12/11/11 BUCS Short Course

The weekend of the 12th November saw EUSWPC take their top tier swimmers down to Sheffield for the BUCS Short Course Championships.

At one of the biggest events in the University calendar the squad were ready for the challenge. The long distance events were up first, and Ishbel Rodgers pulled out all the stops for the team in the 800m alongside Emma Bird; gaining crucial points for the team in the 400m freestyle and 400m Medley (IM), Rodgers also gained a PB time of 4:35.95 in the 400 freestyle. For the men, Cameron Smith put tremendous effort into the long distance freestyle events; 1500m, 400m and 200m. Newcomer Jack Holroyd swam excellently in the 200m freestyle and 50m breaststroke. Another great effort for a fist time BUCS competitor came from Orion Young, who made finals in the 50m freestyle and 100m freestyle, placing 9th and 6th respectively. Jenn Davis took one for the team, attacking the 200m fly with a superb time of 1:07.22. Nicholas Quinn made it the 200m breaststroke final with team-mate Scott Wilcox, with final times of 2:17.04 and 2:23.66 respectively. James Thomson placed 8th in the 200m IM with a fantastic time of 2:05.55. Kieran McGuckin had a number of fast swims in the backstroke events which got him into the finals. Timing 56.99 in 100m backstroke final, it was in the 50m backstroke final that McGuckin had a particularly good race; with a time of 25.98 he placed 5th but it was an extremely close race among the top five. McGuckin touched with 0.64 seconds of the contender from Heriot Watt, Craig McNally, who took first place.

Edinburgh’s ladies were also making the grade across the events spectrum. Sarah Eaglesham made finals comfortably in the 200m, 100m, and 50m freestyle events; placing 3rd in the 200m freestyle final with a tremendous 2:00.89. Corrie Scott made PBs in all her events and came out top in the 50m breaststroke final, with a time of 31.63, in an all-Scotland charge among the top three; Kathryn Johnstone of Heriot Watt came in 2nd and Andrea Strachan took 3rd. Strachan also put a great swim into the 100 breaststroke, taking 4th in the final. Emma Bird just touched out in the final of the 200m breaststroke, which was a close match right until the end; with a PB time of 2:26.57 Bird was just 0.06 seconds behind the Loughborough winner. Bird claimed a well-deserved victory in the 100m breaststroke final.

One of the biggest achievements of the weekend was for Richard Shafers, who won the 100m and 50m freestyle finals in great style; the 100m freestyle saw Shafers go out with a rapid first 50m, leaving his competitors to scramble after him, but to no avail, Shafers took 1st in a time of 49.14.

Some speedy times were also made in the relay events. In the 200m freestyle relay the Edinburgh women took 2nd place, beating Bath by 0.06 seconds; whilst the men placed 4th, just 0.12 seconds away from 3rd place. In the 200m Medley relay the men claimed 3rd behind the sport powerhouses of Bath and Loughbourough. In a dramatic final twist the Edinburgh ladies were disqualified in the 200 Medley relay, denying the team 3rd place overall. Nonetheless, 4th place – beating Stirling ITC and coming only six points behin Swansea ITC – was a fantastic result for Edinburgh; Women’s Captain Gayle Biggart commented it was the ‘best result from a Scottish Short Course yet’. Credit is due to coaches Chris Jones and Mark Jaggs for their hard work and dedication. The result was also a reflection of the commitment shown by the swimmers; such fast swims and so many PBs from the University’s Performance swimmers puts them in a great position ahead of the Olympic trials in March.