Season review 2015/16

Where do I start with this season? 

Without any doubt the best season for Larne Swimming Club in a very long time. 

IN THE POOL

Our junior club competed in Aquasprint and while we did get relegated to division 2 we saw some real developments over the season in terms of skill level and team spirit. The future is very bright for these young athletes.

The PTL team also acquitted themselves admirably in a year when we decided that as many swimmers as possible should swim in this league.

In open competition we competed in the Ulster Age Groups and Qualifying Galas, had 38 qualifiers for Division 1 of the Irish Age Groups and while only 3 qualified for Division 2 they came home with some medals from Limerick.  There is more work to be done with our development squad to get them to a level where they can experience this 1st tier of Irish swimming.

The open championships again saw our club shine as we broke somewhere in the region of 75 records over the course of the season. At one point we held 8 Irish senior records and currently hold 10 Ulster Senior records. Not to mention all the Junior records our members broke including a medley relay record in April. 

We broke the 2 oldest short course records on the books, one of which wasn’t even broken during the era of the rubber suits!

We where the only club team to have two swimmers on the Irish team to the senior Europeans, the only team EVER to have 2 finalists at the same European Junior Championships, and we became the 1st club ever to have a male winner of a medal at European Juniors.

As if that wasn’t enough one of our guys also missed the Olympic Games by 0.05 of a second………that’s about 9mm 

We are in a position where we now have 3 Irish senior International qualifiers in our program – something that very few other teams can say.

Yes it’s true that in Conor Brines, Conor Ferguson and Danielle Hill we have 3 of the best swimmers in Ireland in our squads but they don’t do it on their own, they train in our pools, in our sessions, with our members. Without the support of YOU our members and their teammates none of this would have been possible. 

Without the dedication of the largely volunteer coaching staff we wouldn’t be able to function at all never mind achieve anywhere near the level of success above.

OUT OF THE WATER

A partnership with swimming specific kit provider Swimzi saw us launch a new corporate appearance with a radical new red and white (and green) kit……not to mention a mentoring relationship with Liam Tancock.

Behind the scenes the committee also raised the bar for not only themselves but all future committees with an increased level of professionalism and again without these volunteers none of this swimming stuff would happen.

Finally we have finished the season with an opportunity to work with an Irish company producing training aids for backstroke starts wedge.ie making next season even more exciting.

Congratulations to everyone enjoy your break ……. the hard work starts again all too soon.

P



Irish Age Groups 2016 (Updated**)

A big team of 28 swimmers travel from East Antrim to Blanchardstown in Dublin this week to compete in Swim Ireland annual season ending age group youth and open summer championships. 

While 37 swimmers qualified for the meet the slightly later scheduling means that only 28 are able to travel.

It has been a long hard season that has seen the club represented at national level in Ireland and Scotland,  (picking up numerous titles in both) as well as Internationally at European Juniors in Hungary (where again we brought home medals) and in London at European seniors. This has been a season that has seen the club start to grow into the high performing center towards which we are striving.

This weekend the youth and age group sections take centre stage….

Follow this blog to updates as we progress…..
What a way to finish the season! 

15 finalists (3 new at this level)

5 Golds (1 new at this level)

2 silver (another new medal winner)

1 bronze 

1 Irish senior record

1 Ulster Senior Record

1 Irish Junior records

1 proud coach well done everyone! !!!

European Junior Swimming Championships (Updated)

For the 3rd summer in a row Larne SC is sending representatives with an Irish international team.

Having already competed in London at the European Championships, Danielle and Conor travel to Hodmezovasarhely for the Junior Championships.

The Irish team travel to Dublin on Saturday for a team session and dinner before heading to Budapest on Sunday mowning and a 3 hour transfered south to Hodmezovasarhely.

This is Danielle’s last year of eligibility for this level of competition, having raced in Holland and Baku the last 2 years, while Conor is experiencing it for the 1st time.

The Irish team of 13 athletes looks like one of the strongest in recent years so we are looking forward to some fast racing over the next week.

You can follow the action here

 

Really poor of me not to have updated this but with being away in Hungary working it was a tough 10 days.

For those who dont already know here is a very quick round up on Danielle and Conor from the European Junior Champs last week.

At a remarkably high standard of meet the Larne swimmers once again proved that they are continuing to make the transition from National to International athlete.

Conor  picked up a silver medal in the 100 BC making him the 1st Irisb male to medal at this level

Danielle continued Larnes BC tradition with 2 Irish Junior Records on the way to a final place in the same event.

 

A fantastic end to a fantastic season for these guys

P

Irish Age Groups Division 2

A small team of only 3 swimmers from Larne Swimming Club headed to Limerick today to compete in Division 2 of the Irish Age Groups.

