EIGHT youngsters from Milngavie and Bearsden Swimming Club were in action recently at the British Youth Championships in Sheffield.
Lauren Averell, Megan Donnelly, Paige Lang, Kirstin McKinley, Holly Shearer, Calum Tait, Jack Thorpe and Julie Williams competed against some of the best young talent in the UK over five days and came away with seven pbs.
Lauren (50m freestyle), Kirstin (200m individual medley, 200m freestyle, 100m freestyle), Jack (50m freestyle) and Calum (200m breaststroke) all qualify for semi-finals, whilst Kirstin celebrated her 16th birthday in style on the Saturday when she qualified for the 16-18 year old 200m Freestyle final.
The daily round-up of results were: Day 1: Kirstin (200m Individual Medley (2.22.0), 100m Freestyle (58.3)) and Calum (200m Breaststroke (2.24.5)) to make semi finals. Lauren (100m freestyle (59.7)) and Megan (200m Butterfly(2.24.0).
Day 2: Kirstin: individual 400m Freestyle and 4x100fc relay with Lauren, Holly and Paige (4.31) to finish 17th.
Day 3: Kirstin in the 200m Freestyle (2.05.1) and 100m Butterfly (68.2) along with Lauren (66.4) and Megan (67.0). Only Kirstin’s efforts in the 200m Free were good enough to earn a semi final spot with none of the flyers making it through, sickness affecting Lauren, and Megan struggling to rediscover her early season fly form after recent open water training and competition. A fantastic semi final swim from Kirstin (2.04.0) qualified her 6th for a first final of the competition.
Day 4: Calum 100m breaststroke heats (67.5). He only marginally missed out on a semi final spot. Julie 100m backcrawl (68.5). Kirsty, Megan, Holly, Paige 4x200m freestyle relay finished as the top Scottish entrants. Individual times were Kirstin (2.05), Megan (2.11), Holly (2.11) and Paige (2.13). Overall the girls finished 16th. Kirsty finished the 200m free in 2.05 to put her ninth.
Day 5: 50m freestyle: Jack (24.3), Lauren (27.7) and Kirstin (27.6) all went in the heats, with Jack and Lauren qualifying for semi finals in their respective age groups.
Coach Craig Houston said: “Our goal for the meet was to compete a little bit better than last year where we managed one semi final and one final.
“We went down this year on the back of some great results at the Scottish Nationals and Districts, but we were still fully aware that this was a big step up.
“With all but two of the squad at the younger end of age groups, our return of semi finals and finals was a good improvement in performance from last time, and I definitely see that this group, and hopefully a few others from senior squad, have the potential to make an even bigger impact at this level over the next couple of years.
“I’d also like to to thank to Pam and Aline for their support through the week.”