After a gap of 2 years, a very excited group made the trip North this year to compete in what is fast becoming one of the most eagerly anticipated club events on the calendar.
After settling into our accommodation in Inverness, it was off to a local restaurant for our evening meal. Our time there could probably be compared to a swarm of locusts descending on a crop and devouring everything in sight. Fraser, however had great difficulty keeping tabs on his ice cream which constantly disappeared then re appeared when he least expected it.
We made our way to the pool early the next morning to be greeted by our hosts who were delighted to see us back.
The first event was the 100m breaststroke in which our swimmers featured strongly. Beth Denholm won Gold, Kimberley MacKay silver and Amy Sylvester bronze, whilst Lauren Sutherland picked up a point in 4th place. This event also saw an excellent swim from Vaila Robertson who reduced her PB by 10 seconds and Hebe Ramsay who reduced hers by 4.
In the 100m backstroke there were very good PBs from Katy Needham, Anna MacKay, Bryony Eunson, Beth McFarlane and Jenny Timoney.
Midlothian swimmers were back in the medals in the next event, the 100m butterfly. Jenny Jubb claimed Gold, Fiona Inglis Silver with Beth Gray finishing 4th.
Ross Muego recorded a huge 9 second PB in the 100m IM and this was followed by good PBs from Lauren Sutherland, Hebe Ramsay and Vaila Robertson in the corresponding girl’s event in which, despite being slightly outside her best, Kimberley MacKay won gold.
In the older girls 100m IM, Amy Sylvester won her second bronze in a personal best time and there was also a PB for Nikki Pettitt.
The youngest member of our team, Fraser Wilson kept the momentum going with a very good swim to claim silver in the 50m backstroke. This was matched a few minutes later by Andrew Denholm in the 11 years 100m breaststroke.
In the same event Beth McFarlane won bronze and there was excellent PBs for Bryony Eunson, Anna MacKay, Katy Needham and Jenny Timoney.
In the 100m butterfly, Kimberley MacKay claimed her second Gold, Sarah Eunson won bronze and Amy Sylvester picked up a team point in finishing 4th with all 3 girls recording PBs.
The final individual event of the day was the 100m freestyle for the older age groups. First, Prentice Robertson swam an excellent race to record his first PB of the weekend; then Fiona Inglis set a new club record but just missed breaking the 60 second barrier by only 0.07 in winning Gold in the girl’s event. There were also good PBs from Jenny Jubb who finished 4th and Beth Gray.
The day was finished off by the 4 x 50m medley relays which proved to be very exciting, resulting in the noise levels reaching new heights. In the younger age group, our team of Bryony Eunson, Beth McFarlane, Anna MacKay and Jenny Timony narrowly missed out on a medal finishing a very close 4th. An identical fate was met by our ‘B’ Team of Sarah Eunson, Nikki Pettitt, Beth Gray and Lauren Sutherland in the older age group as they missed out by less than 1 second. However our ‘A’ team of Kimberley MacKay, Beth Denholm, Jenny Jubb and Fiona Inglis comfortably won Gold.
It was a weary team that headed back to our accommodation after day 1 but they were soon revived after devouring masses of pizza which had been acquired for half price thanks to David Eunson’s negotiating skills.
This was followed by birthday cake to celebrate Vaila Robertson’s birthday, before eating gave way to social activities for the remainder of the evening.
An early start the following day meant that there were some bedraggled and scary sights at breakfast, but none as bad as Jenny Timoney’s pyjamas. There was the usual scramble to clear bedrooms before departing for the pool.
The first event of the day was the 100m IM for some of the younger boys. Andrew Denholm and Iain Doyle both swam really well in recording excellent PBs with Andrew winning bronze.
Fraser Wilson then finished 4th in the 50m breaststroke, missing bronze by a mere 0.5 seconds.
It was bronze also for Fiona Inglis in the 100m backstroke where she finished with a 2 second PB with Jenny Jubb finishing 4th.
Amy Sylvester won our 3rd bronze of the day in the 100m freestyle and a good PB from Sarah Eunson resulted in a 4th place finish.
Kimberley MacKay broke this trend by winning Gold in the 100m freestyle and in this event there was also a good PB for Hebe Ramsay.
Katy Needham chopped an incredible 12 seconds from her 100m butterfly time, Jenny Timoney, 4 seconds from hers and Andrew Denholm finished 4th in the boys event.
Not to outdone, Fraser Wilson the reduced his 100m IM by over 9 seconds, winning bronze in the process.
In the same event, good swims from Anna MacKay, Katy Needham, Bryony Eunson and Jenny Timoney saw them all record PBs, Jenny’s a very impressive 8 seconds.
In the oldest age group, all our swimmers set new PBs in the 100m breaststroke. Prentice Robertson, Jenny Jubb, who won silver, Beth Gray who finished 4th and Fiona Inglis, all swam really well in this event.
Fraser Wilson who was having a great weekend, had to settle for 4th place in the 50m butterfly before Ross Muego recorded his best swim of the weekend with a 3.5 second PB in the 100m backstroke.
In the corresponding girl’s event, Kimberley MacKay won her 4th Gold of the weekend and Vaila Robertson capped a fine weekend’s work with another PB.
In the older age group, Sarah Eunson won medal number 2, again bronze despite swimming slightly below her best.
Katy Needham was another who was swimming really well continued this in her final individual race with a 7.5 second PB in the 100m freestyle.
The final individual event of the meet was the 100m IM in the oldest age group. Prentice Roberson was first in action and he swam really well to record a 2.5 second PB.
This was followed by the girls in what turned out to be one of the closest finishes of the weekend. Despite trailing in second place going into the final length, Fiona Inglis produced a storming finish to win Gold in the closest of margins. Jenny Jubb finished 3rd with a fantastic 7 second PB and Beth Gray also improved her time.
The day finished with the 4 x 50m freestyle relays and there was more success for our team. In the older age group, our B Team of Beth Gray, Sarah Eunson, Jenny Jubb and Amy Sylvester finished in the Bronze medal position. Our A Team consisting of Beth Denholm, Kimberley MacKay, Lauren Sutherland and Fiona Inglis was involved in another nail biting finish and again we came out on top winning Gold with the narrowest of margins.
However our younger team of Katy Needham, Jenny Timony, Beth McFarlane and Anna MacKay had to again settle for 4th place.
The final award of the weekend and perhaps the most prestigious was still to be decided. Throughout the weekend, swimmers had been submitting reports of daft quotes from their team mates. In the end, the winner was unanimous and the prize went to Lauren Sutherland who was under the distinct impression that Salami was a type of fish!!!!!
The long trip back was uneventful as a weary team reflected on a very successful and thoroughly enjoyable weekend.