Holly Woodside, Siobhan Baine and Giulia Allen are all competing at this level for the first time having qualified through the Swim Ulster Regional meets.

While the team is one of the smallest travelling Junior Squad Coach Fiona Hillier, who travels with the team today, is confident they can have a great meet and finish their season on a real high. 

We will keep updating this post with results once the girls start racing tomorrow.

Day one

A fantastic 1st day of racing for the girls with Giulia swimming to three PB times – 1 in each of the heats of the medley and the breaststroke and another in the final of the breast (where she picked up a bronze to go with her 4th place from the IM). Holly Woodside also swam 2 PB times in the breaststroke making the final and placing 6th. 

Siobhan came real close to a lifetime best swim in her 1st race outside Ulster as well.

Well done girls can’t wait for the rest of the weekend
P

Scottish Nationals **updated**

****GOOD LUCK***

Conor Brines flew off today to compete for Larne SC in the Scottish Nationals over the next 5 days.

Conor has had a fantastic season so far and hoes to bring the curtain down with a few more record breaking performances.

Over the week he will be ometing in the 50, 100 & 200 FLY and 50 FREE

We will be updating this post with his results as they happen

Day one

A solid start to the meet on Day 1 with the 200Fly Con or posted a time of 2:10.59 placing him 18th and in the B final

Next up the 50 Fly 

Day two

After a slight mishap on start of his 50 fly meaning the heat swim had to be a lot more of an effort than we would have expected, Conor qualified for B final in a time of 25.6

The evening swim went much more to plan with Conor producing a much more commanding swim to clock 24.19 and a win. The time was good enough to have picked up bronze in the A final. 

This was also another Ulster Senior Record as Conor’s breakthrough season continues to impress.

Tomorrow the 50 free

Day three

After the excitement of yesterday this morning was a fun event for Conor, just the 50 free. A good heat swim saw a personal best performance but no progression to the final.

Big day tomorrow with the 100 Fly so an early night and some rest.

Day four

The last day of the meet and the main event. The heat swim of the 100 fly was a best morning swim and the time of 54.6 indicated that maybe there was some fast times to come.

The final, wow what a swim, 53.81 a new Ulster Senior Record and just outside the Irish record and the Scottish open gold!!! 

An absolutely fantastic way to round offor what has been a phenomenal year in the pool for Conor. 

Well done and here’s looking forward to an exciting next 18 months.

P

AQUASPRINT FINAL 2016

Ballymena Leisure Centre hosted the ‘B’ final of this years Divinsion 1 Aquasprint League on Friday Night.

image

Larne came into this meet with a slim chance of avoiding relegation to Div 2 after a tough season for the youngest competitors in the club.

Aquasprint is a short format gala with an emphasis on team spirit and enjoyment in an environment that has a slight competitive edge.

Over the course of the season we have seen huge improvements in the skill levels on display and, more importantly, a team spirit and enjoyment of the aport of swimming that bodes well for the future.

Sarah Moore has done a fantastic job with everyone and the addition on Fiona to the staff can only be the beginning of an exciting time for the team.

The whole team has improved beyond recongition from that 1st meet of the season.

Our underwater skills on the dives where the best in the pool across the board (and while they may not have been the fastest its important that these skills are learnt early – speed and strength can be added)

Looking forward to next year already.

Keep smiling.

Swim Uster Summer Qualifying Meet

20 swimmers competed at the last qualifying gala of the year being run by Swim Ulster this season.

This was a long course meet and provided an opportunity for swimmers to achieve qualifying times for Irish Age Goups in the summer.

For some this was their 1st qualifying gala having graduated from the development series.

Day 1

Four club members started the 800 free in the 1st session and every one of them recorded lifetime best swims and picked up the gold in their individual age groups. (Amy McCullough took an incredible 1 in 45 sec off her entry time)

Day 2
There were 26 swims on the 2nd day of the meet spread across 2 sessions. 22 Personal Bests, 5 gold, 3 silver and 5 bronze.

Special mention reserved for Luke Caldwell competing in his 1st Qualifying Meet and picking up a load of personal bests and a few medals.

Day 3

39 swims 33 personal best time 7 gold 1 silver & 3 bronze. Yan Manilili took home a bag full of gold medals today and qualifying for Div 2 in almost everything (as well as keeping us entertained with his rapping…….that’s right RAPPING!!!!)

The skills on display across the whole team really impressed me. The commitment to working the underwater phase of the race was very commendible and while there is always room for improvement this is unrecognisable from a year ago.

Well done everyone on a great weekends work.

Next up we have the Aquasprint final and the Bangor open meet in June.

Till next time

P

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