Almost 300 of the county’s most talented young swimmers aged between 9 and 14 years-old acked into Mansfield’s Water Meadows to battle it out and although they may be young, they lacked nothing in terms of quality.
Mansfield Swimming Club’s Thomas Hurt (15), was celebrating three County Champion titles in the 50m backstroke and 50m & 100m breaststroke in the Multi-Disability S14 category and 14 year-old Rhys Taylor joined him in the medals with a silver in the boys 13/14 years-old 100m breaststroke.
Gracie Clifton (10), competing in her first County Championships, took a well-deserved bronze in the girls nine to 10 years-old 50m backstroke.
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Rhys also reached the final of the 200m freestyle and 200m backstroke placing fourth and sixth respectively.
However, it wasn’t just about the medals as the Mansfield SC swimmers amassed an amazing 71 personal best times from 92 swims, achieving new Midland Regional qualifying times along the way.
For youngsters Paris Amirsaeedi (9), Jack Armsby (9), Evie Vardy (9), Callum Peel (9), Emma Peel (9) Emily Freeman (10), Elli Seagrave (10) and Blaize Smith (10), it was their very first taste of competing at this level and all proved themselves more than capable of performing on the big stage when it mattered.
The black & gold colours of Sherwood Colliery Swimming Club were flying particularly high over the weekend, with the Club celebrating five new Junior County Champion titles, 21 medals, individual event finallists, new Midland Regional qualifiers and over 100 personal best times.
14 year-o ld Amelia Sale led the Sherwood charge, taking four gold medals & Junior County Champion titles in the 13 to 14 year-old50m & 200m freestyle and 50m & 100m butterfly, adding a bronze to her first weekend’s medal tally in the 50m backstroke.
Just behind her was 12year- old Lily Boseley who took three gold medals in the 11 to 12 year-old 50m freestyle, 50m backstroke and 50m butterfly, a silver in the 100m butterfly and bronze in the 200m freestyle.
Lily’s fast swim in the 50m backstroke (31.77) earned her the Junior County Champion title, which was a remarkable achievement given her young age as the title is normally awarded to girls in the older age group category.
Owen Ottaway (12) got his county campaign off to a great start, taking silver medals in the 100m backstroke, 100m breaststroke and 200m freestyle and bronzes in the 50m backstroke and 400m freestyle, followed by Rebecca Hyatt (10) taking silvers in the 200m breaststroke and 800m freestyle and Declan Smith (14) taking bronzes in the 200m and 400m freestyle and 100m breaststroke.
Sherwood performed well in the boys nine to 10 years-old 200m freestyle final with Joseph Sadler placing fourth, William Darrington fifth and Joseph Lewis sixth.
William Joseph Lewis also achieved a place in the 200m backstroke final placing fifth and sixth respectively.
Amelia Tunnicliffe (10) made the nine to 10 year-old 200m breaststroke final, placing fifth and the 200m freestyle final, placing sixth.
Emily James (12) placed sixth in the 11/12yr 200m breaststroke final and Jade Young (13) fifth in the 13 to 14 year-old 200m breaststroke final.
The first weekend ranked amongst one of the most successful in Sutton Swimming Club’s proud history with seven Sutton SC swimmers achieving a total of 18 medals.
Ruslans Golubs (14) led the way, winning Junior County Champion titles in the 100m breaststroke and 50m and 100m butterfly, adding silvers to his overall medal tally in the 200m and 400m freestyle and 50m backstroke.
There were celebrations in the Fergie family with talented trio Neve (14), Mia (12) & Jim (12) taking nine medals between them.
Neve won a gold in the 50m backstroke, silver in the 200m freestyle and two bronzes in the 50m and 800m freestyle.
Mia won a gold in the 400m Individual Medley and 100m butterfly and silver in the 50m butterfly and Jim a gold in the 50m butterfly and silver in the 100m butterfly. Sophie Bunker (14) achieved her first ever County Championship medal, taking bronze in the 50m freestyle with younger sister Ellie (10) also taking a bronze in the 200m breaststroke.
County Championship debutant, Matthew Woodall (9) took bronze in the 50m butterfly, which a great achievement considering he was the younger age in a combined nine to 10 year age group.
The Sutton SC squad also notched up 100 personal best times from 115 swims and achieved 22 Midland Regional qualification times; an outstanding first weekend.
Pictured: 12yr old Lily Boseley & 14yr old Amelia Sale, Sherwood Colliery SC Junior County Champions
Pictured: 14yr olds Declan Smith (Sherwood SC), Rhys Taylor (Mansfield SC) & Ruslans Golubs (Sutton SC)