Swimmers end year on a high
A total of nine County Sligo Swimming Club athletes recently competed at the Irish National Short Course Championships and their excellent performances brought an array of medals and PBs back to the Northwest.
The Championships were held at the Lagan Valley Leisureplex in Lisburn and the local swimmers did not disappoint, returning to Sligo with two national medals and lots of personal bests (PBs) across the four days of this open competition.
Danielle Farrell (15) claimed a bronze in the 1500m freestyle in 17:58.40, a PB of almost 7 seconds. Farrell also swam in two B finals, the 400m freestyle where she finished in 3rd place in 4:28.51, a 6.56 second PB, and the 200m freestyle where she also finished in 3rd position.
The club had two swimmers competing for both the National Centre Limerick (NCL) and Sligo Swimming Club. These were UL students Ronan Anderson and Jade Murphy. For the second year in a row, Anderson medalled at the SC Nationals. This year he won bronze in the 100m backstroke in a time of 56.60 and also finished in 6th place in the 200m IM final in 2:03.00. Anderson finished just outside the medals in the 400m IM final, in 4th position. He also swam a great race in the final of the 200m backstroke and was in contention for a medal right up until the last 50m of the race, however he eventually finished in 5th place in a fast time of 2:05.94. The other NCL/Sligo swimmer, Jade Murphy, swam in the three breaststroke events, finishing in 2nd place in the B final of the 100m breaststroke and in 7th place in the B final of the 50m. On the final day of the meet Murphy qualified for the A final of the 200m breaststroke in a great time of 2:41.37, but withdrew from the evening final.
Carrie McDaid (16) was competing at her fifth Irish SC Championships and her highlight this year came in the 100m IM where she finished 5th in the B final in 1:08.64. She couldn’t repeat her performance from the heats in the morning when she swam a time of 1:08.05, a 0.51 second PB. McDaid also competed in the 50m breaststroke, finishing 24th overall.
Fifteen-year-old Wiktoria Weinert competed in 7 events. Her best performance came in the 200m IM where she achieved a 0.91 second PB to finish in 2:36.53. She also attained a PB in the 200m breaststroke, swimming a time of 2:49.97 to finish in 23rd position.
This year County Sligo Swimming Club had four swimmers competing for the first time at the Irish National SC Championships. These were thirteen year olds Ronan Kilcoyne and Killian Langton, and siblings Alice McPartlan (15) and Paddy McPartlan (16). All four swimmers equipped themselves very well at this major national competition. Ronan Kilcoyne who has been having a fantastic run of form recently competed in six individual events, the highlight of which was his performance in the 1500m freestyle where the 13-year-old finished a fantastic 8th place overall in a time of 16:55.68, a 25.30 second PB. Kilcoyne also achieved great PBs in all of his other events, and was the fastest 13-year-old in every event he competed in. This competition was a superb learning experience for the young swimmer. Killian Langton raced in the 200m breaststroke and the youngster swam a great time of 2:47.15, a 1.12 second PB.
Paddy McPartlan was another swimmer who got PBs in all five of his events. He was particularly impressive in both the 100m freestyle swimming a time of 57.82, a 1.28 second PB and 100m IM (1:06.43), a 1.52 second PB. McPartlan’s other PBs came in the 50m freestyle, 50m fly and 100m fly. Alice McPartlan put in a great performance in the 200m backstroke with a time of 2:33.49.
County Sligo Swimming Club also competed in one relay event, the Mixed 200m Medley Relay, where the team comprising Carrie McDaid (50m Back), Ronan Anderson (50m Breast), Ronan Kilcoyne (50m Fly) and Danielle Farrell (50m Free) swam a time of 1:57.90 to finish in 12th position from 23 teams.
Sligo head coach Eduardo Santos was very pleased with the performances at one of the premier events in the Irish swimming calendar. Coach Eduardo said that Sligo Swimming Club are continuing to perform extremely well at National level, being one of just seven of the sixteen Connacht swimming clubs to reach the podium at the Irish SC Nationals, with the two medals won by Danielle Farrell and Ronan Anderson. He also thanked all the swimmers, parents, coaches and committee members for all their support to the club and said he was really looking forward to the upcoming long course season. Next up for Sligo swimmers is the Leinster Open Qualifying Long Course Gala in the NAC, from January 18-20th.
Danielle Farrell, Wiktoria Weinert & Alice McPartlan.
Ronan Kilcoyne and Paddy McPartlan.
Sligo SC club captains Paddy McPartlan and Carrie McDaid.
Killian Langton & Wiktoria Weinert.
Carrie McDaid & Wiktoria Weinert.