Karen helps Ipswich overcome breakdown

SWIMMING: From start to finish, drama surrounded Ipswich's part in the London Region Speedo League.Even before the Suffolk side could leave the county's perimeter, the swimmers' coach had broken down and an emergency plan was called for.

By Debbie Watson


FROM start to finish, drama surrounded Ipswich's part in the London Region Speedo League.

Even before the Suffolk side could leave the county's perimeter, the swimmers' coach had broken down and an emergency plan was called for.

In the end it was the job of parents and team members to help ferry the entire squad to Enfield for what was to prove a closely-fought gala throughout.

Ipswich found themselves particularly closely matched with the Cambridge side on the night, and the two sides offered some tense performances for the spectators.

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The event proved a perfect stage for the talents of Suffolk's stronger swimmers – particularly that of Karen Pickering, Zoe Cray, Matt Vinter and Phillip Gallagher.

Pickering sensationally proved her strength, taking top spot in both the Ladies individual medley and the 100m butterfly.

She left the freestyle and backstroke triumph to Cray, while Suzanne Davis stole the final Ladies Open crown in the 100m breastroke.

Great swims were also produced by the younger female contingent.

Kimberley Maskell and Amy Swallow proved their youthful presence in the pool, each scooping a second placing.

The mens side proved equally determined to take some top three positions.

Swimming in the open age group, John Sargent, Phillip Gallagher, Chris Paine and James Freezer all had impressive events.

The points tally remained so close throughout the night that it was difficult to predict to which team the winning trophy would go.

Eventually Ipswich narrowly missed going to the A Final by six points and will instead go on to the B Final.

This is the third year in a row that Ipswich has made its way in to the Speedo Final and the team is thrilled to be on its way to the event. It will take place on Sunday, April 27, 2003 at Ponds Forge, Sheffield.


Final Results: 1st City Of Cambridge 193 pts, 2nd Ipswich 187 pts, 3rd Ealing 181 pts, 4th West Suffolk 178 pts, 5th Hillingdon 176 pts and 6th Hatfield 132 pts.

Ladies Open Individual Medley: 1st Karen Pickering 2.17.98. Ladies Open 4 x Medley Relay: 1st 2.00.81. Ladies Open Butterfly: 1st Karen Pickering 1.03.92. Ladies Open Backstroke: 1st Zoe Cray 1.02.41. Ladies Open Breaststroke: 1st Susanne Davies 1.15.55. Ladies Open Freestyle: 1st Zoe Cray 57.02. Ladies Open Freestyle Relay: 1st 2.43.84.

Girls 9-11 yrs 4 x Freestyle relay: 3rd 2.16.61. Medley relay: 3rd 2.37.89.

Girls 10-11 yrs: 50m backstroke, 4th Amy Swallow 40.11. 50m butterfly: 2nd Kimberly Maskell 36.67. 50m breaststroke: 2nd Amy Swallow 42.97. 50m freestyle: 3rd Kimberly Maskell 32.40.

Girls 13/U 4 x Medley relay: 6th 2.19.69. Freestyle relay: 3rd 2.01.84. 100m breaststroke: 6th Rebecca Harris 1.25.66. 100m backstroke: 6th Abby Maynard 1.17.99. 100m butterfly:6th Abby Maynard 1.18.64. 100m freestyle: 5th 1.04.28.

Girls 15/U 4 x freestyle relay: 5th 1.57.48, medley relay, 4th 2.12.33. 100m backstroke: 5th Elisa Calver 1.11.00. 100m butterfly: 1st Abbie Thorrington 1.07.12. 100m freestyle: 5th Abbie Thorrington 1.02.20. 100m breaststroke: 5th Lucy Schofield 1.2.25.

Men's Open Individual Medley: 3rd Phillip Gallagher 2.15.11. Men's Open 4 x medley relay: 2nd 1.54.20. Men's Open Butterfly: 3rd John Sargent 1.00.96. Men's Open Backstroke: 3rd Chris Paine 1.01.99. Men's Open Breaststroke: 3rd James Freezer 1.08.53. Men's Open Freestyle: 2nd Phillip Gallagher 54.11. Men's Open Freestyle Relay: 3rd 2.35.05.

Boys 9-11 yrs 4 x Freestyle relay: 5th 2.22.24. Medley relay: 3rd 2.41.05.

Boys 10-11 yrs 50m backstroke: 6th Alex Pajak 42.11. 50m butterfly: 2nd Andrew Bigley 36.74. 50m breaststroke: 5th Ryan Grimwood 46.64. 50m freestyle: 2nd Andrew Bigley 33.17.

Boys 13/U 4 x medley relay: 2nd 1.12.27. Freestyle relay: 2nd 1.56.61. 100m breaststroke: 3rd Robert Nixon 1.20.61. 100m backstroke: 5th William Boosey 1.15.91. 100m butterfly: 4th Michael Pugh 1.14.14. 100m freestyle: 3rd William Boosey 1.01.99.

Boys 15/U 4 x Freestyle relay: 2nd 1.47.70. Medley relay: 5th 2.05.07. 100m backstroke: 5th Matt Paine 1.07.23. 100m butterfly: 1st Matt Vinter 1.03.74. 100m freestyle: 2nd Matt Vinter 57.30. 100m breaststroke: 6th David Gallagher 1.19.91.

The following were part of the relay teams: Sally Nixon, Lydia Decarvalho, John Mason, Stephanie Calver, Tim Price, Kirsty Binnington, Tom Hogan, Louise Howes, Ben Wood, Samantha Berry, Emma Game and Rebecca Cotton.

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