Teamipswich qualify for finals
SWIMMING Teamipswich Swimming have qualified for the national finals of the Speedo League in April next year after putting in a masterful performance to win the London Speedo League final.
Teamipswich Swimming have qualified for the national finals of the Speedo League in April next year after putting in a masterful performance to win the London Speedo League final.
Travelling to Hatfield for the final round of the highly competitive league, Teamipswich started the day top of the league but knew they would have to work hard to hold off some strong competition.
The stage was set with the London Borough of Ealing and Teamipswich Swimming unbeaten in the first two rounds of the competition, while Hatfield, the defending national champions, had little to lose and a university team from which to select.
Eleanor Haynes got the ball rolling for Teamipswich with a time of 2.27.67 and a sixth-place finish in the ladies 200m medley, while Lewis Coleman swam a personal best to secure second place in the men's event with a time of 2.11.12.
The Teamipswich junior swimmers have been nothing short of awesome throughout all of the previous rounds and once again they did not disappoint.
Bethany Catchpole, Karla Hutchinson, Gemma Bartle and Chloe Price swept to victory in the 11 and under freestyle relay, while the boys' team of William Davis, Jonathan Andvig, Charlie Smith and Kilian Korth did another magnificent job to finish second in their freestyle event.
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The girls' 13 and under medley team of Grace Williams, Rachel Andvig, Jennifer Redmond and Charlotte Bonnar secured third place, while the boys' 13 and under medley team of Jason Rodd, Jonathan Davis, Jack Hollis and George Bartle also put third-place points in the Teamipswich pot.
The girls' 15 and under freestyle relay of Rebecca Reader, Alex Seal, Lydia DeCarvalho and Eleanor Haynes were also third-place finishers, while the boys' 15 and under freestyle team of Andrew Bigley, Jason Rodd, Troy Lynch and Lewis Coleman went one place better when snatching second place from rivals Ealing.
With two relays left in the first quarter of proceedings, the unbeaten quartet of Zoe Cray, Amy Swallow, Abbie Thorrington and Karen Pickering powered to yet another win, this time with a three-second margin of victory.
The men's team of Konrad Korth, Lewis Coleman, William Boosey and Matt Vinter had to settle for fourth spot, but nevertheless added much- needed points to the totals.
The points were close, but with Teamipswich trailing the two London teams, some tough swimming was needed.
Chloe Price swam a great race in the 11 and under 50m backstroke, but just lost out on the touch to end up in fourth place with a time of 37.98.
Team-mate Kilian Korth swam a great personal best time of 34.44 to finish in top spot in the boys' 11 and under 50m backstroke.
Heather Rodwell stepped up and delivered a PB time in the 13 and under 100m breaststroke of 1.21.97 to finish in fourth place, while Jonathan Davis took his side another big step forward when also setting a best time of 1.20.11 in the boys' 100m breaststroke to finish in third place.
Rebecca Reader also secured third place points when finishing the 100m backstroke in 1.07.05, while Andrew Bigley also had to settle for a third place finish in the boy's backstroke with a new best time of 1.04.44.
International triathlete Abbie Thorrington swam another great race to finish in second place in the ladies 100m butterfly with a time of 1.06.49, while William Boosey finished sixth in the men's butterfly event in 1.03.22.
The points were now fairly even, with Ealing, Hatfield and Teamipswich swapping positions after every race and with every point counting.
Chloe Price swam a solid 50m butterfly in 37.63 to secure fourth place, while Charlie Smith had victory snatched from his grasp when finishing second in the boys' race with a time of 34.97, just 1/100th of a second behind the winner.
The girls' 13 and under 100m backstroke saw Coral Young swim one of her best times of the year with a 1.11.96 and gain a fourth place finish, while Jason Rodd swam 1.09.81 to grab third place for the points score.
Eleanor Haynes was third in the girls' 15 and under 100m butterfly in 1.09.51, while Andrew Bigley secured a much-needed second place when swimming a best time of 1.02.26 in the boys' 100m butterfly.
