Prizes are handed out at swimming club’s big night

BANBRIDGE Amateur Swimming Club held their prize giving night last Tuesday in the Belmont Hotel

Chairperson of the swimming club, Mr John Nixon, welcomed everyone and congratulated the club for their great success over the past year. The young Aquasprint swimmers (7–11 yrs) had a great year remaining in division 1 of the league, which has a total of 24 clubs. In the Provincial Town League (10 yrs to senior level), the local club have had their best year yet, where they were runners up to Larne in Division 1.

In the open gala competitions the Banbridge club had outstanding success throughout the year with 51 top ten places held in the Ulster Youth and Age Group Championship taking nine podium positions.

The highlight of the season was the qualification of 17 swimmers to the Irish Age Group Division 2 in Limerick which was held the previous weekend and the Banbridge squad qualified for 31 finals and brought home 24 medals.

Next weekend there are 14 swimmers now who have qualified for the Irish National Age Group Division 1 and the Irish youth in Dublin and the club would like to wish all every success in these competitions.

John congratulated all the swimmers who raised a total of £946 for Clic Sargent in the recent charity swim.

He welcomed guest speaker Mr Lawrence McGivern, a member of Newry & Mourne Swimming Club who has swam in the Commonwealth Games and is now heading for the Paralympics in London 2012.

Lawrence explained that he had been swimming from nine years old and it was only when he decided that swimming was to be his sport that he excelled through sheer hard work in the pool and gym but that it had been most enjoying and he has travelled the world with his swimming achievements. He was proud to be invited to present all the trophies on their prize night

The overall winners in each age group were presented by Lawrence and were as follows:

Girls 8yrs & under (Ulster Bank Shield) - Julia Knox; Boys 8yrs & under (Thomas Ferguson Shield) - Dawson Patterson; Girls 10yrs & under (Enterprise Shield) - Sophie Mount; Boys 10yrs & under (Ladies Circle Shield) - Harry Farson; Girls 12yrs & under (The Wilson Hall Cup) - Abbie McCullough; Boys 12yrs & under (Round Table Cup) - Patrick McNiff; Girls 14yrs & under (T.T. Travel Salver) - Jenny Wilson/Megan McKenna; Boys 14yrs & under (Hamilton Ski/Sport Shield) - Scott Donnelly; Senior Girls (Down Shoes Cup) - Heather Wilson; Senior Boys (Star Trophies Shield) - Cameron McDonald.

The runner-up trophies were presented to: Girls 8yrs & under (Arthur Downey Cup) - Ruby McNiff; Boys 8yrs & under (Shooter Property Shield) - Sam Johnston; Girls 10 yrs & under (Shoefair Shield) - Lauren Armstrong; Boys 10yrs & under (Herron/Dobson Cup) - William Pinkerton; Girls 12yrs & under (Bannville House Shield) - Olivia Knox; Boys 12yrs & under (G.T.Henderson Shield) - Joel Milligan; Girls 14yrs & under (Allied Irish Bank Rose Bowl) - Poppy Robinson/Allyce Nixon; Boys 14yrs & under (Legal & General Shield) - Kealan McCambridge; Senior Girls (The Holton Shield) - Megan Whan; Senior Boys (The Hill Cup) - Daniel Chambers.

SPECIAL AWARDS - After the clubs successful year in the Aquasprint League, the top female swimmer award went to Olivia Knox and the top male swimmers was Alex Donnelly Awards were also presented to all the out going group D swimmers for their contribution over the past four years in the league and they were Ellie Purdy, Emma McElderry, Kathryn Allenby, Charlotte Campbell, Eunan Quinn, Ryan Porter, Aaron Keegan, Aaron Brown, Harry Long, Joshua McAdam, Matthew Brown and Thomas Nixon.

In the Provincial town League, Jenny Wilson was awarded the top female swimmer with Patrick Morgan the top male swimmer.

Most improved senior swimmers were Jane Kilpatrick and Michael Rafferty who have excelled throughout the season

Most improved junior swimmers were Emma McElderry, Kathryn Allenby and Aaron Keega

Most promising juniors were Jessica Robinson, Ruby McNiff, Dawson Patterson, William Pinkerton and Declan McGeown, all whom had an outstanding year and we will surely see more from them next season.

Top Juniors were Julia Knox, Lauren Armstrong, Harry Farson, Olivia Knox and Ellie Purdy

Best Newcomers were Abbie Mccullough, Lauren Robinson and. Daniel Chambers also received The Kearney Family Shield for overall Best Newcomer.

Achievement Awards were presented to all the swimmers whom qualified for division 1 and Irish youth Megan McKenna, Jenny Wilson, Jodi Doyle, Allyce Nixon, Poppy Robinson Cameron McDonald, Graham Stevenson, Patrick Morgan, and Patrick McNiff

For Division 2 Olivia Knox, Ellie Purdy, Emma McElderry, Kathryn Allenby, Elli Robinson, Georgia Davies, Emer Doyle, Jane Kilpatrick, Lauren Robinson, Abbie McCullough, Harry Farson, Eunan Quinn, Alex Donnelly,Caolan Quinn Joel Milligan, Scott Donnelly, Michael Rafferty, Daniel Chambers

Endeavour wards were presented to Christopher Morrow, Ryan Armstrong, Aaron Brown, Rebecca Pinkerton, Charlotte Campbell, Charlotte Farson, Caitlin Kearney, Lauren Lyttle whom have shown continuous commitment throughout the season.

Coach Lane awards were presented to swimmers whom the coaches thought showed good attitude to training and were as follow; Ben Farson, Jennifer Morrow,Lucy Allen, Sam Burke, Helen Sinton, Hannah Hubert, James Whan, Erin Burke, Cameron McDonald, Harry Farson, Patrick McNiff, Kathryn Allenby, Ross Johnston, Emma McElderry, James McKee, Rachel allenby, Jamie Wilson, Zoe Kilpatrick, Aidin Quinn, Eimear McMullan

Tokens were presented to swimmers whom obtained club achievement times over the last year and they were Allce Nixon, Emer Doyle, Poppy Robinson, Jodi Doyle, Elli robinson, Lauren Robinson, Abbie McCullough Olivia Knox, Ellie Purdy, Kathryn Allenby, Jane Kilpatrick Graham Stevenson, Conor Morgan, Kealan McCambridge, Scott Donnelly Patrick McNiff Patrick Morgan and Daniel Chambers.

Club Record breakers were Jenny Wilson in the 50m Backstroke and 100 IM, Allyce Nixon in the 50m Breaststroke, Megan McKenna in the 50m Butterfly and 50m Freestyle. Cameron McDonald in the 50m Backstroke, 50m Breaststroke, and 100m IM, Patrick Morgan in the 50m Butterfly and 50m Freestyle.

Cameron McDonald, Patrick Morgan and Graham Stevenson were awarded for swimming under one minute in their 100m Freestyle during the past year

Last but not least the Committee cup is presented to a swimmer who has contributed most to the club during the last year for attitude, attendance, performance and commitment. The committee was proud to present Michael Rafferty with the trophy.

John thanked Lawrence for presenting the prizes and wished him great success in the forthcoming Olympics and all the swimmers and parents who attended in making it a most enjoyable night.