Bianca and Hamish lead the way at Nationals
COMING on top of our recent Dubbo Photo News story on Angus Mcdonald’s ascension to the crown as Australia’s fastest Under-17s 100-metre swimmer, comes news of two other Dubbo City Swimtech members who competed at the Meet in Adelaide.
Bianca Fuller and Hamish Wood are the first locals for a number of years to swim at the highest level event in Australia.
Coach Dennis Valentine also travelled to Adelaide to support his swimmers and be part of this high-level swim meet.
Bianca shares her thoughts on the experience: “I was so excited to reach three Australian Age qualifying times – 200m Individual Medley (IM), 100m breaststroke and the 200m breaststroke. I was one if the youngest in my age group, having only turned 14 in February. The experience of racing against the top 14-year-old girls in Australia was amazing and surreal,” Bianca told Dubbo Photo News.
“I performed well, doing personal bests (PB’S) in all of my events. My best performance of the meet was the 200m breaststroke. Going into the race I was ranked 35th, but after dropping over 4 seconds off my PB, I came out ranked 18th!
“It was such an amazing feeling to think I came in the top 20 in Australia.”
Bianca was quick to point out it was a team effort.
“My coach Dennis Valentine helped me to achieve the best I could. The South Australia aquatic facility was so different and unfamiliar but amazing at the same time. We even got our own personal athlete and coach passes to enter the pool. It is just like what you see on TV, with the commentating, live streaming, big crowds and loud music between races,” Bianca said, a little overwhelmed.
“The warmup and cool down pool was complete chaos! I thought that there were lots of swimmers at the Sydney SOPAC facility until I saw this. There is barely enough room to swim – fins here, kick boards there, arms here, legs there and splashing everywhere,” she laughed.
“Being a kid from the bush, this opportunity couldn’t get much better. Apart from the chaotic warm up and cool down pool, it is definitely an experience to remember.
“Swimming at Nationals has helped me reach goals and set new ones for the 2019/2020 season. It has made me want to keep training hard for the upcoming NSW All Schools competition at Homebush this month,” Bianca added.
Hamish swam in the draining 400 metres freestyle.
“Nationals was unlike anywhere I had swum before with accreditation passes to get into the pool! Our races were being filmed with commentary and we were marshalled just like professionals at the big Games you see on TV,” he told Dubbo
“Knowing that I was swimming with the people who are the best at what they do, and the next National and even Olympic champions, was great to experience.”
With the Dubbo RSL Pool expected to be open next month, our young champions Bianca, Hamish and others will go into next season swimfit for another attack on the Nationals!
Coach Dennis Valentine with Bianca Fuller and Hamish Wood.