East Regional Winter Championships 2017
Great Yarmouth Swimming Club had three swimmers who had qualified for the East Region Winter Championships, and over the weekend, they competed in the 50m pool at the UEA Sportspark in Norwich.
The winter regionals are challenging to qualify for as they don’t distinguish between age groups, but instead have one qualification time for each event. For example, men or boys must all have a licensed time for 50m freestyle of 26.29 seconds or faster to be eligible to compete at that event in these championships. Results are also ranked purely in order of time, rather than being split into each age groups and then ranked, which means that you could have 13 year olds racing 21 year olds in the finals. This leads to some fascinating racing, great for spectators and good for swimmers too.
For our Great Yarmouth Swimmers there was tough competition, with clubs from the whole of the East Region participating. The best swimmers from the counties of Norfolk, Suffolk, Cambridgshire, Essex, Bedfordshire and Hertfordshire were all there in force, and the standard of swimming was high.
Grace Leech was able to compete in 5 races: the 50m freestyle, 50m backstroke and 50m butterfly and also the 100m freestyle and 100m breaststroke, and displayed her skill across all four strokes along with her sprint strength. She showed determination and speed and can feel proud of her performance over the weekend. Anna Duffield had qualified for the 200m individual medley for the first time at these championships, along with the 50m butterfly. The 50m butterfly was her stronger race and she pulled an excellent long course pb of 31.34 seconds out of the bag, moving her much higher up the rankings than her seeding had placed her. Tommy Chandler had, like Grace, qualified for an impressive 5 races: 50m breaststroke, 100m breaststroke, 200m breaststroke, 50m backstroke and 200m individual medley. Swimming powerfully he gained new long course pb times in 3 of his races, (100m breaststroke, 200m IM and 50m backstroke) and swam with conviction throughout the championships.
Thanks must go to head coach Liam Harvey for supporting the swimmers on poolside throughout the championships.