The Swim England North-East Region Short Course (25m) Championships, commonly known as NERs, were held at Ponds Forge International Sports Centre in Sheffield on 5&6 November 2022. The 50m pool was split into two halves and the Open and Age Group events ran concurrently.
DASC had 14 swimmers from Top, A1 and A2 squads, taking part in 56 different events over the course of the weekend. Coaches Allison Matthias and Johnson Bache were poolside for the weekend. Lucy Armstrong attended on behalf of DASC as a Technical Official.
It was great to see so many PB swims achieved during the course of a very long weekend
NER Age Group Championships
All the Age Group events were HDW (Heat Declared Winner), enabling swimmers to compete in multiple events over the weekend. Boys aged 11-14 and Girls aged 11-13 competed in single year age bands. The Championships were greatly oversubscribed, and unfortunately several DASC (and other) entries were rejected in order for SENE to deliver the event.
DASC was represented by 9 youngsters in 42 events, and finished the Championships with fantastic statistics of 10 medals, another 11 Top 10 finishes and 25 PB swims, some of them by large margins.
Seth Farmer, Sebastien Mason and Tristan Wheeler competed at NER level for the first time, with Sebastien in his first year of being eligible by age. They are to be congratulated for breaking through to step up to race against the best swimmers from the North-East Region.
Harry Whitfield (12)had a superb weekend. He swam in 10 events, on all strokes except Backstroke, and produced a PB in every one of them. He won Gold in 100m IM, showing his versatility across all strokes, 2 Silvers in 200m and 400m Freestyle and 3 Bronzes in 50m and 100m Freestyle and 200m IM, with 4th and 5th places in 100m and 200m Butterfly.
Lucy Oliver (13) also had a very busy and successful weekend racing on all but one stroke. She competed in 10 events and, apart from one very near miss, recorded PBs in all. Arguably her best performance came in winning Gold in the 200m Butterfly, with a time less than 0.3 seconds outside the qualifying standard for the SE National Winter Championships. She also won 2 Silvers in 50m Freestyle and 100m Butterfly and a Bronze in 100m IM, narrowly missed out on a medal on 100m and 200m Freestyle, and placed in the Top 10 in 50m Backstroke, 50m Butterfly and 200m IM.
Hugo Douglas-Reeves (14) produced excellent PBs in all 3 Breaststroke events finishing 5th in 50m and 7th in 100m. Alex Morton (14) was busy in 5 events, clocking up PBs in all of them and finishing 7th in 100m Butterfly. Sebastien Mason (11) came 10th in 100m Butterfly with a PB in it and also in 50m Butterfly. Seth Farmer (14) was on good form with PBs in 200m Freestyle and Backstroke and Ben Matthias (14) swam best times on 50m and 200m Backstroke. Tristan Wheeler (12) consolidated the recent rapid progress he has been making on 100m Freestyle and Butterfly. April Mansfield (12) swam PBs on all 3 of her events and continues to make great progress.
NER Open Championships
This year the Open Championships were for ages 16&under and 17&over. It is a big step up from the age group to the open competition just to make the qualifying times. Heats of events were swum in the morning sessions and finals in the afternoon sessions, except for 800m and 1500m Freestyle which were Heat Declared Winner events.
6 Top Squad swimmers competed in 14 events and recorded a great total of 7 PB swims.
Niamh Kay (15) went under 35 seconds for the first time on 50m Breaststroke to qualify for the final where she came 6th. Emily Burrell (16) sprinted her way to 3 PBs in 4 events and was close to making the 50m Breaststroke final. Emma Carter (14) continued to make inroads into her 50m Freestyle PB. Sam Beukenholdt (16) broke the 25 second barrier on 50m Freestyle for the first time. Lewis Kestle (15) produced a PB on 50m Backstroke inching closer to breaking 30 seconds. Max Butler (18), swimming for the first time at NER level, was very close to his PBs on 50m Butterfly and 100m Individual Medley.
Well done to all DASC swimmers on their achievements.
Report by J Teague Nov 2022