42 Hemel swimmers competed at the Luton Winter Development Meet in what was the last chance to gain or improve qualifying times for the 2016 Herts County Championships. There were 26 first places including an impressive six from six swims for Grace Cawley, 40 second and thirds and 77 personal best times out of 205 swims. 8 new county qualifying times were achieved, a further 18 were improved, and 6 new regional qualifying times were achieved including a first ever regional time for Keelin McKenna. Five new age group Club records were set, two by Max Jelfs (200 IM and 200 fly), one by Leanne Abrey (400 IM), one by Holly Robinson (100 free) and one by Millie Anderton breaking one of the oldest records on the books set in 2002 (50 back).
Other than Grace there were golds for Millie Anderton (50 back), Cameron Clark (200 back), Joe Coldwell (100 back), Ben Davies (50 fly), Elliott Davies (200 breast), Jonny Farrow (200 back, 50 and 100 free), Alice Fender (100 back), Max Jelfs (400 free), Dylan Kennell (400 IM), Keelin McKenna (50 and 100 back), Shona McKenna (50 and 200 back), Luke Pestaille (100 back), Holly Robinson (100 free) and Paige Wilding (50 breast and 50 free).
Special mention should be made of Dylan Kennell, Freya McDonagh, Svetlana Nanda and Justin Patrick – all swimming in their first open competitions away from Hemel. Dylan, Freya and Justin all set PB’s in all of their races and in addition to Dylan’s gold in the 400 IM Freya came away with two silvers.
Other swimmers who medalled were Leanne Abrey, Izzy Anderton, Lewis Clark, Pippa Croucher, Ellen Fender, Mille Herbert, Charlotte Hingston, Kyle Holmes, Manas Kubal, Tilly Stratford, Jess Walters, and Nathan Whiting.