More than 200 swimmers took part in HHSC’s annual Sprint Club Championships over the last three Sundays, competing in over 1,000 individual races.
Some of the age groups were dominated by one swimmer. It can be frustrating to be a nine year-old girl or boy if your name isn’t either Megan Pirrie or Thushira Kumerage. Both swimmers swept the board with a win in every single event. Paige Ford and Amanda Gower took turns at second place to Megan, along with Chloe Purkis. Ben Garratt managed some great swims to come runner-up in all his races to Thushira.
At the more senior end of the club, Pam Ware ran away with all the trophies in the 25-and-over category.
In the 8 year boys, Max Jelfs almost had everything his way with wins in the 25m freestyle, backstroke and butterfly. But Teddy Western succeeded in stealing the gold in the 25m breaststroke.
In other age groups the spoils were spread out more widely. In the 8 year girls, Hannah Goates, Shaminah Sherwani-Keeling, Emmy Bier-Allen and Alice Fender won one gold each.
The 10 year girls’ wins were split two ways, with Aimee Abrey taking the trophy for the 100 and 50m freestyle, 50m backstroke and 50m butterfly whilst Lucy Hutchins took the 50m breaststroke, 100m butterfly, backstroke and breaststroke and IM.
Paige Wilding, Freya Mayhew and Gabi Cole were engaged in a contest for the top three places in the 11 year girls. It was Paige Wilding who came off top with seven trophies, Freya Mahew taking the 100m freestyle and Gabi Cole winning the 50m breaststroke. Becky Farrow and Molly McCloughin muscled in on the party with thirds in the 50m and 100m butterfly and 100m breaststroke for Farrow and 50m and 100m backstroke for McCloughin.
Victoria Fisher and Kelsey Doyle vied for first place all the way through the championships in the 12/13 girls, with Victoria taking both freestyle and backstroke races, the 50m butterfly and the IM and Kelsey coming up top in both breaststroke races and the 100m butterfly. Hannah Bagley took second spot in the 100m butterfly.
The 14/15 girls events were split between Katie McClaren (50m backstroke, freestyle, butterfly and 100m IM) and Emma Gower (50m and 100m breaststroke, 100m backstroke) and Lois Moore (100m freestyle and butterfly).
In the 16-24 girls, Emma Jolie took home all the golds apart from the 50m and 100m backstroke and the 100m IM, which went to Natalie Piggott.
In the 10 year boys Kyle Holmes was close to a clean sweep. He won all his events apart from the 100m freestyle and backstroke which both went to Jonty Bier-Allen.
Louis Dunham was a dominant force in the 11 years’ boys, giving away only two events: the 50m and 100m breaststroke, which went to Carl Prince and Lewis Beardsworth respectively.
For the 12/13 boys, Tom Sherriff won most of his events, although Conrad Bier-Allen took the 50m and 100m butterfly and 100m backstroke, with Freddie Woodcock picking up the 100m breaststroke title.
Harrison Robb (100m freestyle, 100m IM, 100m backstroke) Jamie Keevill (50m and 100m breaststroke and freestyles) and Sam Pigott (100m butterfly and 50m backstroke), shared the spoils in the 14/15 age group. Tim Boardman won the 50m butterfly. Lawrence Hall put in some great PBs, including the 100m freestyle in which he missed out on first place by a mere one hundredth of a second.
Tom Osborn had it all his own way in the 16-24 age group, winning every event, with one exception in the 50m butterfly which went to Liam Barnett.
Dave Pirrie, in the 25-and-overs, wasn’t quite as successful as his 9-year old daughter Megan. He succeeded in winning most events, surrendering the 50m backstroke and 100m IM to James McFarlane, and the 100m butterfly to an on-form Mark Ayres.
Last but by no means least, the youngest competitors, the 7-and-unders, deserve a special mention. Jessica Hubbard took the girls’ 25m freestyle and butterfly, with another Pirrie, Megan’s little sister, Sian, clinching the 25m breaststroke at only 6 years’ old, and Shona McKenna taking the backstroke.
In the boys, it was Jessica Hubbard’s twin, Ben, who took the 25m freestyle, backstroke and butterfly with 6 year-old Harri Mills lifting the 25m breaststroke in his championships debut.
Harri Mills was one of 17 swimmers to break a club record at the Champs. 23 records fell in total. See separate news article for full details.