Wisbech swimmers continue strong form

Wisbech Swimming Club’s triple county champion Beth Dennis at the 2018 Youth Regional Championships.

Wisbech Swimming Club’s triple county champion Beth Dennis at the 2018 Youth Regional Championships. - Credit: Archant

Wisbech Swimming Club was out in force for the City of Peterborough Swimming Club Last Chance Regional Qualifier gala over the weekend of April 13-15.

Fast swimming, against competition from as far away as Watford, saw the club take 19 gold, 20 silver and 24 bronze medals.

Top prizes went to Sam Smith (five), George Milton (four), Millie Harris (three), Ridas Rabasauskas (two), Jamie Wilson, Aiste Virzintaite, Esme Gilbert, Harry Smith and Harrison Smith.

Sam Smith also came away with two regional qualifying times and Oliver Smithee with one.

For her part, nine-year old Millie Harris set three new club records.

Wisbech Swimming Club’s Junior Fenland League team visited Whittlesey for round two of the competition on April 21.

Maintaining recent form, the town dominated the event with 27 victories in 45 races.

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Jamie Wilson, Ridas Rabasauskas, Kian Cooper, Oliver Glasscock, Olivia Rowell, Katie Whittaker and Henry Leach took two wins apiece, while Esme Gilbert, Aiste Virzintaite, Zach Peggs, Millie Harris, George Milton, Connor Loughlin, Josh Jones, Zoe Wilson, Ruby Lane, Lily Jones, Katie Leach, Harry Smith and Erin Doherty also won their races.

The team added ten second and six third places, winning round two on 196 points, with March Marlins second and City of Ely third.

Wisbech goes into round three at its Hudson Sports Centre home on June 9 leading the league.

After her exceptional qualifying performance in the county championships earlier in the year, Beth Dennis represented Wisbech Swimming Club at the 2018 Youth Swim England East Region Regional Championships, held in Norwich on May 5 and 6, swimming long course (in a 50m pool). She competed in the 200, 100 and 50m breaststroke events, making all three finals and swimming faster than her short-course personal best times in each.

Short-course (25m pool) times are generally faster since they involve more frequent turns and, therefore, swimmers benefit more often from pushing off the wall.

Dennis finished fourth in the 50 and 100m, events, with times of 35.38 seconds and 1 minute 18.29 seconds, respectively.

Her two minutes 51 seconds 200m time was good enough for fifth. Her coach, Greg Marsters, said: “It was great to see Beth qualifying for all the finals and then swimming faster than she had in the heat each time.

“She also broke all three of her own Wisbech Swimming Club records and I hope she was fast enough to qualify for the National Championships later in the year.”

Wisbech was back in Whittlesey on May 19, fielding ‘A’ and ‘B’ teams in Round 2 of the Anglian League. Wisbech ‘A’ finished in second place on 133 points, behind March Marlins on 143.

Five ‘A’ swimmers, plus the freestyle relay team, won their races, including Beth Dennis (15/U 100m and Open 50m butterfly), Sophie Fenner (13/U 100m freestyle), Carl Purvey (Open 50m freestyle), Alex Gallagher (Open 50m breaststroke) and Henry Leach (13/U 100m breaststroke).

Wisbech ‘B’ finished sixth on 64 points, behind Boston ‘B’ on 86.

The team won two events, the 13/U 100m freestyle going to Joe Whittaker and the 13/U 100m butterfly to Mateusz Smialek.