This year’s Otters Swimming Championships provided College with their best results for many years and a succession of firsts. Out of three heat swims College achieved three dominant first places and a very secure second place in the other. The girls produced historic results. Having never previously made either the freestyle or medley finals the girls swam outstandingly well to make both finals. This was a brilliant achievement for a team so young, and also in the process, the girls broke the seven-year-old College medley record which was previously set in a short course pool. Breaking that long course was, therefore, a superb achievement. They were also extremely close to the freestyle record (also set short course), so in truth, this swim also was the fastest ever swam by a College team. The teams consisted of Bluebelle Clayton (3rd, A), Cindy Lai (5th, Ch), Sam Rowland (L6, A), Talia Somen (3rd, W) and Electra McErlean (5th, W). All of whom will be in College next year so there is potential to improve yet further.
Whilst the boys' results don’t appear quite so striking, they also produced the best results for many years. Results will always be judged against the winning team of 2009 when College had numerous club swimmers and one of national standing. The current team are all swimmers training only at College and have therefore been produced on limited pool time and training in comparison. Their results, therefore, are exceptional. Although not making finals, all swimmers swam extremely well and certainly produced swims faster than ever (except for the winning year). Special mention must go to Henry Fong (U6, H) for his superb first leg swim, breaking the 1-minute barrier for the 100 free long course. All swimmers, however, swam fast and certainly benefitted from the planned build up of 100m competition and of 50m training arranged earlier in the term. Many congratulations to Henry Fong, Thomas Chu (4th, Xt), Leo Shen (U6, S), Kelvin Lai (U6, BH) and Boris Pustoshinskiy (5th, Xt).
Competing at the Aquatics Centre in London, home of the 2012 Olympic Games, was inspiring and it was superb to see swimmers and parents enjoying the success.
Mr Andy Osborne
Cheltenham College Swim Coach