’ 100m freestyle, where she took almost 10% off her previous personal best time; a very significant achievement for a 15 year old at an age where PBs tend to get smaller and harder to find.  Miller is now closing in on the time required for regional qualification and will be hoping for another improvement at the county championships.

Those that did achieve the time required for qualification or consideration for the regional championships in new events were Liam Jeffries, Adam Coleman, Noah Kirby, Abbie Hawkins, Emily Dixon, Joshua Smith and Louise Gardo. There was agony though for Louise‘s sister, the promising Denice Gardo, who after nearly six minutes of swimming fell one hundredth of a second short of her 400m freestyle regional time.

Swindon Dolphin now go into the Wiltshire County Championships in a stronger position than prior to this meet, and with the added bonus of a significant number of new 2012 qualification times. Even more pleasing, on a weekend when most of the High Performance squad were competing at the Zonal meet in Millfield, is the continuing emergence of swimmers who have the potential to emulate the club’s top swimmers.

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