The Swim England East Region Short Course Championships were held this weekend at the Inspire Pool in Luton. The fastest swimmers from Norfolk, Suffolk, Cambridgeshire, Bedfordhsire, Essex and Hertfordshire all gathered together having achieved the tough qualification times required to be able to compete at these championships. Unlike the Summer Regional Championships, the swimmers are not split into age groups and instead all achieve an overall placing for that event, no matter what their age. This means there can be swimmers making the final who are 14 against swimmers who are 24 – it’s all about times!
Three of Great Yarmouth’s senior swimmers had achieved qualifying times for these championships: Ryan Webb, Tommy Chandler and Anna Duffield. Ryan was competing in his first regional championship, having qualified for the 50m freestyle, 50m backstroke and 100m backstroke. After being just outside his recent 50m freestyle pb in his first event, Ryan came back fighting achieving excellent new pb times in both his 50m back (28.85s) and 100m back (1.01.29) which impressively placed him as the 6th17 year old competing in that event.
Anna Duffield had qualified for the 50m butterfly but was unsure of her form having cut back her training over the summer. The recent training sessions with new head coach Richard Every, however, had brought her back into form and given her new confidence and she smashed her previous short course pb of 31.87 with an excellent new time of 30.60. This boosted her up the regional rankings, placing her as 10th16 year old out of the 28 competing. It also gave her the qualification time for next year’s summer regionals.
Tommy Chandler had also missed training recently due to injury, and was not even sure whether with his ankle injury he would be able to compete. After assessing it in warm up, however, he decided to and was rewarded with a great weekend of racing. He had qualified for 5 events: 50m breaststroke, 100m breaststroke, 200m breaststroke, 100m IM and 200m IM. His best races were definitely his 100m breaststroke on the Saturday morning where he took a massive 2 seconds off his previous pb, winning his heat and gaining a new summer regional qualification time (1.10.99) and his 200m breaststroke on the Sunday where he did an even bigger 5 second pb taking his time down to 2.35.36.
The three swimmers really supported each other through the weekend, often staying poolside when their own races were finished just to watch each others’ races. Head Coach Richard Every was poolside with them, and his calm, experienced manner along with technical feedback was undoubtably a factor in their success. Well done to all three swimmers and thanks to Richard for his support.