Hoddesdon Summer Sprint June 18

15 swimmers went to Borehamwood for the Hoddesdon Summer Sprint meet in what turned out to be a very hot facility, spoiling many attempts for good times. However, those there made the most of things.

The meet began with the 100 IM and 9 year old Saya Khalili led off with 1:53.12 for her first legal IM & 9th place. Following her disqualification at Terry Davies meet, Eva Lawson smashed her best to claim 2nd place in 1:27.04, some 10 seconds faster than previously. She was followed by Chrissie Soulsby, Emma Hockney & Amelia Dewar in the 11 year old section and Soulsby came out on top with 1:27.89 for victory in the age group with Hockney 4th (1:31.48) and Dewar improving to 1:35.99 in 5th. The final swimmers in the 12 years group were Abigail Briers and Lydia Wisely. Briers just won the club battle with 1:22.65 to Wisely’s 1:24.00 as they both posted pbs and qualified for the skins (elimination) event in the evening.

In the Girls’ 50m Backstroke Khalili again had a first time swim with 55.37 before Anna & Kitti Cooper, in their first Open meet picked up silver and bronze 9 years medals with 51.70 & 52.68 respectively. Chrissie Soulsby, Hockney & Dewar resumed battle in the backstroke with Soulsby again just taking team honour with 40.13 for 3rd, Hockney 40.36 in 4th & Dewar 41.45 placing 5th as all 3 girls went pb. Izzy Sansom claimed her own 5th place in the Open category with 38.11 whilst for the boys Adi Cooper, racing for the first time in a while improved to 36.71, good enough for the win in the 13 years boys’ age group.

In the 100m Fly, Lawson found another way to upset the judges and find herself disqualified as she learns the vagaries of racing and she was followed by Briers and Wisely duelling it out in the 12 years category, Briers pocketing the silver medal in 1:26.93 and Wisely the bronze.

Khalili was 5th in the girls’ 50m Breast before Hockney collected the silver as did Issy Soulsby with Izzy Sansom in her final race placing 5th again. In the boys’ side, Adi Cooper placed 2nd with another pb (40.57) and Fionn Clare took 6th chopping 6 seconds from his best in posting 59.10.

In the 100m free Khalili picked up her first ever Open Meet medal with 1:44.08 for silver and Lawson put her disappointment of the d/q behind her to also pick up silver in 1:19.65. Dewar reduced her best by nearly 5 seconds and Chrissie Soulsby hers by over 7 to claim 5th & 4th whilst Hockney also improved from her best set only at the Terry davies meet to take a worthy silver medal. Briers and Wisely swam head to head again with Briers posting 1:11.71 for 4th and Wisely coming home in 8th place whilst Izzy Sansom took 7th and Issy Soulsby 4th, both just off their best times ever.

The boys finished off the first session with Cooper making it 2 golds on the day with 1:06.09 improving just over 2 seconds for the win.

The second session began with Issy Soulsby being the club’s only representative in the 200 IM and she did not disappoint claiming the bronze medal and also making the Skins event for the evening.

In the 50m Free there was more club success despite everyone showing signs  of tiredness due to the water temperature and Hockney won her first Gold in 34.38. Briers just pipped Wisely with 32.32 (2nd) to 33.67 & Issy Soulsby took home the gold in 30.24. Harry & george Thorne joined the party in the afternoon for the 50m Free taking gold and 4th for Harry & George respectively and harry missing his pb by just 0.15 seconds and George lowering his to 27.74.

In the 100m Backstroke, Chrissie Soulsby was in contention throughout, eventually settling for the silver having sliced just over 2 seconds from her best as she becomes ever more race conscious and, in the boys, George Thorne made it a brace of silvers for the club as he cruised to 1:14.42.

Chrissie Soulsby followed the backstroke with an easy win in the 50m fly coming home almost 4 seconds ahead of her opposition over the 2 lengths. Older sister Issy backed it up with another silver medal in 32.71 as she comes into form late in the season. Meanwhile Wisely narrowly got the better of Briers in their private battles picking up 4th in 39.01 against Abigail’s 5th in 39.09. For the boys the brothers Thorne were close again with Harry just on top in 29.64 for Gold and George just a second slower for bronze in 30.78.

Final individual event of the meet was the 100m Breast in which Harry Thorne demonstrated again that he is returning to his best taking the silver medal less than half a second outside his best in 1:15.69.

And so to the Skins events which allowed Wisely, Briers and Issy Soulsby to show there speed as well as endurance as the rounds swum every 3 minutes tested both facets to the limit.

All 3 performed well and with both Briers and Wisely in the junior event hopes were high of good placings, especially with cash on the table for the overall winner and the swimmer who took each round.

Lydia was first to succumb placing 4th whilst Abigail claimed a round win on backstroke which surprised nobody more than herself but she made it through the rounds to contest the final which nobody poolside could split and it was down to the electronic timing to show that Abbie has just nicked it on the touch to round off a fantastic day for the youngster.

Issy Soulsby made her way through the round to the penultimate heat when, faced with two of the host club’s National swimmers she had to be content with a hard fought 3rd place overall but, hopefully, will take much confidence with her swims across the day.

Geoff Wood

Head Coach