Zoe Cray swam an East Region record in the ladies 100m backstroke to gain maximum points for the cause in a time of 1.02.58, while Konrad Korth had to settle for sixth place in the boys' backstroke event in a time of 1.02.74.
Bethany Catchpole was sixth in the 11 and under 50m breaststroke in 42.06, while William Davis set a best time of 41.77 when putting vital points in the pot for a second place finish in the boys' 50m breaststroke.
The teams were literally neck and neck with pressure and tension starting to make a few swimmers wobble under the spotlight, but there was no respite in sight.
Jennifer Redmond swam 1.12.28 for the girls' 13 and under 100m
butterfly to secure a fourth-place finish, while Jack Hollis swam 1.10.28 for the boys' race and gained
another fourth place.
Rebecca Reader grabbed third place in the 100m freestyle with 1.00.86, while Troy Lynch swam another solid 100m freestyle to also finish in third spot with a time of 55.65.
Amy Swallow eclipsed her previous best time in the ladies' 100m breaststroke to record an outstanding 1.13.99 and a second-place
finish, while Lewis Coleman also finished second in 1.06.66.
Bethany Catchpole stormed to victory in the 11 and under 50m freestyle in 31.55, while Kilian Korth secured second-place points in the boys' 50m freestyle with a time of 31.08.
Charlotte Bonnar had to settle for fourth place in the 13 and under 100m freestyle in 1.03.48, while Jason Rodd swam 59.96 to finish in third spot.
Amy Swallow was in action again, this time in the 15 and under 100m breaststroke and won in 1.14.93.
Lewis Coleman also secured maximum points with a win in the boys' 15 and under 100m breaststroke with 1.08.12.
Zoe Cray added an awesome 100m freestyle of 57.27 to her list of wins when also adding maximum points for Teamipswich.
Cray's win gave her the 'triple-double' of the series, winning both the 100m freestyle and 100m backstroke in all three rounds, an impressive feat considering the standard of competition.
Matt Vinter also had a valiant performance in the men's 100m freestyle when swimming an awesome 53.28 to finish second.
With 42 events down and just eight relays to go, Ealing and Teamipswich were both tied on points with Hatfield just a single point ahead.
With the pressure on, the girls' 11 and under medley team of Chloe Price, Bethany Catchpole, Ellen Oxbrow and Gemma Bartle stepped up to the plate and secured first place for the team, while the boy's team of Kilian Korth, William Davis, Charlie Smith and Jonathan Andvig also secured maximum points.
The girls' 13 and under freestyle relay of April Hyam, Coral Young, Rachel Andvig and Charlotte Bonnar had to settle for a hard fought second place finish, as did the boys' team of Jason Rodd, Jonathan Davis, George Bartle and Oliver Bott.
The girls' 15 and under medley team of Rebecca Reader, Amy Swallow, Eleanor Haynes and Alex Seal again scored maximum points, while the boys' team of Brendon Marsh, Lewis Coleman, Andrew Bigley and Troy Lynch had to settle for second spot.
With just two relays left the scores were still too close to call.
The team of Rebecca Reader, Alex Seal, Abbie Thorrington, Sophie Poole, Zoe Cray and Karen Pickering swept all before them when winning the ladies 6 x 50 freestyle team, while the men's team of Matt Vinter, Konrad Korth, Troy Lynch, Chris Taylor, William Boosey and Lewis Coleman finished second.
This was enough to see Teamipswich crowned league champions by 21 points and qualify them for the Speedo League
Head coach Dave Champion said: “This is a fantastic result for everyone involved with the team. Swimmers, coaches, parents and supporters - we all earned that result, every single point.”
He added: “I asked the questions of them, could they step up? And the team answered with the win. You couldn't ask for a more
dramatic reply than that.”
The win capped a remarkable year for Teamipswich who had already won the county championships in individuals and relays and had finished fourth in the national junior final.
Happy team photo see tonight's Evening Star