Berkhamsted swimmers get the season off to a flying start
The National League campaign began with a bang for Berkhamsted Swimming Club at the Inspire Luton Sports Village on Saturday.
Missing several of their normal big hitters, the club showed their strength in depth as those who came in as replacements stepped up and performed heroically.
The coaches had a difficult task in choosing the swimmers of the night awards and finally decided to award the girls’ 12/13 squad of Ellen Northwood, Amy Pemberton, Abbie Hurst, Amy Stoker and Niamh Clarke the title for their sterling performances throughout the night.
The boys’ award went to first timer for the club, James Chennells.
First winner on the night for the club was Hurst with a PB and club best in the 100m breaststroke, and she backed this up with second in the 14/15 age group, still quicker than her previous PB.
Pemberton, meanwhile, stormed clear in the 100m freestyle for a comfortable victory in yet another PB.
Another win came for the relay squad of Tom Weston, Ollie Hurst, Tom Lyons and Jordan Northwood in the 14/15 medley race, while Northwood, Weston and Lyons teamed with Chris Nel to set new club figures in the freestyle relay as they finished second.
The 12/13 boys’ team of Chennells, Zac Patel, Ish Rahim and Mason Brand were very comfortable in closing out their freestyle relay, while the same quartet managed second in the corresponding medley relay.
Chennells got his award having set PBs in his 100m backstroke, 100m freestyle and his lead-off 50m freestyle leg.
Ellen Northwood had begun the gala by taking almost three seconds off her 200 IM time, and then also smashed her 100m butterfly PB twice.
It was a family double in the IM when Jordan was next up and took over a second off his PB for a new club age group and open record.
New club best performances were set by Izzie Soulsby in the 50m butterfly, Eli MacDonald in the 100m breaststroke, Charley Stevens in the 100m freestyle and Brand in the 100m breaststroke.
There were further PB times for Zac Patel, Jordan Northwood, Hamish MacCaig, Stoker, Weston and Pemberton.
James Corner, Marley Maidment, Jack Bowers and George Thorne teamed up to set a club record in the 9-11 200m freestyle relay, while the final club best came from Amelie Baker, Elly Matthews, Evie Watson and Souslby in the 9-11 years 200m freestyle relay.
Making up the squad which finished sixth on the night were Abbie Brown, Harriet Horwood-Jones, Elly Sansom, Jenny Atwill, Jack Filer and Sam Gray.