Ulster Open Championships 2021

Stan Sheppard

Ulster Short Course Championships 2021

5th - 7th November 2021



Day 1


A return to open competition saw the first holding of the Ulster Short Course Championships since November 2019 when the event was held in Lisburn under very different conditions and circumstances. 2 years later the swimmers were preparing for they first day  of competition at  Lisnasharragh Leisure Centre which replaced its predecessor - ‘The Robinson Centre’ and anyone who remembers the old centre will agree that the new facility is a welcome upgrade and superb addition to the competition circuit. 


The morning heats saw the Lisburn swimmers (fresh from a morning training session) get off in style with Ava McNamara making the 200BRS final and Ulster Senior Champs debutant, Bryn Fitzpatrick doing the same with a huge PB in the mens event. A special mention to Bryns younger brother Lewis who was also swimming in his first Open meet clocking a PB time of 2.54.84.


Sasha Quinn made a return to action in the 50BC with Conor Murphy dipping under 30 seconds in a time of 29.87 in the mens event.  Also making his first appearance at an Ulster Open meet was Thomas Price and he will be delighted with a PB time of 31.35.  In the 200IM it was a first Regional Open Meet for Sinead McQ in the 200IM who competed well and she will be stronger for the experience going forward.


Jessika Robson was delighted to get her championships kicked off and was elated that this came in the form of a 100BF and a solid PB swim of 1.10.37. Also swimming in the heats of this event was Emilee Edgar who blitzed her previous best time in a time of 1.14.50 - certainly one to watch for next years meet.


It was like an episode from dads army as Sarah McCracken (22) and Fiona Cash (23) got their championships off to a solid start coming in just marginally outside their best times in the 50FC.  However is was Siomha Brady who was the stand out amongst the girls taking 1.29 seconds off her entry time.  14 year old Alfie Shaw was another Lisburn junior at his first open meet and in an event that’s fast becoming somewhat of a standout for him he again went under 27 seconds clocking an impressive 26.62.


The heats concluded with some relay action and despite both teams being depleted all swimmers stepped up and put on a great show for their team mates. The Men were unlucky missing out on a Bronze medal by only 4 tenths of a second, the women, Sarah, Fiona, Sasha and Ava were not to be outdone edging out Leander by one one hundredth of a second with Ava anchoring the team home in a time of 1.52.15.


On to the finals and it was Moya O’Kane defying the odds and producing a PB swim in the final of the 50BC coming home in 7th place. In the mens final there were 3 Lisburn swimmers vying for the podium, Daniel Mulholland, Daniel Edgar and Adam Colgan had all swam under or close to their life time bests to make it into the final with Daniel M breaking the club record he set a few weeks ago once more in the heats.  Indeed it was Daniel M who would pick up a brilliant silver medal in yet another club record time of 26.77 with Adam and Daniel 5th and 6th swimming under 28 seconds and under the personal bests.


In the 100BF Toni Jamison was Lisburns sole representative in the final and showed composure and positive signs of a return to form bettering her heat time to finish 6th in the final in a time of 1.06.15.  Daniel Edgar was close to breaking the 60 second barrier on the 100BF again in the final coming home in 7th place in a time of 1.00.34, meanwhile Adam Colgan who has taken massive strides forward in this event and came home in 4th place with a credible improvement from 1.00.54 down to 58.09.


In the 50FC Adam Colgan was again in action and having just come out of the 100BF was a little weary coming home in a nonetheless creditable 7th place.  Amongst the medals again and with yet another best time, team mate Daniel Mulholland claimed a superb bronze medal in a PB time of 23.85 - 2 podiums in the one session was a great start to the meet for Daniel.


