*File photo
*File photo

The Mailboxes Unlimited Winter Age Groups meet saw a number of impressive performances at the weekend — with Keagan Woolley the standout performer.

On the first day, Woolley lowered his best 200m free from 2 minutes 38.92 seconds to 2:33.81.  This gave him his first qualifying time for Carifta and broke the age group record of  2:34.92 set in 1988 by Stephen Fahy. 

Woolley finished the day with a record swim in the 50m back where he swam 36.34sec, lowering the record of 36.75 set in 1996 by Roy-Allan Burch, now a two-time Olympian.

Ben Smith, Head Coach for the Sharks Swim Club and National Coach, said in a press release: “The first night of the Mailboxes Unlimited Winter Age Group Championships saw lots of fast swims. 

“This meet is geared towards longer distances and gives swimmers the opportunity to compete in events that they may not normally do. There were a large amount of personal best times swum and some very close races.  Keagan Woolley was the stand out for the night."

The second day saw Woolley continue his recording breaking.  In the 100 free he swam 1:08.43 breaking the 1:08.90 that was set by Nick Thomson is 2002. Also, Sophie Froud had a great 200m free where she was able to hit her AA time for Carifta. 

The Sunday morning of the competition produced some more fast record breaking swims.  Froud followed up by hitting her second qualifying time in the 100 free with a very strong performance, while Woolley capped his last meet in the 10-and-under category by making his Carifta qualifying times in the 11-12 age group and lowering his own record in the 100m back from 1:18.95 to 1:18.18. 

Jesse Washington had a strong overall meet and really showed his strength in the 200m fly where he took Nick Patterson’s record in a time of 2:19.18 which shattered the previous best of 2:27.69.

Dolphin Swim Team coaches noted a marked improvement in technique displayed by their older swimmers. Brian Frick, Head Coach, said: “In the Development Meet, over half our swims were swimmers trying new events, which is always good.

“Also half of our repeats resulted in faster times - just three weeks from our last meet. Our coaches were impressed with the calm, disciplined approach of our younger swimmers to their events, and also with a definite improvement in stroke technique. Although a small group, our juniors and newer swimmers showed they have what it takes to succeed.”

Harbour Swim Team also impressed in the first major meet of the new season. They have more than 200 personal best times across the team in the 2013-14 season to date, and following on from a period of hard training, the team entered the Bermuda National Winter Age Groups, a longer distance meet, full of expectation of strong swims.

Leading the Harbour line up was Emma Harvey, who recorded a time of 2.46.65 in the girls 11-12 200m Butterfly, a new National Age Group record. Brett Smith swam strongly across all the events, as did Alex Pilgrim, and they both finished as top male in the 11-12 age group. Peter Kiernan continues his impressive start to the season with further time improvements and in the female 10 and Under category, Maya Crockwell posted a time which enables her to train with the Bermuda Training Team.