One minute it feels like a marathon – the next minute you’re almost at the end. Sport is funny like that. Just as well we won a few more medals today to keep the momentum up. Here’s what happened on the final day of #SNAGS2019.
The final morning at #SNAGS2019 was one of our busiest. First up were Matthew Garrity and Thomas Cannon in the 200m IM. Matthew qualified comfortably for the final in 2nd place, just outside his PB. Thomas went next with a great swim to finish 13th ahead of his 15th place seeding. Sadly, it wasn’t quite enough to secure a place in the finals.
Next we were back to our breaststroke ladies, Aimee Watson and Molly Cannon in the 100m event. Both swam well, with Aimee securing the fastest qualification for the evening final. Molly swam a PB and finished in 11th place as first reserve for the final. Yet again, it was a wait to see if she would get to swim it, and she got her chance! More on that later…
Brother Thomas was up next in the 50m backstroke heats. Just like Molly, Thomas swam a PB to finish as 1st reserve, but unfortunately he didn’t get to swim again. Despite this disappointment, Thomas has had an excellent competition and should be very proud of what’s he’s achieved.
Next, Aimee was back in the pool again for the 50m butterfly, doing well to qualify for the final in 7th place. Matthew was back in the action as well, swimming the 800m freestyle. The tough distance event can really take it out of swimmers, but as 2nd seed, Matthew was in with a good chance of a medal. It was a tough race, but Matthew swam extremely well to set a new PB and claim his silver medal. 4 medals won by Matthew, and still the evening finals to come!
Last race of the morning was the 14-16 girls 4 x 200m freestyle relay. The team of Molly, Anna McClafferty, Ashleigh Blyth and Aimee swam a brilliant PB to move up to 29th place from their 34th place seeding. Well done girls.
It was another quiet afternoon, with just the 11-13 boys relay team competing in the 4 x 100m medley relay. Oliver Patton, Luke Garrity, Lewis Gray and Alistair Currie had a fabulous swim, setting a new PB and finishing 11th ahead of their 13th place seeding. Well done boys.
The first final of the night was Matthew in the 200m IM. It was a repeat of the 400m event, with Matthew going up against Pietro Ubertalli. Having competed so well in the 800m freestyle earlier, there were a few nerves around whether Matthew would have enough energy left to be competitive in the race. It started out as expected, with Matthew holding 3rd place on the butterfly leg, but losing ground on the backstroke. He had quite a gap to bridge for the breaststroke, but he did it in style, not only moving up to 2nd place, but challenging for 1st. It was neck and neck down the final 50m, and in the end Matthew was beaten by just 0.03 seconds. He is still crowned Scottish champion as the fastest finishing Scot, and you will not see a more exciting finish to a 200m IM swim this year. Amazing stuff.
It was the girls on the 100m breaststroke next, with Molly getting her place in the final as hoped. In a way, the pressure was off Molly, and she could just enjoy the race. No such luck for Aimee however. As fastest qualifier, she was the one to beat. A close start to the race saw Aimee just edge ahead slightly. She built a small lead down the first 50m, and executed a good turn to remain in the lead. But the pressure was relentless and with every stroke the winning margin narrowed. Our girl was not to be beaten though, and kept everyone else at bay to claim her second Scottish champion title of the competition. Amazing Aimee!
In the same race, Molly was able to swim it her way in the outside lane, and powered home to another PB and an 8th place finish: not a bad effort from 1st reserve! Like brother Thomas, Molly has been outstanding in this competition and should be full of confidence for the rest of the season.
The last final of #SNAGS2019 was upon us, and it was only fitting that with Matthew starting the night, Aimee was the one to end it. She swam in the 50m butterfly final and finished just outside her best time in 7th place.
And like that, we are done. Every race has been swum and we are all completely drained. We’ve had disappointment and elation alike, but overall, #SNAGS2019 has exceeded every expectation. We’re going to rest and reflect on what we’ve achieved and come back with some words of wisdom in the next couple of days.
If you’ve read this far and you’ve enjoyed being part of the journey, please let your friends know about us. We’re looking to grow the club with new members, and you never know who the next Matthew and Aimee might be. It might just be your child…
But tonight is for those very special people who have given us some amazing memories over the last five days. Our SNAGS class of 2019: Matthew, Aimee, Thomas, Molly, Aaron, Jay, Kian, Oliver, Lewis, Ashleigh, Anna, Adam, Luke, Alistair and Cammi. Our amazing coaches: Shirley, Kyara, Andrew and Sarah. Our amazing mums and dads and grandparents and brothers and sisters. And the amazing extended family that is our club. Until next year!