Banbridge ASC swimmers have a laugh in Limerick with a huge medal haul

Some young Banbridge ASC swimmers with coach Colin McMullen and two Rio-bound Olympic competitors.
Some young Banbridge ASC swimmers with coach Colin McMullen and two Rio-bound Olympic competitors.

Banbridge Amateur Swimming Club were celebrating after a proud weekend in Limerick when they brought home a huge medal haul, lots of personal bests and Division One times.

Individual medal winners were Niall McGeown, Ronan Quinn, Katie McFarlane, Finlay Wright and Dawson Patterson. These eight individual medals added to eight relay medals, resulting in a whopper 18 medals for the club.

Niall won gold in 1500m freestyle with a cracking swim. He was in control throughout, doing excellent underwater work and not breathing off the wall on his turns. He achieved a Division 1 time, not surprising as he took off over two minutes. In Niall’s 400IM, it was another fabulous swim with a huge personal best time, taking off 30 seconds, another Division 1 time and a second gold medal. He went on to win silver in 400m freestyle, taking off 17 seconds and silver in 200m freestyle, taking off a further 10 seconds. He also achieved Division 1 in these two events. He took time off in all 9 of his individual events.

Young Ronan Quinn, not long turned 11, had a super weekend’s swimming. He won gold in the gruelling 200m fly which he says he loves to swim. He achieved Division 1 in 100m fly and came in silver with a fabulous time. He took 21 seconds off in the 400IM but unfortunately an official wasn’t happy with one of his backcrawl turns and he got disqualified. Ironically, it was his first ever DQ, a hard lesson to learn at Division 2. He was in the running for a silver medal but it didn’t hold him back as he won his gold and silver medals the following day. Swimming is all about endurance, strength and taking the knocks along with the glory.

Katie MacFarlane, at just 9 years of age, came to this championship the fast route. She bypassed the development galas and only swam one qualifying gala where she achieved 3 times for Division 2. She is a natural swimmer with tremendous talent and excelled at this meet by winning silver in 100m fly, taking off 5 seconds, bronze in 100m backstroke, taking off 5 seconds and 4th in 200IM, taking off 8 seconds. She also swam well in both B relay teams.

Finlay Wright has trained hard all year and he was rewarded with a Division 1 time in 100m butterfly and a silver medal in the 400IM, as well as taking off 15 seconds in this event. He also swam in a very exciting swim- off with another swimmer, competing for 8th place in the final.

Dawson Patterson took a superb 86 seconds off his personal best in 1500m freestyle. He also achieved a Division 1 time and a bronze medal. He also took 6 seconds off his 200m freestyle and 4 seconds off his 400m freestyle. Dawson reached the final in 200m freestyle and came in 5th and 400m freestyle which was heat-declared and he came in 7th.

The girls A relay were outstanding in both their Medley and Freestyle Relay and bringing home gold in both events. Aidin Quinn, Jessica McMullen, Kathryn McGrath and Caitilin Kearney were unstoppable.

In their individual events, there were a lot of personal bests and in the freestyle relay all 4 of them swam 50 metres in and around 30 seconds.

Aidin’s 200 freestyle relay leadoff was a time of 30:16. Her 100m freestyle time took her to the final and she achieved 7th place in this very popular event. She took 3 seconds off. She is 1 second off Division 1 in this event and also 1 second off Division 1 in 100m breaststroke. She took an amazing 13 seconds off in her 200m breaststroke too.

Jessica was a flying machine in both her freestyle relay and medley relay and well deserved the gold medals. She also took 6 seconds off 200m backstroke and 1 second off 100m freestyle.

Kathryn had a great personal best times. She took 23 seconds off 400IM and came in 5th place, 16 seconds off 800m freestyle and came in 8th place and also improved in 200m backstroke, 400m freestyle and 100m backstroke.

Caitilin took a wonderful 13 seconds off in 800m freestyle as well as achieving pb’s in 100m and 200m freestyle.

Our 14 year old Declan McGeown swam great times in both medley and freestyle relays as well as taking off 4 seconds in 100m backstroke. Rachel Allenby swam well in both B relays as well as taking 4 seconds off in 200m backstroke. Sorcha Boersma swam personal bests in both 100m backstroke and 100m breaststroke and produced good times in both B medley and freestyle relays. Clodagh McGrady swam 2 events, 100m backstroke (in which she took off 2 seconds) and 100m breaststroke. Ellie Bingham swam an excellent 800m freestyle in which she achieved a 20 second personal best. She performed well in 4 other individual and both B relays.

Matthew McKee, reduced his times in both 200IM and 100m backstroke by 3 seconds but took a huge 12 seconds off in his 200m backstroke and came in 5th position in the final just a place behind his team mate Finlay Wright. Isaac Forsythe achieved an 11 second pb in 400m freestyle, 6 seconds off 200m freestyle and 4 seconds off 200m backstroke.