Lucy leads the way as year of success for Wisbech Swimming Club draws to a close

Wisbech Swimming Club's Lucy Ryan with the six goild medals she won at the ASA East Region, Open Mas

Wisbech Swimming Club's Lucy Ryan with the six goild medals she won at the ASA East Region, Open Masters & Senior Age Groups Championships in Newmarket in October. - Credit: Archant

Wisbech Swimming Club finished a successful 2015 with a hectic series of internal galas and fine showings in the ASA East Region, Open Masters & Senior Age Groups Championships and Round three of the Arena League.

Back in October, Lucy Ryan travelled to Newmarket for a busy Saturday’s swimming in the 40-45 years age group.

She took gold medals in the 50m, 100m and 200m breaststroke, the 100m and 200m individual medley and 100m freestyle, setting a new Eastern Regions Record in the 200m IM.

The Club Championships, held at the town’s Hudson Leisure Centre over six evenings in November and December, also generated impressive performances.

In these important internal competitions, swimmers race within their age groups, generating times that inform subsequent team selections. There’s also the possibility of gaining entry times for the County Championships.

This year’s Club Championships’ entry created 583 swims (up 43% on 2014), 90% of which, 525 swims, produced new personal best times. Head coach Greg Marsters says: “In more than two decades of being involved in swimming, I can’t remember such a high percentage of PBs. The club’s development is clearly evident in these figures, which bode very well for the future.”

The Club Championships were barely over when Wisbech visited Dereham for Round three of the Arena League on December 12.

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Competing in Division two, the town took a creditable second on 187 points, trailing Dereham on 225 and ahead of joint third place teams UEA Norwich ‘C’ and Beccles, on 172.

The boys’ 9-11 freestyle and medley relay team of Ben Eden, Ben Knowles, Connor Loughlin and Sam Smith won both their events, as did the 15/U team of Charlie Bourne, Ben Knowles, Carl Purvey and Jacob Rhodes.

Individual double victories went to Jacob Rhodes 15/U 100m butterfly and freestyle (PB) and Sam Smith 10-11 50m backstroke and butterfly.

Finally, on Sunday December 13, the Club’s annual awards were presented.

Girls’ captain Alice Dennis and boys’ captain Jacob Rhodes were first up, followed by Joseph Whittaker as the swimmer who scored the most points in the season’s Junior Fenland League, Leona Ryan for most points scored for the Club by a female in the County Championship and Sam Smith for the male equivalent, Bryony Pack as the most improved swimmer from the 13/Over age group, Elouise Youngs for the year’s most dedicated swimmer, Louisa Rowell for the most improved swimmer from the 12/U age group, Phoebe Gallagher as the most dedicated young volunteer and Graham Russell as the adult equivalent.

The Club continues to train hard for the 2016 County Championships, beginning early in January and continuing through into February.