Newmarket Open Report

Matt Boreham

Coach Report: Newmarket Meet 4th & 5th December  

Nineteen swimmers across the club competed at Newmarket over the weekend,

completing 95 swims in total and achieving an incredible 75% new PBs. Spectators were allowed to watch on the Saturday and technical difficulties with the live stream for both days. The swimmers behaved exceptionally in the sports hall and on the poolside, and seemed to have a good time except for the low temperature of the hall and the lighting on

poolside. 

We started the weekend extremely strong with the swimmers in the first session achieving 12 PBs out of 14 swims. Sam T first took the plunge in the 200m breaststroke and knocked off 8 seconds from his entry time (2:56.48). Five girls then continued the successes in the 200m individual medley. Eve 3:30.37 (26s), Sophie 3:04.44 (9s), Iona 2:51.94 (11s), Flo 2:51.48 (10s) & Hannah 2:48.54 (1s). This was then followed by two Suffolk County qualified swims for 50m butterfly from Diggory (47.57) and Oliver (43.70) in Age Group Development. The session finished with girls 100m breaststroke and boys 100m backstroke with an exceptionally close race between Sam and Dan in the same heat finishing within 0.15s of each other. 

Session 2 was particularly challenging for the swimmers, with tough events and quite late swimming with limited lighting on poolside. Notable swims from Iona taking 4 seconds off her 50m butterfly time (34.62), Flo smashing her 100m backstroke time (1:17.93) and Eve’s very strong 200m breaststroke (3:49.35). Elaine and I were extremely impressed with the swimmers’ mindset when races didn't quite go to plan, and pushed forward to their next race. They took on board our feedback, and always came to talk after their race. 

Saturday was also the day where photography skills were not on point and the team photo missed off a few swimmers. This was rectified on day two with better photos of the swimmers completing their land-based warm up in the hall and a team photo including all of the swimmers. 

Sunday followed the same trend as the day before, Deben swimmers starting off the competition strong and throughout the day seeing them getting tired. The boys started with 100m freestyle with Oliver knocking off another 3 seconds from his Development Meet time about 4 weeks earlier. Sam J also put in an incredible 1:08.84 (7 seconds PB). Amber was the only girl from Deben who competed in 200m freestyle but epitomised the meaning of consistency with strong technical focus which supported her stamina to push through the swim to 2:41.82, 15 seconds faster than her previous time. Fast time then came thick and fast in the 50m backstroke for girls, seeing new best times for Isobel, Josie, Bella, Katie, Iona and Flo; and all of the Deben boys in the 100m individual medley performed faster than their previous times: Angus, Sam J, Eddie, Sam T and Dan. Session 3 concluded with an incredible 19 new best times out of 24 swims and lots of medals. 

Session 4 saw a reversal in events for the boys and girls. 200m freestyle for boys once again was extremely strong with consistently good technique across the swims. Oliver, Angus, Eddie, Sam J, Sam T and Dan all improved on their previous times. The girls then followed suit in the 50m breaststroke with phenomenal swims from Isobel (49.73) and Josie (45.73) in particular taking out significant chucks in their entry times. The boys 50m backstroke event wasn’t very popular amongst our swimmers and we were quickly drawing our attention back to the girls for 100m freestyle. Katie (1:15.42), Bella (1:19.82) and Iona (1:10.51) especially showed significantly strong swims. The boys were still staying clear of the pool except for Oliver who rose to the challenge of 100m butterfly and produced a fantastic swim 1:37.37 achieving his second County qualifying time. The girls then swarmed to the pool once more and all smashed their 100m individual medley times: Amber & Flo (7 seconds), Iona, Hannah & Eve (2 seconds). Session 4 concluded with 22 faster swims than previous out of 29 total swims.          

The final session was the toughest of the weekend, finishing with 200m backstroke and 50m freestyle. The boys found their inner strength (probably because of their avoidance of the previous session’s races!) Sam J kicked off their successes with a jaw-dropping 200m backstroke 2:54.89 (20 seconds faster than his entry). Eddie and Sam followed Sam’s lead and put in decent swims also faster than their entry times. It was then the turn of the two Sophie’s (H & Q) and Iona to dominate the 200m backstroke. Sophie H took off 14 seconds of her entry time (2:52.95). Iona, who had been having a brilliant weekend on the verge of withdrawing from the event, persevered and still managed to destroy her entry time by 8 seconds (2:48.23). Sophie Q, who looked quite relaxed in the event, and did not expect to perform well, improved her time by 7 seconds (2:37.06). The final event of the competition was the hardest one for swimmers to improve, also known as the splash and dash, 50m freestyle. The boys were like rockets, and were dominating the pool with their swims. The girls had completed more races across the weekend and were clearly tiring. Isobel’s swim was a big boost for the team with an incredible 6 second improvement from her entry time. Then, out of nowhere came the stalwart Iona who gritted her teeth and absolutely went for it finishing her weekend with yet another PB, taking off a second in her 50m freestyle.  

All of the swimmers performed incredibly well over the entire weekend and we had a good laugh too. I was super impressed with them all and I took away two big things from the swimmer’s attitude and behaviour from the weekend. They have an incredible way of dealing with when things go wrong, and their complete drive and determination to keep fighting even when they are tired or cold. 

 

Thank you to Elaine, Chris and Tristan for their support in managing the team and supporting me on poolside. The swimmers for their incredible outlook of the competition, maturity and teamwork. And special mention to Neil for his incredible entertainment!

Matt Boreham

Head Coach Development Pathway