Spring Equinox Extravaganza Gala Review – 20 March 2022

Beverley Barracudas is ‘Top Club’ at the Spring Equinox Extravaganza

A buzz of anticipation, expectation and excitement was palpable as swimmers and supporters waited outside the East Riding Leisure Centre on Sunday morning. As the sun dawned over Beverley, many families had been awake for hours to travel to the Spring Equinox Extravaganza hosted by Beverley Barracudas Swimming Club. And as we know, Beverley Barracudas has a reputation for hosting high quality events with high standards of competition – indeed, this event lived up to all expectations.

The younger and newer swimmers were excited – if a little nervous – about the opportunity to compete with fellow swimmers from across the region. Whilst the older, more experienced members anticipated personal bests (PBs) and qualifying times for the Yorkshire and Northeast regional competitions ahead. As the infamous yellow seats of the spectator gallery filled with proud parents, coaches and their eager teams took their positions poolside. This was going to be an incredibly exciting day…

The morning kicked-off with the girls’ 200m IM (individual medley) event where butterfly, backstroke, breaststroke and freestyle skills (in that order) are needed in equal measure. Florence K. was 1st in the age 11 B grade race, Charlotte W. achieved 3rd age 12 (A grade) and Emily T. knocked over 5 seconds off her entry time, coming 3rd in the age 12 B grade category. In the older age groups, Megan B. deserves a mention for her fantastic 1st place in the age 15 A grade race, showing skill and determination in every stroke.

The boys’ 100m IM race was equally exciting with Cameron C. and Oliver W. coming 2nd and 3rdrespectively for the age 9s and Lucas B. taking 2nd place in the age 10s. Oscar H, Ben S. and Max A. also swam well in a challenging event with strong competition from other clubs.

The boys’ 50m backstroke produced a plethora of PBs from the Beverley swimmers, including Ronnie C. who knocked 3.35 seconds off his entry time with a silver for the age 11 A grade and Henry K-H who knocked 3.53 seconds off his entry time.

The girls’ 100m butterfly event saw Stella H. achieving a silver medal and Laura S. with a gold medal for their age categories. The club’s boy of the year – Alex M. – deserves a special mention for his excellent performance in the 50m breaststroke event; not only did he clock a PB, but he took home a gold medal. The age 15+ race was a battle between William S. and Timothy H. which resulted in gold and silver places respectively for the two teammates.

Fast-forwarding to the afternoon’s programme of events, spectators were rewarded with an exhilarating 200m individual medley race with Dan S. and William S. neck-and-neck throughout the entire 200m distance. Dan’s strong start gave him the slight edge on the day and, as both competitors touched the boards at the finish, only 0.6 seconds separated them. With Dan taking away the gold, William settled for a silver medal.

The afternoon continued with more excellent performances from the young swimmers. Notably, the girls’ 50m backstroke event saw Stella H. overcoming her nerves and taking gold in the A grade race for the 10-year-old girls, shaving-off more than 4 seconds from her entry time. Florence K. and Charlotte S. battled it out for gold and silver places for the age 11 B grade with Imogen R. snatching a bronze at the A grade standard.

A stunning race to watch during the afternoon was the 100m freestyle boys’ 13 – 15+ event. For the younger swimmers, this was a chance to be inspired to train – and train hard! Kieran G’s gold place was a spectators’ delight. He showed both talent and power in the water.

The talented prowess continued from Beverley Barracudas swimmers throughout the afternoon with Lucy C, Maisie C. and Lucy W. all taking home gold medals for the 100m butterfly. It was a joy to watch these swimmers competing at such a high level with a stroke that many would regard as the most technical.

The boys’ 13 – 15+ age 50m backstroke heats provided consistently competitive races. George P, Liam J. and Kieran G. all took home gold medals whilst Oliver H. achieved a silver and Charlie A. was awarded bronze. They should all be extremely proud of their achievements as the standard was particularly high for this event.

All Beverley Barracudas swimmers worked hard on Sunday, not only demonstrating their individual talents but also contributing to the overall team score. With great delight – and much deservedly – Beverley Barracudas swimming club took home the 1st place trophy. Clubs from as far flung as York, Louth, Bridlington and Scunthorpe competed amicably yet seriously for the coveted first place. And every performance from the Beverley swimmers counted. Well done to all our swimmers – you did yourselves proud!

Whilst Beverley Barracudas took the title of ‘top club,’ individual swimmers crowned ‘top’ included: Cameron C, Holly G. and Kieran G. Overall second place swimmers included: Stella H, Lucas C, Ollie S, Charlotte W, Anna P and Megan B. Overall third place swimmers included: Emilie C, Oliver W, Oscar H, Imogen R, Lucy C, Alex M, Flora M, Lucy W. and William S.

As swimmers, coaches and spectators headed for home on Sunday evening, there was a general sigh of relief that galas – as we know them – are finally back. What an exciting event for all swimmers who, Beverley Barracudas club hopes, not only serves to inspire young swimmers to continue to train hard but, most importantly, to enjoy the opportunity for camaraderie and sharing of knowledge, skill and talent within a mutually supportive and appreciative environment.