The start of the half term holidays meant a road trip for 3 of GYSC’s senior swimmers and head coach Richard, as they took part in the Bath Open Gala, held in Bristol. The meet was a level 1 gala, meaning some of the fastest swimmers in the country were there, looking for British QTs, and it was a great experience for our swimmers to take part in.
Tommy Chandler, Ryan Webb and Anna Duffield all made the long journey, with Anna and Tommy competing through the day on the Saturday and Ryan competing in the last session on Saturday and then all day Sunday. Having arrived on Friday evening, Anna had time to get to know the 10 lane 50m pool by swimming in the warm up session for that evening’s events.
The Saturday started bright and early for Tommy, with his 100m breaststroke in the first session of the morning. He made a brilliant start by swimming a pb and taking a bronze medal in the boys age 16 category. After a solid swim in the 200m breaststroke, he then finished the day with another pb in the 50m breaststroke, taking another bronze medal a really impressive achievement.
Anna knew she was short on training hours in the lead up to this gala, and so was approaching it as racing practice and gaining experience of competing alongside different swimmers from the usual Norfolk faces. She was excited to be sharing a warm up lane with Freya Anderson – double European champion and commonwealth medalist with Adam Peaty in the English relay team. She swam with determination in all her events and thoroughly enjoyed the experience.
Ryan started on the Saturday afternoon in a positive way, with a great pb in his 100m free. He continued his form in the 50m free with another pb – impressive coming so soon after the County Champs. He swam well in the rest of his races and gained a lot of experience from competing against such high level opposition and in such an amazing pool.
Thanks go to head coach Richard for being his usual calm and knowledgeable presence on poolside with the swimmers all weekend. It was a great experience for all involved.