Columbia-Shuswap Selkirks swimmers broke a club record during their most recent swim meet, the Bear Meet in Kelowna.
In fact, the club had already set their new record before they left town: they had 25 swimmers sign up to take part in the competition, the most they have brought on any road trip.
During the meet the club saw improvements by all swimmers, with more than 100 best times being recorded. Through individual effort and support the club saw several swimmers place in the top three in their age groups. Placing first were Kallum Kok, Sara Cosman, Evenge Runge, Sabina Bukmeire, Kaiya Skofteby, Julia Reid, Nico Meidema, Gavin Greasy and Elsie Ingram. Placing in the top three were Iisa Weins, Claire Caner, Avery Ann Lega, Anna Scanton, Samuel Johnson and Claire Tracy.
All the swimmers at the meet will now get ready for the Regional A Championships in Salmon Arm, March 1-3. Both coaches Nadine Quilty and Barry Healey were impressed with the swimmers’ efforts and look forward to seeing some fast racing at home.
It’s been three years in the making, but the Columbia-Shuswap Selkirks Swim Club has built a good competitive base to stand on.
“It’s not an easy task, you have to get new members, pool time so they have somewhere to swim, hire staff and develop a skills program that will reward the athletes for their hard work and skill development. But all sports clubs need a base to build from,” says Healey. “One of the main aims is to get swimmers to be able to swim 200 metres in under four minutes, two lengths each of butterfly, back stroke, breast stroke and and front crawl. Once a swimmer has met this standard, they can compete in swim meets in B.C. and Western Canada.”
After working hard since September, three more swimmers reached this standard: Sara Cosman, Anna Scranton and Nicolas Miedema, all of whom set new personal-best times while training to qualify.
In 2015, the club had around 25 members and just six swimmers in the junior group. The club’s growth since then has been mainly due to the club introducing the I Can Swim and I Can Swin Fast youth programs, with close to 35 in these alone.
During a season this group of swimmers will get the opportunity to swim up to 10 meets in the region, with a goal set at the start to try and get qualifying times and race in all events.