Finals and Records for Sharks at Winter Nationals

Mark McKenna

TWO years after the last National event was held in December 2019, it was fantastic for our coaches and athletes to get back on poolside and go head to head with the best swimmers from around the country.


With 8 swimmers qualifying to race in 33 events across the 3 day meet, there was plenty of interest on the Swim England Live stream and in the spectator gallery from our #SharksFamily.


Day 1

Our first day started well with 14 yr old Jacob Mills swimming excellent races in the 50m & 400m Freestyle, Abby Mitchell gaining a new personal best in the 100m Breaststroke, Tom Dixon dipping under the 4 minutes 10 seconds barrier in his 400m Freestyle, while Luca De Zilva and Yasmine Sheffield got their Nationals campaign underway with excellent swims in the 200m Backstroke / 100m Butterfly / 100m I.M. & 200m I.M. / 200m Butterfly races respectively. In her first ever National swim, 15yr old Laurie Devine also made a final in the 100m Freestyle after a stunning club record time of 57.19 in the heats to qualify 4th into the evening Junior (16 & under) Final! Into the final, Laurie raced another fantastic race, touching just slightly slower than her heats swim, but still well underneath her previous best time in 57.46 to finish in 7th!

Club Records Broken = 7

Jacob Mills (14yrs 400m Freestyle); Laurie Devine (15yrs 100m Freestye, Open 100m Freestyle); Abby Mitchell (15yrs 100m Breaststroke); Yasmine Sheffield (17yrs 200m Butterfly); Luca De Zilva (18yrs 100m I.M., Open 100m I.M.)


Day 2

A busy day for the #SharksFamily, as we had some excellent races and best times from Laurie Devine (50m Free & 100m I.M.), Yasmine Sheffield (100m Butterfly & 100m I.M.), Abby Mitchell (50m Breaststroke & 100m I.M.), Luke Stevens (200m Butterfly & 1500m Freestyle), Tom Dixon (1500m Freestyle), Alex Keeble (1500m Freestyle) & Jacob Mills (50m Backstroke, 100m Freestyle). Jacob Mills finishing only 0.01 outside a county record set in 1999, and he still has another 2 years to set a faster time...

Our finalist of the day only had the one swim, the 50m Backstroke and it was a stunning swim, breaking his own County record from earlier in the season by over 0.5 seconds (25.10), making the final in 7th place. His final swim was slightly slower, but again underneath his previous county record swim (25.39) to finish in 10th.

Club Records Broken = 11

Yasmine Sheffield (17yrs 100m Butterfly); Luke Stevens (15yrs 200m Butterfly, Open 200m Butterfly, 15yrs 1500m Freestyle); Tom Dixon (16yrs 1500m Freestyle), Alex Keeble (17yrs 1500m Freestyle, Open 1500m Freestyle), Jacob Mills (14yrs 50m Backstroke, 14yrs 100m Freestyle), Luca De Zilva (18yrs 50m Backstroke, Open 50m Backstroke)

County Records Broken = 1

Luca De Zilva (Senior Male 50m Backstroke)


Day 3

Our third and final day was another exceptional day from the #SharksFamily, with a number of athletes swimming best times and racing and winning their heats brilliantly. Our races were Yasmine Sheffield (400m I.M., 50m Butterfly), Tom Dixon (400m I.M.), Luca De Zilva (50m Butterfly, 100m Backstroke), Laurie Devine (200m Freestyle), Jacob Mills (200m Freestyle, 100m Backstroke), Abby Mitchell (200m Breaststroke). There were many fantastic races through the day but the headline had to go to Luca De Zilva as he broke another County Record, this time from 2014, in the 100m Backstroke (54.87), but this was tightly followed by some exceptional best times and club records from a number of the team!!!

Club Records Broken = 6

Luca De Zilva (18yrs 50m butterfly, Open 50m Butterfly, 18yrs 100m Backstroke, Open 100m Backstroke); Jacob Mills (14yrs 200m Freestyle, 14yrs 100m Backstroke)

County Records Broken = 1

Luca De Zilva (Senior Male 100m Backstroke)


An incredible weekend from a fantastic group of swimmers, who are already excited to get back into the training pool and practice what they have learned...



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