03 Mar 2024

Author: Matt Boyd-Wallis

Counties Racers 2024

It’s all over! Last weekend saw the final weekend of the Hampshire Championships 2024 take place at Portsmouth, after the first 2 weekends being held in Winchester. This year seemed to be an exceptionally long championships and I want to say a very big thank you to everyone who took part. Starting with the swimmers, for all their hard work and commitment. Parents for supporting the swimmers in all the ways you do, volunteers for helping on poolside either as Team Managers, Officials or Marshals and finally the coaches for all their hard work in preparing and getting our swimmers believing in themselves. Honestly without all this help we wouldn’t be able to do all the things we do, and the swimmers wouldn’t achieve the results that they do.

This was a very different Championships from last year, with a lot of our senior swimmers stepping up into the Open age groups, where competitors range from 16 upwards. Meaning that the competition becomes stronger, swimmers more varied from 16-year-olds vs 20+ year olds, and the realization of how well we are doing and how far we have come, truly hits home. This year’s championship saw the breadth of Eastleigh swimmers taking part seriously increase, with swimmers in almost every single event, apart from the Boys and Girls 800m Freestyle. We also saw a lot more swimmers taking part for the first time from across the squads, as well as younger swimmers qualifying for this year’s Championships.

In total we had 273 swims over the 3 weekends, 25 finals, 90 PBs and 6 medals (3 Silvers and 3 Bronze).

Adam Sadler with his amazing warm up routines behind the blocks, got a Silver in the 50m Back. Evie Sherriff Lee narrowly missed out on a gold and got a Silver, in the 50m FC, as well as a Bronze in the 50m Backstroke final.

Alana Maddock who had a total of 21 swims over the course of the champs, with the last weekend being her busiest, with 12 races alone. Alana almost hit every event herself and her hard work was rewarded with a Silver Medal in the 1500m Freestyle.

Lilly Shaw got a Bronze medal in the 200m Breaststroke, as well as Ollie Rutherford getting a Bronze medal in the 200m Butterfly.

Honestly these are just a few of the swimmers I could mention, and I know I could write pages about everyone who took part. But what really pleased me was the 90 PBs that we achieved over the competition. These PBs came from all age groups, in a broad range of events, showing as mentioned, our depth of swimmers' abilities is increasing.

Moving forward I would really like to see us now focus on the Bracknell and Winchester Open Meets, to keep trying to develop our four-stroke mastery and approach, so that it makes us all more prepared for the future. You are all amazing and I want to say a massive thank you to you all for all you hard work and support that you give the Club and all the coaches.

Well done guys and keep it going.


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