Christopher shines in Coventry

SWIMMING: As England celebrates its most successful Commonwealth Games in the pool, Stowmarket is enjoying its own team triumph on the regional circuit.

By Debbie Watson

SWIMMING

AS England celebrates its most successful Commonwealth Games in the pool, Stowmarket is enjoying its own team triumph on the regional circuit.

The club recently pitched its most victorious squad ever at the 2002 Midland District British Age Group Category (BAGCAT) Championship in Coventry.

Joshua MacMullan and James Christopher have both represented the club before at the Midlands while James Gwinnutt, Troy Lynch, Adam Batchelor, Jessica Beatty and Amanda King were all competing at this level for the first time.

In particular, James Christopher gave strong performances in the closely-fought butterfly events, and in the 400 metres freestyle.

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Despite beating his entry time by a massive three seconds, Christopher suffered a crushing defeat in the final of the 400m, watching a medal slip from his grasp in the closing stages.

His final time of 4:52:35 saw him just two one hundredths of a second away from the bronze.

Stowmarket coach Nick Minns commented: "To have achieved an entry time for the Midlands is an achievement these swimmers should be very proud of.

"The club has more than doubled the number of swimmers with qualifying times over the past 12 months, which is pleasing."

He added: "For James to have come so close to the medals is a character-forming experience for a swimmer with great future potential."

Times/Placings from Midland District BAGCAT Championships:

James Christopher (12 years) 200 IM Heat: 2:39.76, final 5th: 2:39.97, 200 back 9th: 2:39.95, 50 back 11th: 35.39, 200 fly 4th 2:42.89, 50 fly 6th: 33.37, 400 free 4th: 4:52.35, 200 free 8th: 2:22.44, 50 free 30th: 31.14

Adam Batchelor (14 years) 50 back 26th: 33.62

Joshua MacMullan (12 years) 50 back 28th: 36.78, 50 free 49th: 32.34

James Gwinnutt (10 years) 200 breast 30th: 3:48.90

Troy Lynch (10 years) 50 free 49th: 36.47

Jessica Beatty (13 years) 50 free 60th: 31.91, 200 back 31st: 2:46.46, 100 back 26th: 1:17.11, 50 back 30th: 3:36.39

Amanda King (13 years) 50 free 65th: 32.30

FORTHCOMING EVENTS

ASA Age Group National Championships Sheffield

Today, Day 3,

Tomorrow, Day 4

ASA National Youth Championships

Friday, August 9 – Monday, August 12.

British Short Course Championships

Thursday, August 22 – Sunday, August 25

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