Five Midlothian swimmers participated in these championships which had been brought forward to 15th – 18th December. After a lengthy absence this event returned to Inverness and it proved to be a good move for our swimmers.
Laden with enough food to feed an army for a week, we set off on Thursday morning and soon were settling into our ideal rented house courtesy of a relative of David Eunson. After a short time however it was off to the pool where Fiona Inglis and Kimberley MacKay were to swim in the 50m butterfly.
They both got our weekend off to a great start, recording excellent personal bests with Fiona vastly improving her ranking.
The following morning saw an early start for everyone as we arrived at the pool around 6.30am!!!
First in action was Jenny Jubb in the 200m butterfly. Jenny had only a few weeks previously broken the long standing club record for this event but this time she completely smashed it. She led the race from start to finish reducing the record by a further 4.5 seconds.
This proved to be an inspiration to the rest and in the next event, Beth Denholm swam her 200m breaststroke in a personal best time.
Kimberley MacKay and Fiona Inglis both swam well in the 100m freestyle with Fiona breaking the 2 years old club record by dipping under the 61 second mark.
In the afternoon, Beth Denholm produced another personal best swim in the 800m freestyle and then to cap a great day swam yet another in the 50m breaststroke. In the same event, Beth McFarlane and Kimberley MacKay also swam personal bests. It’s worth mentioning at this stage that Beth M. had travelled all the way from Penicuik earlier in the day for this event, she then joined us for our evening meal and returned home later that night.
Day 3 started with another PB and another club record for Fiona Inglis in the 200m freestyle. She later narrowly missed out on a club record for the 100m IM but produced another good PB.
In the 100m butterfly, Jenny Jubb recorded a good PB and was closely followed by Kimberley MacKay.
A short time later, Kimberley was joined by Beth Denholm in the 100m breaststroke. Both girls swam well but were marginally outside their best times. Beth’s 400m freestyle produced a similar result although she did improve her ranking but by this time the early morning starts were catching up.
Kimberley had been suffering from a cold virus for weeks prior to the meet and was feeling worse by the hour and as a result was forced to withdraw from the 400m IM, a gruelling event at the best of times.
However, we started a bit later on the final day and she competed in the shorter 100m event where she performed reasonably well as she did in the 50m freestyle. Beth Denholm was marginally outside her best in the 100m IM event.
Fiona also swam the 50m freestyle and produced her 4th PB in 4 swims, missing out on a third club record by 0.01 seconds. This was enough to qualify for the B final where she again had a great swim but just failed to better her time.
The only event remaining was the 4 x 50m medley relay and the girls by now were all suffering from sore throats, colds and various other ailments. Despite this they were very much up for it and had the club record firmly in their sights. Kimberley started on backstroke and finished with an early lead, Beth D. extended this on the breaststroke and this was continued by Jenny on the fly. By the time Fiona started the final freestyle leg the team held a commanding lead. Never the less Fiona powered through her swim and in the end they smashed the club record by an amazing 3 seconds.
This capped a fantastic 4 days swimming and it was a very tired but satisfied team who returned home on the Sunday evening. 4 of the girls were struggling a bit with colds etc. which not only hampered them a bit when competing but which had restricted their training in the lead up to this meet. To their immense credit, they never complained, were very professional during their time in Inverness and were a credit to the club.
Thanks to Lesley Inglis for the huge amount of preparatory work and her efforts in Inverness and to Karen MacKay for her assistance over the 4 days.