Ellie Knox of the Trail Stingrays competes in the backstroke event during last weekend’s Grand Forks meet.

Ellie Knox of the Trail Stingrays competes in the backstroke event during last weekend’s Grand Forks meet.

Young Stingrays step into spotlight

Club hosting its annual swim meet this weekend at the Trail Aquatic and Leisure Centre

With their own meet set for this weekend, the Trail Stingrays gave their new swimmers a chance to test the waters in the annual Grand Forks “B” meet last weekend.

The one-day event, featuring four disciplines, is geared towards the newcomers to the respective programs and offers a level playing field for those getting their first taste of competition.

“It’s less intimidating than other meets because swimmers with faster ‘A’ times cannot compete,” explained Stingrays coach Samme Beatson.

She added that several Stingrays stepped up thanks to the greater opportunity.

“Sydney Dobie, and Loren and Morgan Corkill preformed incredibly at their first swim meet ever.

“Every Stingray swimmer at the meet swam best times with some taking up to 35 seconds off from their last year times.”

Josie Dunham won two “A” times in the Div 1 50m backstroke and 50m freestyle, and Olivia Ady won an ‘A’ time in the 50m backstroke. Issabella Ady, Olivia Ady, Josie Dunham, Reid Dunham and Georgia Merry swam best times in all of their events.

Winners of aggregate medals at this meet were: Olivia Ady winning a silver medal in Div. 1 while Josie Dunham placed first in a tie with a Castlegar swimmer; Reid Dunham placed third in Div. 4; Georgia Merry placed third in Div. 5 while Nicole Merry placed first in the same category; and Connor Dunham placed second in Div. 5 boys, with Josh Ballarin placing first.

“This is an outstanding amount of medals for the Stingray swimmers, and overall the Stingrays had an incredibly successful meet.”

Beatson is hoping that success buoys the young swimmers on to bigger and better things this weekend when the club hosts its annual meet at the Trail Aquatic Centre.

Seven clubs will join the Stingrays at the meet, which promises to provide plenty of excitement.

“All events are exciting to watch,” said Beatson. “But the most exciting are the six-year-old and under races before lunch and right after in the midday.

“We welcome the community to come out and see what we do best,” she added. “The final heats are in the afternoon and the relays are at the end of the day.”

The club is also trying to boost its membership by encouraging its swimmers to recruit a buddy to come to the pool for its “Bring a Friend Day” today.

The goal is to introduce the sport to newcomers and emphasize the camaraderie and fun the club has to offer.

“We hope to show more kids in the community that swimming is a fun and worthwhile sport,” said Beatson.

“This year the registration for “Bring a Friend Day” will also cover insurance for up to five practices within two weeks so kids can really get a taste of what we do.”

Forms can be found on the Stingrays website at trailstingrays.ca