Magic Waters – National Masters Swimming Championships.
The end of October saw the pinnacle of domestic Masters Swimming Calendar with the National Masters Short Course (25m) Swimming Championships’ held in Sheffield at the ‘Magic Waters’ of the Ponds Forge International Pool. Spread over 3 days, the event covers the full competitive swimming competition programme, with individual & relay events, with an age range starting at 18-24, the senior age group and then proceeding up in 5 year age bands to 90,95,100+.
The event allows for Masters Swimmers who achieve a reasonable qualifying time to race in one of the best competition pools in the world and experience a full blown National level competition similar to what swimmers like Adam Peaty compete in.
This year saw a team of 5 Dolphin swimmers attend the event. Nigel Masters, Jonboy Audis, Sarah Forbes, Jo Blount & Lauren Matthews.
With some impressive racing Swindon Dolphins turned a few heads taking 13 medals in all. 8 Golds, 2 Silvers & 2 Bronze.
Sarah Forbes opened the Dolphin racing finishing 5th in the 100m Back in 1.17.00, a seasons best performances. Sarah followed this up with further season’s best times in the 50m Back, 36.36, finishing 9th and 31.1 in the 50m free finishing 13th.
National Masters Debutants Jo Blount & Lauren Matthews both had a successful few days of competition. With World Masters Qualifier Jo, taking 3 seconds off her 50m free time, to finish 27th in 32.37 and breaking the 1.30 mark on the 100 Brs to take 14th place in 1.29.34.
Lauren, who came straight from the Swindon Dolphin Mount Kelly Performance Squad swim camp opened her Masters Swimming account in style with a Gold, Silver & Bronze medal.
After a heavy week of training she secured Gold in the 200m Fly in 2.25.76, Silver in the 400m Frs in 4.34.25 and Bronze in the 400m IM in 5.13.41. Also narrowing missing a medal in the 200 IM to finish 4th in 2.27.20.
World Masters Competitors, Jonboy Audis & Nigel Masters were in fine form, both delivering a clutch of medals & National Titles for the Dolphin Team, and producing times & performances not achieved since 2012 in some instances.
Nigel secured Gold in the 100m Brs, 1.09.96, 200 Brs, 2.32.73 & 200 IM, 2.21.73. Together with a Bronze in the 100 IM, 1.05.10 and 4th in the 50 Brs, 32.37.
Jonboy took a clean sweep in the Backstroke events winning the 50m, 27.16, 100m, 58.45 and 200m, 2.10.01 events and then showing his all-round skill with gold in the 100 fly, 58.53 and Silver in the 100 IM, 59.57.
In addition to the success of the team in the pool, all concerned also enjoyed a great team & social experience.
So no matter what your goal is; from winning National medals, achieving a certain time or just looking for the thrill of swimming in a very special event and being part of a team, there is something for everybody.