Tuesday, July 30, 2019

Coach Rafal Lechicki, Toni Dolan, Amy Bergin, Sean Donoghue, Ignat Samuchov, Sam Farrell, Caoimhe Moore, Kuba Krawczun, Lucy Brennan and Padraic Dolan

THE Irish Age Group Division 2 Championships is one of the top swim meets in the Irish calendar for young swimmers. This championship takes place in June at the University College of Limerick Sports Campus and is a Level 4 Short Course Gala, meaning the times achieved here can qualify these young swimmers for the National Short Course Championships later this year.
Laois Marlins Swimming Club had a very strong squad of swimmers attending this year, not only did it have the most qualified swimmers of any year so far, but they all achieved qualification with very competitive times.
Of the 19 swimmers who qualified 17 took part in the championship, 11 girls and six boys. Collectively and individually these young athletes achieved incredible results. The Laois Marlins squad took part in 63 individual swims achieving 45 personal bests, making 20 finals and winning a total of six national medals – two gold, one silver and three bronze.
Starting with the girls, Amy Bergin (14) had a super gala. Of her seven swims she had five amazing pbs, made four finals, 400m individual medley, 100m butterfly, 100m breast stroke and 200m breast stroke and she took the bronze medal in a very tough race in the 400m individual medley.
Lucy Brennan (14) had a total of 10 swims. She achieved eight super pbs and made 3 finals, finishing just outside the medals in the 100m breast stroke, 200m breast stroke and 800m freestyle. Orla Colley, just 12 years old, made her first appearance at the IAG’s. She had one swim, the 100 back stroke, and she gave a super performance to finish with a strong pb.
Toni Dolan (16) had three swims. She made the final in the 400 individual medley and achieved two pbs in the 100m and 200m breast stroke. Sophie Igoe (11) also made her debut at the IAG’s where she had one swim, the 50m freestyle. She gave a great performance staying very close to her personal best.
Lena Kaminska (12) was anpother to make her IAG debut where she had four swims. Lena had two super personal bests in the 100m and 200m back stroke, making the final in the 100m finishing in eighth place. Caoimhe Moore had eight swims, achieving three personal bests, making three finals, finishing with a massive personal best of over six seconds in 400 individual medley to finish in sixth place, while also finishing eighth in 100m fly.
Sadhbh Moore (12) had one swim in the 50m free where she gave a super performance staying very close to her personal best. Katie O’Connor(11) made her debut to the IAG’s and had two swims, 50m free and 400m free. She achieved personal bests in both with a superb swim in the 400m achieving close to a 12 second personal best.
Daniela Ryan (14) had one swim, 200m back stroke and gave a super performance achieving a new personal best. Jessica Zhigulskaya (14) also made her IAG debut and had two swims, 100m free and 200m back stroke. She achieved a super personal best in 200m back.
For the boys Sean Donoghue was in great form. He had four swims, made one final and achieved three personal bests, with super personal bests in the 200m breast stroke and 400m individual medley for which he took the bronze medal.
Sam Farrell (14) made his debut at the competition and he did it in style. He had five swims, achieved four personal bests, reached two finals, the 100m and 200m back stroke. Sam took gold in the 100m and silver in the 200m achieving Division 1 times in both swims in the process.
Kuba Krawczun was also in top form. He had seven swims, achieved a whopping seven personal bests, reached five finals, taking the gold medal in 100m free, achieving a Division 1 time in the process. Kuba also took the bronze medal in the 200m individual medley again achieving a Division 1 time, while finishing just outside the medals in the 400m free and 200m free.
Cian Nugent had one swim, the 100m free giving a super performance when achieving a personal best. Ignat Samuchov, just 11 years old and the youngest of the boys competing for Laois Marlins, had a busy season and qualified in six swims. Ignat gave strong performances throughout the competition, achieving personal bests in 50m free, 100m back and 200m individual medley.
Finally, Valera Zaharovs who had two swims, 100m and 200m back stroke, achieved super personal bests in both swims and made the final in the 100m back stroke, in which he finished in ninth position.
This was a hugely successful year for Laois Marlins at the Irish Age Groups Division 2 Championships. The club is now looking forward to a successful winter season.

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