Melton Swimming Club toasted one of their most successful County Championships as they brought home their biggest-ever medal haul.
A total of 61 Melton swimmers qualified for the championships, winning 58 medals in total, consisting of 15 gold, 18 silver and 25 bronze.
There were 221 top-10 placings and more than 270 new personal best times for the club, while more than 20 swimmers achieved Midlands qualifying times for regional events in April, meeting the target coach Sam Gillespie set last September.
Head coach Tracy McGhie said: “The swimmers have been superb. They have showed great improvement in their pre-race preparation and technical skills which was a testament to their hard work in the run-up to this event.
“They have supported each other, shown great spirit and determination, and achieved so much.
“I would like to say a huge well done to all and thank-you to everyone who helped out over the three weekends of the competition – it was a great team effort.”
There were great debuts from Charlotte Byron, Jessica Tomblin, Albert Misiuda and Adam Drew, with Charlotte and Adam making finals, and Jessica winning bronze in the 100m backstroke and 100m individual medley (IM).
In the boys’ breaststroke, Benedict Pater took bronze over 50m, 100m and 200m, while Will Brighty claimed 100m bronze, and George Peberdy won gold at 50m and 100m silver. George also added a bronze in the 50m backstroke and 200 IM.
In the boys’ 16/over 50m butterfly, Melton made up five of the eight finalists – Will Graham (silver), Brighty (bronze). Sam Gillespie (4th), Sam Wilkinson (5th), and Tom Barnes (7th).
In the 15yrs final, four of the eight finalists were also Melton swimmers: Tom Rochelle (silver), Charlie Sharpe (4th), Oliver Jones (5th), and
Luke Wilkinson (7th).
Rochelle added a silver in the 50m and 100m freestyle, and Sharpe won silver in the 50m and 100m backstroke, and bronze at 200m backstroke and 50m freestyle.
In the long-distance endurance events, Ben Nutter set great pace in the 1500m freestyle, taking more than a minute off his PB to claim bronze to add to his 100m backstroke bronze.
In the sprints, Will Graham clocked superb PBs and silver medals at 50m freestyle (24.15secs), 100m freestyle (52.68), 50m butterfly (26.40), and 100m butterfly (58.33).
He also set a new best mark of 1min 00.53secs in the 100m IM, while Brighty stopped the clock at 31.48 in the 50m breaststroke and 29.00 in the 50m backstroke.
For the girls, Amy Willetts was outstanding in the 11 years age group, taking gold in nine events and a silver in the 100m backstroke.
Tia Keightly impressed with a host of gold medals in the 100m and 200m breaststroke and 100m, 200m and 400m individual medley.
She also took both the junior and senior championship trophies for the 400m IM.
Jas Burton took silver with a stunning 800m freestyle, adding to her 200m backstroke silver, and bronze in the 100m backstroke and 200m freestyle.
Issy Barnes swam to a great silver in the 50m breaststroke, gaining two places on her position in the heats, and Beth Walker claimed a silver and bronze in the 100m breaststroke and 50m fly, respectively,
At backstroke, Kate Parker took third in the 200m, while Kacey Robson was second in the 50m and third over 200m, with Ianthe Brittain third in the 100m for their respective age groups. Ianthe also won a bronze in the 100m butterfly.
Imogen Lindsey swam to an impressive third place in the 100m IM, showcasing her all-round stroke capability, and Clarice Ellingwoth battled hard for a deserved 50m breaststroke silver.