Ballina swim team sets pace

BALLINA Indoor Swim Team sent a squad of State qualifiers to the Queensland short-course swimming championships at the weekend, with several winning medals.

Ten local swimmers competed in more than 60 events which resulted in numerous personal best times and nine top 10 finishes.

Hayden Thomas (16) received a silver medal in the 400m freestyle, taking more than 13 seconds off his best time to swim 4m14s and qualify for the national championships.

The freestyle specialist also swam personal best times in the 50m freestyle (25.74s) and in the 100m freestyle (56.14s).

Julian Aenishaenslin (11) and Caitlin Bigg (11), the team's youngest members at the championships, swam well and placed in the top 10 in two and three events respectively. They also swum PBs in all their races, as did Murray Thomas (13) and Matthew Ogden (16).

Matthew, a breaststroke specialist, took 10 seconds off his 200m time to place seventh and he also qualified for nationals in the 100m and 200m.

Ben Harper (15) swam a national qualifying time in the 100m breaststroke with a 2s personal best.

Jacob Ogden (12) broke the 40-second barrier in the 50m breaststroke, swimming it in 39.80s. He backed that up with solid swims in backstroke and breaststroke events.

Mikayla Gray (14) and Nathan Gray (16) had busy programs with eight and 11 swims respectively, but they showed the depth of their talents by swimming multiple PBs and placing well within their age divisions.

Ian Zilm (18), the club captain, thanked coach Peter Charlton for all his hard work.

Anyone interested in competitive swimming is welcome at the Ballina Indoor Swim Team's weekly club nights from 5.30pm on Wednesdays for all ages and abilities.

Inquiries to 66868299.

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