Banbridge clinch Towns League title

Banbridge Amateur Swimming Club have won the Provincial Town League.

Bann sealed their league victory with a 617-527 win over Newry & Mourne to top the division that also includes Larne, Templemore and Dungannon.

To start with in the title clinching gala, the Group A girls won their medley relay. Aidin Quinn swam the backstroke with a strong lead. Julia Knox flew in next with a super breaststroke and increased the lead. Zoe Kilpatrick gave her all in butterfly and Ruby McNiff took them home with a tremendously smooth lead in front-crawl to win the first event of the night.

The Group A girls continued to shine and Julia came first in breaststroke, fly, frontcrawl and IM. Ruby, while quietly nursing an injury, still excelled and came first in backstroke, second in breaststroke, frontcrawl and IM and third in fly. Zoe came second in fly and third in IM. Aidin came third in backstroke and breaststroke.

Kathryn McGrath came fourth in frontcrawl and Sorcha Boersma came fifth in backstroke. Both Rachel Allenby and Elinor Bradley helped secure points for their teams. Aidin, Zoe, Julia and Ruby also won their freestyle relay with a fine performance to end their successful night.

For the Group A Boys, Dawson Patterson, Sam Johnston, Adam Wilson and Ryan Bigley secured their first win of the night with their medley relay. Ryan went on to win backstroke and IM and Dawson swam well with a second in backstroke and IM, third in fly and fourth in front-crawl. Sam brought in three third positions in breaststroke, frontcrawl and IM. Adam swam a fabulous butterfly while Daniel Brown came in third in backstroke. Taylor Hill swam a fast breaststroke and came fifth, Niall McKeown came fifth in fly and James McKee came sixth in frontcrawl. Sam, Niall, Dawson and Ryan won their freestyle relay to polish off their final performance of the night.

The Group B girls had quite a challenge on their hands as there were several strong swimmers on the N&M team. Rebecca Pinkerton came in second in fly and IM and third in breaststroke. Sophie Mount came second in frontcrawl, third in fly and fourth in IM and backstroke. Jessica Robinson came second in breaststroke and sixth in backstroke. Ellie Wright came fifth in frontcrawl and IM and Caitlin Kearney was sixth in breaststroke. Charlotte Campbell and Emma McElderry swam with Caitlin and Jessica to win an exciting freestyle relay. What a finish, Caitlin!

The Group B boys had fierce competition when their turn came round but they pushed hard and secured first in both medley and freestyle relays. Harry Farson was first in IM, second in fly, third in frontcrawl and fourth in backstroke. William swam into first place in breaststroke with an excellent time, third in backstroke and IM and fifth in fly. Christopher was second in both breaststroke and frontcrawl and Harry Dougan was fifth in both breaststroke and IM. James Whan was fourth in fly and Patrick Doyle was fifth in frontcrawl. Ryan Armstrong was fifth in backcrawl. Declan McKeown swam in both relays.

Group C girls won every relay and took every individual event but one but they achieved 2nd, 3rd and 4th in backstroke. Olivia Knox, Jodi Doyle, Kate Allenby and Hannah Beattie swam an excellent medley relay. Olivia, Hannah, Elli Robinson and Kate swam a superb freestyle relay. Kate was on top form, winning breaststroke, fly and IM. Elli achieved second in fly and frontcrawl and third in backstroke. Jodi was going well with a second in breaststroke and third in IM. Hannah was in second position in backstroke and third in frontcrawl. Olivia bagged third in frontcrawl, fourth in backstroke and fly and fifth in IM. Emma McElderry came fourth in breaststroke and swam in the relays as did Charlotte Campbell.

For the Group C boys, brothers Caolan and Eunan Quinn teamed up with Alex Donnelly and Patrick McNiff to challenge the competition. They were just pipped at the post in both relays but had more success in the individual events. Caolan won the front crawl in an excellent time and came in a strong second in fly. He also achieved third in IM. Eunan came third in breaststroke challenging some very tall Newry lads. He also achieved sixth in frontcrawl and IM. Patrick brought in four fourth places in backstroke, breaststroke, fly and IM. Alex pushed hard and came in fifth in backstroke, fly, frontcrawl and sixth in breaststroke. Aaron Brown also came sixth in backstroke.

The Group D girls were a power to be reckoned with. They won both relays and came in first in all but the backstroke events. The team consisted of Jenny Wilson, Megan McKenna, Poppy Robinson, Anna Smith, Lauren Robinson, Zoe Smyth and Rachel Smyth. Jenny, Poppy, Rachel and Megan won the medley relay and Jenny, Zoe, Poppy and Megan won the freestyle relay. Jenny was in superb form winning IM and securing second position in backstroke, breaststroke and frontcrawl . Megan also gave her all with a win in frontcrawl, second in fly and third in both backstroke and IM. Poppy, the youngest on this team, gave a wonderful performance coming in first in breaststroke and second in IM. Rachel won her fly with a superb time. Her sister Zoe was fifth in backcrawl. Finally, Lauren came fifth in breaststroke and frontcrawl.

The last group of boys was the mighty Group D boys featuring Nicky Galloway, Cameron McDonald, Scott Donnelly, Michael Mitchel and Niall McDowell. Nicky, Scott, Michael and Cameron won the medley relay and Niall, Cameron, Michael and Nicky won the freestyle relay by a huge margin. Nicky was in a great position as he won all five individual events as well as being in both winning relay teams. Cameron made an excellent contribution with his second in IM, third in backstroke and breaststroke and 4th in fly. Michael is another great swimmer and showed his true form with 2nd in fly and frontcrawl and 4th in backstroke. Scott achieved 5th in breaststroke and sixth in IM. Niall, the youngest in this group swam a fast frontcrawl and came sixth.

Banbridge won six of eight medley relays and seven of eight freestyle relays. Therein lay the key to othe victory.

The PTL finishes its season with PTL time trials on the 8th March in Larne and individual finals in Ballymena on 12th April.