Bellshill bling bonanza

20 IASC swimmers took to the pool at the Bellshill Sharks Open and achieved an incredible set of results. Completing almost 100 individual swims they secured 40 top six finishes and an incredible 19 medals – 9 gold, 5 silver and 5 bronze.

Seven of those medals came from 9-year old Archie McArthur, who medalled in each of his events. Archie swam his way to five golds and two silver medals and recorded new PBs in all but one event. Competing against boys up to two years older, Archie won gold for the 50m, 100m and 200m butterfly, 100m backstroke and 200m freestyle. His silver medals came in the 100m breaststroke and 100m freestyle.

His 200m butterfly triumph was one of the most exciting races of the competition. Having led for most of the race, a strong surge from his 11-year old rival threatened his win in the final few metres, but Archie dug deep to secure his impressive win by a fraction of a second.

Fellow 9-year old Cameron Beck secured two medals and 8 PBs. Swimming in nine events, Cameron made all four finals for the 50m events in the 8-10 year old categories and won gold for the 50m backstroke and silver in the 100m butterfly. His PBs ensured he placed highly in his other events, with four more top six finishes.

Oliver Patton made it three medals and three PBs from three events when he secured gold for the 100m freestyle and two bronzes for the 50m and 200m backstroke in the 11-12 years age group. Competing in the same age category, 11-year old Luke Garrity brought home a gold for the 400m IM and a bronze for the 100m breaststroke. Luke also recorded 3 new PBs in his other events.

The final gold medal of the day came from Mirren McConnell in the 8-10 age group 100m butterfly. Despite being ill all week, Mirren still managed to record a PB to take the victory. She also gave strong performances to secure a further two top six places.

Aaron Gray had a successful competition picking up an impressive silver in the 200m butterfly and a bronze in the 50m butterfly and recording PBs in every event. Aaron also recorded another two top 6 finishes in his 15 and overs category.

With three new PBs, Ryan Cummings secured a silver in the 50m breast and a 4th and 5th place in the 100m backstroke and 200m freestyle events in the 8-10 age group. The final medallist of the day was Adam Brooks. Swimming in the 13-14 category, Adam won a bronze for his 100m backstroke and secured new PBs in three of his other events.

Outside of the medals, everyone else achieved impressive personal results with high place finishes and new PBs. 9-year old Scott Brodie continued to improve with five new PBs and six top ten finishes, including the finals of the 8-10 category 50m backstroke and breaststroke.

Ashleigh Blyth, Eve Morrison and Ben Skinner secured 4th places in the 200m IM, 100m breaststroke and the 50m backstroke respectively. Cammy Kerr also got a 5th place and a new PB in the 400m freestyle.

Four swimmers achieved 100% PBs across a number of events. Holly Beck made it seven out of seven and secured impressive top ten placings for her 200m IM and freestyle events. Darren Macleay made it four out of four and a top ten place for his 50m breaststroke. Both Alice McClafferty and Nathan Peoples recorded two PBs each, with Alice getting top 10 finishes for her 50m breaststroke and 50m freestyle and Nathan for his 100m butterfly.

Sam Sharkey, Katherine Simpson and Anna McClafferty also improved on their times in a number of different events. Sam recorded top ten finishes in the 200m freestyle and 50m breaststroke, where he also swam a PB. Anna achieved new PBs in her 100m backstroke and 100m and 200m freestyle events, while Katherine improved her times in the 50m breaststroke and 100m freestyle.

The coaching team for the competition were delighted with all of the performances – but singled out the high number of PBs, the two 200m butterfly medals and having three swimmers in the 8-10 boys 50m breaststroke final (Ryan, Cameron and Scott) as their top highlights. Having medallists and finalists from across a wide range of age groups and events shows how the club is growing and improving in strength and depth.

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