The British swimming championships took place in Edinburgh from the 1st to 4th March. Mid Sussex Marlins had a record 5 swimmers qualify for the championships which are the main event on the British swimming calendar and often act as World /Olympic or European trials (in relevant years) as well as acting as the selection event for World, European and youth Olympic junior championship teams.
The ‘Beast from the East’ storm made travelling to Edinburgh extremely difficult, with a red warning directly over the area. Many flights were cancelled which meant one of our qualifiers (Robin Boyden) and our coach (Stephen Murphy) were unable to attend the event despite numerous efforts to re book flights. Fortunately four of our swimmers made it and braved the extreme conditions to come away with some fantastic performances.
Highlights form the events included two British junior finals for Sophie Maguire who placed 5th only 2 tenths of a second outside of the bronze medal in the 50m backstroke and 8th in the 200m backstroke! Sophie Shaw put in some strong swims in her events and was not far off the junior finals places with a whole year to go as a junior. Sophie also had the honour of warming up in the same lane as Olympic and World Champion Adam Peaty on the pre event warm up day! Charlotte Johnson contested the 800m and 1500m freestyle events with Charlotte swimming the 1500m free for the first time long course came away 2nd best in her age group with a new open club record by over a second. Rachael Bowen swam the 50m fly against an international field with 4 swimmers in her heat from the Netherlands and the Irish record holder beside her.
All the girls along with their team mates will now be looking to put in some solid training and racing in the national qualifying window which is now open from 1st March till the end of May. We will hope to see a record number of Mid Sussex swimmers qualifying for the Summer championships this year!
Coach Steve Murphy outlined the swimmers’ achievements at the champs: “We are extremely proud of the swimmers’ performances and conduct at the Championships. The girls had to contest with extreme weather, unfamiliar circumstances and performed extremely well at the highest level British swimming has to offer domestically. The swimmers supported each other fantastically and showed their ability to cope with any situation thrown at them and effectively work from their race plans and race routines. The experience gained here will serve them well moving forward and help them, and their team mates, produce results further down the line.”