One of the biggest turnouts of the season for the Trail Stingrays saw 26 swimmers compete at the Colville Sharks Swim Meet on the weekend.
“The Stingrays had a great weekend in Colville,” said Trail coach Jennifer Chung. “This meet was a six-event meet, but it was a little different than the others.”
Swim Meets across the Kootenays and northern Washington are working the stress out of competitive swimming. The Kootenay Zone swim meets have injected an element of fun into their events and this past weekend’s meet in Colville, Wash. was no exception.
In the Sharks meet, Division 3 swimmers were able to sign up for any six events, meaning Div. 3s could challenge themselves and swim in 100-metre fly, 100 back, and 100 breast – longer races than they would traditionally swim – while Divisions 4-8 could swim in sprints like 50-m. back, 50m. breast, and 100-m. individual medley (IM), where competitors swim a length of the pool in each stroke (butterfly, back, breast, and freestyle).
“This was just a fun meet for kids to set times in events they normally would not be allowed to swim in,” added Chung.
Earlier meets saw Creston hold a fun Eliminator race, while Trail’s own swim meet introduced a Jamboree style event where swimmers were seeded by times rather than age and gender.
The Sharks’ meet was also the last of the season before Regionals, and the outdoor pool proved a fast track for Stingrays swimmers.
In Div.1 boys, Ryder Cain took 19 seconds off his 100-m free with a 2:23.64, Olivia Kivell, in div 3.girls, slashed nine seconds off her 100 free with 1:52.23, and Bryn Basham competed in her first meet with outstanding performances, setting new personal best times for 50-m. free, 47.06, 50 breaststroke, 1:04.57, and 50 back, 1:00.82.
Div. 5 girls Jocilynne Iachette also swam in her first swim meet and set personal best times in the 50 free, 56.22, and 50 back, 1:04.82.
Ripley Shubert, in Div. 4 boys, continued to impress, knocking 12 seconds off his 100 IM with a time of 1:20.81.
Div. 4 girls Claire Fricke competed in the Guts and Glory Challenge, another “fun” event that goes at the end of the meet every year. Each team chooses one swimmer to swim a 400-m. IM. Claire finished third with a time of 6:36.43.
Kate Fricke- Div 1 – Bronze
Noah Howell- Div 1 – Silver
Keira Demmler- Div 2 – Silver
Ripley Shubert- Div 4 – Bronze
Juliana Zhou- Div 6 – Silver
Jennifer Chung- Div 8 – Gold
Paul Fricke- Div 8 – Bronze
Colville finished first overall, with Grand Forks coming second, Castlegar third, Kimberley fourth, Trail fifth, and Nelson sixth.
The Stingrays will host the Kootenay Regional Swim Meet at the Trail Aquatic and Leisure Centre on Saturday and Sunday.
The BC Summer Swimming Association Provincial Championships go in Surrey Aug. 16-19.