The recent Bank Holiday weekend gave swimmers from Banbridge ASC the opportunity to feast their eyes on the stunning new 50m facility at the Aurora Complex, Bangor for the inaugural Ulster Long Course Championships.
Over the weekend 37 medals were awarded - 14 gold, five silver and 18 bronze.
Sophie Mount started proceedings off on the Friday evening with a super swim in the 800m free, swimming a time of 12.27.31. She narrowly missed out on a medal but took bronze on Saturday with a time of 2.46.63 in her 200 free.
Saturday morning saw Kate Allenby and Poppy Robinson taking to the blocks for the 400IM. Kate took bronze in a time of 6.15.50, whilst Poppy won gold in 5.50.84. In the boys’ event Patrick McNiff won bronze in 5.40.30.
Throughout the age groups the 100m fly added significantly to the medal haul. Jenny Wilson won gold in 1.09.81, as did Julia Knox in the 10 year old age group, her time being 1.29.62 . Big sister, Olivia, took bronze in 1.21.92. Ellie Robinson narrowly missed out on a medal in this event, despite a super swim in a time of 1.22.11. The 50 fly gave a silver medal to Jenny Wilson with Poppy, Olivia and Kate winning bronze medals.
Nicky Galloway swam amazing backstroke races as usual, winning gold in both the 50 and 100 events in times of 28.41 and 1.01.98 respectively. Emma McElderry took silver in her 50m back in 39. 50 and Niall McDowell won bronze for his efforts in 50 back with a time of 36.00. The medal tally in the backstroke events was completed with Jenny and Olivia both being awarded bronze medals, Olivia for 200 and Jenny for 100.
Allyce Nixon, the Queen of breaststroke, won gold in a time of 1.24.93 in the 100. Becki Pinkerton also scooped gold in her age group in 1.44.15, also taking silver in a time of 3.45.40. Brother, William, a magnificent breaststroker, claimed gold in both the 100 and 200 in times of 1.32.28 and 3.17.40 respectively. Patrick McNiff won bronze in the 200 in 3.06.07 and narrowly missed out in a medal in the 100.
Harry Dougan won bronze medals in both his breaststroke events, swimming the 100 in 1.39.45 and the 200 in 3.38.74. Ellie Purdy swam confident breaststroke races and for her efforts took bronze in the 100 in a time of 1.27.16 and silver in the 50 in 39.67. Poppy also won silver in the 50 m event in 39.77.
Special mention goes to Charlotte Campbell and Christopher Morrow, who narrowly missed out on medals in the 100m, but more importantly secured the times they needed for Irish Division 2.
Ruby McNiff and Jessica Robinson, who were experiencing the vastness of a 50m format for the first time, both won medals in the freestyle events. In the 100 freestyle Ruby came second with a time of 1.16.24 and Jessica third in 1.25.08.
It was a good day in this age group for BASC with Lauren Armstrong, scooping the gold medal, just ahead of Ruby in 1.16.07. Lauren also took bronze in 400 free with a time of 5.53.34.In the 200 free there were medals for Jenny Wilson, who claimed gold in 2.20.91 and for Julia Knox, who came third in 2.49.07. Jenny’s medal tally was completed with gold in her 50 free, her time on the clock being 29.41. Ruby was also delighted to win her 1st gold medal in this event, recording a time of 35.66. Ellie Purdy took bronze in this event with a time of 30.88.