Following some superb individual performances at Norfolk County Championships, West Norfolk SC’s swimmers captured the prestigious Relay Gala title recently.
Coach Sarah Vanderloo was able to take ‘A’, B’ and ‘C’ teams to compete at UEA in Norwich, thus giving many inexperienced swimmers a chance to taste top level relay competition. A total of 74 swimmers represented WNSC, ranging in age from nine to 31 years, and opposition was stern.
Relay swimming lends itself to exciting viewing, and there was a highly charged atmosphere in the 50 metre pool. Nine-year-old Millie Laws had a baptism of fire in her first gala for the club, tackling her races with great determination. Josh Gray made a welcome return on a weekend break from university studies, along with long time team-mate Alex Murray.
In the boys 11/12 yrs freestyle, Alex Hall, Iasonas Emmanouel, Freddie Laws and Robert Addis swam superbly to take West Norfolk’s first win. Robert then joined forces with Zachariah Oglesby, Luke Bryan and Jake Lammas to secure victory in the 13/14 yrs freestyle.
It was a great achievement for West Norfolk to then win both the Mens’ and Womens’ Junior freestyle relays. The combined speed of Archie Holman, Zack Campbell-Maughan, and new members Oliver Newton and Morgan Reed, here showed their dominance. For the Women, Abbie Whiting, Hannah Brown, Sophie Empson and Elise Sorrell shone to take maximum points.
The Open Mens’ and Womens’ freestyle trophies also went to West. Sparkling swims from Elliot Legg, Gray, Ryan Sykes and Nathan Wells; while Sorrell and Whiting teamed up with new member Siobhan Casey, and Vanderloo.
The evening produced many personal bests, strong performances by all three WNSC teams, and camaraderie showed throughout the night, to take the trophy back to St James Pool.
Final result: WNSC 139 points, 2 Norwich Swan 131, 3 UEA 126, 4 Dereham 93, 5 N N Vikings, 6 Diss 63, 7 Thetford 60.