Club pre­pares for wave of pun­ters

Pilbara News - - Front Page - Tom Zaun­mayr

The Kar­ratha Am­a­teur Swim­ming Club is pre­par­ing for one of the big­gest turnouts for the North West Open in re­cent his­tory, with more than 250 com­peti­tors from across the state com­ing to town this week­end.

Com­peti­tors are gear­ing up for a busy week­end in the Leisure­plex pool for one of the big­gest swim­ming com­pe­ti­tions in the North West.

Kar­ratha Am­a­teur Swim­ming Club’s North West Open will see 257 swim­mers across 1811 events de­scend on the Leisure­plex this week­end, the highest turnout for the event in years.

Com­peti­tors will be com­ing in from clubs in Perth, Newman, Broome, Carnar­von, Ex­mouth, Tom Price, Parabur­doo, Pan­na­won­ica, Hed­land and Wick­ham.

Ex­mouth will be field­ing the strong­est con­tin­gent with 44 swim­mers, fol­lowed by Kar­ratha (40), Tom Price (31) and Wick­ham (24).

Two swim­mers from Derby have also reg­is­tered, af­ter miss­ing out over the past few years.

Event or­gan­iser Lisa Ni­ikkula said the growth of the com­pe­ti­tion was en­cour­ag­ing.

“Our num­bers are up sig­nifi- cantly, which is fan­tas­tic for the North West re­gion,” she said.

“The club has worked hard to re- build af­ter last year and has es­tab­lished a fam­ily-friendly com­pet­i­tive at­mos­phere that is con­ta­gious.

“We have a much younger club this year, with many up and com­ing ju­niors who should be ex­cit­ing to watch.”

Ni­ikkula said Brody Ben­jamin, Sin­tra Buck, Lara Casper and Brooke Rogers were all swim­mers to watch over the week­end.

One of the se­nior swim­mers, Shaela Do­herty, will be com­pet­ing in her last Kar­ratha event af­ter se­cur­ing a swim­ming schol­ar­ship with a Queens­land-based school.

Marni Tay­lor, 14, is gear­ing up for her eighth North West Open.

“I just love the sport and the peo­ple make it re­ally en­joy­able,” she said. “(The com­pe­ti­tion) re­ally makes you want to keep swim­ming be­cause of the ex­cite­ment — ev­ery­one is here, which makes it a good chance to meet new peo­ple.

“There are a few teams which I am look­ing for­ward to see­ing in the wa­ter.”

Marni en­cour­aged res­i­dents to cheer on the lo­cal swim­mers.

Pic­ture: Tom Zaun­mayr

Kar­ratha Am­a­teur Swim­ming Club is pre­par­ing for the North West Open at the Leisure­plex.

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