In the 400FC Toni Jamison (6th), Ava McNamara (5th) and Jessika Robson (4th) went in the fastest heat in the finals session. There was some great swimming from the girls after a busy first day but it was Jessika who produced a huge PB and a time of 4.34.30 to claim her first Ulster Junior title as the fastest U16 female in the event. However, eclipsing even that was Daniel Edgar in the 400FC, again, with no heats in this event the fastest heat went in the finals session.  Daniel was ranked 4th going into the race and trailed the top seeds by 15 seconds, however swimming with  determination and composure Daniel won comfortably with a massive PB of 16.76 seconds and a time of 4.15.62, the was enough to see him crowned both Ulster Junior and Senior Champion in the 400FC


Worthy mention to big Adam Colgan with four swims in the morning heats, four best times, into three finals, completed in less than 60 minutes, two more best times and two fourth places.  Adam has recently joined Lisburn from Lecale and credit goes to them and his previous coaches who have done a fantastic job with him to this point



Friday Results 

Womens 200 FTR 

Men 200 FTR 4th (C team) 

200 BRS     Bryn 7th (first senior final) 

400 FC        Ava 5th Toni 6th PB, Jess 4th and ULSTER JUNIOR CHAMPION  

400 FC        Seamus 7th, Daniel E 1st and ULSTER SENIOR AND JUNIOR CHAMPION 

50 BC        Moya 7th 

50 BC        Adam 4th, Daniel M 2nd 

100 BF        Toni 6th 

100 BF        Daniel E 7th Adam  4th 

50 FC        Daniel M 3rd , Adam 7th, Daniel E 6th. 





Day 2 


Day 2 started in Lisburn training ahead of heading to Lisnasharragh for some more competition swims. The challenge of maintaining training volumes and ‘swimming through’ the competition had been thrown down by the coaches and taken up by the swimmers.  Every single swimmer has brought class swimming to this meet. Under tough training conditions, not rested, defiantly not tapered and all had stepped up and produced their best.


Seamus Carroll who has trained very well lately was very unlucky to take ill days before the competition started, showing admirable determination he was keen to swim in the 200FC however was under par and unable to give his best on the day - he will go again and no doubt perform much better when fully recovered. In the womens 200FC Andrea Cox got her championships off to a steady start falling just short of the time she set a few weeks back to the Aspiring Champions meet, Ava McNamara was the standout of the Lisburn girls with an impressive PB swim of 2.10.61 putting her into the evening final. Toni Jamison didn’t let anyone down on her 200FC, a reliable as clockwork even split, PB, job done.


Jessika Robson and Emilee Edgar both PB’d in the heats of the 200BC, Jessika ranking 4th for the evening final.  For the boys Adam Colgan and Conor Murphy both swam lifetime bests to make the final meanwhile Alexi Jacquemin, Alfie Shaw and Thomas Price produced PB swims with Thomas’s 2.27.14 a particularly notable effort.  


Siomha Brady was back in action in the womens 100BRS swimming a solid 2.04.63 while more finals places were secured in the with Sarah McCracken (PB) and Ava McNamara qualifying in 2nd and 5th respectively. In the mens event Paul Cox qualified for the evening final while Bryn Fitzpatrick set another PB time off 1.13.81 and Alexi Jacquemin also setting a life time best of 1.18.94.


Paul Cox and Daniel Mulholland cruised into the 100IM final while Andrea Cox did the same in the womens 50BF and Toni Jamison almost got under 30 seconds coming in 10th in a PB time of 30.08.  Daniel made another final in the mens 50BF and was joined by the industrious Adam Colgan who set a huge PB to qualify just behind his team mate in 4th.


Moving on to the finals and again the stand out performance has to go to Daniel E who this carried on his form from the 400 free on Friday in to the 800 event and again doubled up on the titles taking both the Ulster Senior and Junior Champion medals. Huge credit also goes to Jessika Robson who now has two junior titles to her name after taking home the overall silver in her 800 free and also claiming the Ulster Junior Champion Title as the best U16 female. Special mention to Adam Colgan for his first Open medal in the 200BC - superb swim also from Conor Murphy who found another 5 seconds between heat and final.


