Making a splash in Ashburton
Some of the South Island’s top young swimmers were in Ashburton at the weekend, for the annual Ashburton Splash Swim Meet.
Held at the EA Networks Centre aquatic centre, the Ashburton Splash was formerly the Easter Splash Swim Meet – a name given to it as last year it was held a week before Easter. But an increasingly busy swimming calendar meant the swim meet had to be moved, and renamed.
The meet attracted around 250 swimmers from throughout Canterbury – from Rangiora to Timaru – and within that field was a strong contingent of 29 young swimmers from the Jennian Homes Ashburton Swim Team, who competed over the two days under the ever watchful eye of their head coach Shane Jones.
It was a good weekend for the young Ashburton swimmers too, with many recording new personal bests which set them up well for the busy winter season ahead.
The Ashburton Splash was the first swim meet back for the season after a short three week break in the lead-up to winter, and it’s the perfect meet to try and perfect technique and get back into race mode, Ashburton Swim Team publicity officer Toni King said.
The Ashburton Splash is a growing event too, with the 250 entries this year well up on last year’s 225, and within that field there was plenty of talent on display.
Potential Olympians of the future took to the pool, including Lincoln’s Hannah Bates, who has just been selected to attend the Commonwealth Youth Games in the Bahamas in July.
The Selwyn Swim Club member took to the water fresh from a successful first overseas experience representing New Zealand at the Australian Age Group Championships in Brisbane, from which the 15-year-old came home with a gold and silver medal to show for her efforts.
Also in action was Ashburton’s Bree Middleton, who has just been named in the New Zealand national swimming development squad for 2017-2018
King said the meet went well, although the computer system crashed so all times had to be put in the system manually, and as a result not all medals had been handed out yet.
Medals would be sent out to club secretaries, and the computer system is being worked on to ensure the problem doesn’t occur again.
Ashburton Swim Team member Bailey Tait at the completion of one of the races.