Results Day 2; 

200 FC        Ava McN 8th

200 BC     Adam Colgan 3rd (1st senior medal) Conor Murphy 5th (first Irish SC qual time) 

100 BrS    Sarah McCracken 2nd(first PB in 2 years ) Ava McN 6th

100 IM        Daniel M 3rd 

50 BF        Andrea C 7th 

50 BF         Daniel M 3rd (claiming quite a collection), Adam C 4th 

800 FC        Jessika R 2nd UJC 

800 FC        Daniel E 1st USC and UJC 




Day 3 


Swim Ulster Short Course Championships = more successes for Lisburn City SC swimmers. The heats saw PBs aplenty with Moya O’Kane, Jessika Robson and Siomha Brady all on form in the 100BC. In the mens event Lisburn swimmers littered the final with Adam, Daniel M, Daniel Edgar and Conor Murphy all making the evening final and Thomas Price shattering his previous life time best.  Veteran, Sarah McCracken turned back the clock to qualify 4th on the 50 BRS while Paul Cox and Daniel Mulholland put themselves in contention for the 50BRS final with solid heat swims.  Toni Jamison cruised into the final of the womens 200BF meanwhile Paul Cox and Adam Colgan made outside lanes in the 100FC 


To cap a great mornings swimming both relays got on the podium with bronze medals, women’s team of Jessika R, Sarah McC, Andrea C, Fiona C and the mens team of Daniel E, Paul C, Daniel M and Adam C all putting in great swims.


Other first timers at the meet this weekend where Thomas P, Eimlee E, Alexi J, Alfie S, Emily C, Sinead McQ and Síomha B, all of whom where competing in their first Senior Ulster Meet. 


Jessika Robson got the finals off to a great start with a PB and 5th placed finish in the 100BC in the mens event Daniel Mulholland finished 4th in a time of 59.03 with Adam C in 4th and Conor Murphy 7th in a PB time of 1.02.98.  Sarah McCracken had a great swim in the 50BRS, another PB and she can count herself unlucky to miss out on a medal having to settle for a 4th place finish.  In the 50BRS Daniel Mulholland also produced a PB swim but was outside the medals and behind team mate and silver medalist Paul Cox who clocked a rapid 29.45 life time best missing out on the gold by 14 hundredths of a second. Toni Jamison improved throughout this meet and kept her best for last with a brilliant PB and bronze medal in the 200BF coming home in a time of 2.23.81. The Mens 100FC saw Paul Cox come out just ahead of Adam Colgan with just over 2 tenths of a second splitting 7th and 8th.


Swimmer of the day has to go to Jessika Robson who on day 3 of a busy meet produced a controlled and measured distance swim in the 1500FC to win both the Ulster Senior Title and Junior Title. In the mens event Daniel Edgar just fell away at the end but produced a 54 second PB to take 2nd and silver behind the impressive Matthew Hand of Ards.



Results Day 3; 

100 BC    Jess R 5th 

100 BC    Daniel M 4th, Adam C 5th, Conor M 7th

50 BRS    Sarah McC 4th

50 BRS    Paul Cox, Daniel M 5th 

200 BF        Toni J

100 FC        Paul C 7th, Adam C 8th

1500 FC    Jess R UST and UJT

1500 FC    Daniel E. 




Medal Table

3 Ulster Senior Titles 

4 Ulster Junior Titles 

6 Silver

7 Bronze



Finally, my thanks to Dave for his assistance over a very busy weekend, his input and feedback is valued not only by me but also by the swimmers, before during and after their races.  Thanks also to Dave for photographing the presentations and to Paul Cox for taking some photos while the swimmers were racing. A special mention to the parents who volunteered for duties during the meet, we really appreciate you giving up your time to help the Club fulfil its commitments to Swim Ulster and also the contribution you make to ensuring the meet was a success.



The Lisburn team for the meet;

Siomha B, Samus C, Fiona C, Adam C, Andrea C, Paul C, Daniel E, Emilee E, Patrick F, Bryn F, Alexis F, Toni J, Sarah McC, Ava McN, Sinead McQ, Daniel M, Conor M, Moya O'K, Thomas P, Sasha Q, Jessika R, Alfie S, 



Stan Sheppard

Head Coach

Lisburn City Swimming Club