County relay success for Pershore swimmers

Evesham Journal: The medal-winning nine to 10 years boys' team for Pershore. The medal-winning nine to 10 years boys' team for Pershore.

PERSHORE swimmers claimed three age group titles and smashed a 12-year-old record at the Inter Club County Relay Championships in Wolverhampton.

They bagged eight medals against strong and bigger clubs, including the likes of Worcester, Redditch and Stourbridge, coming away with three golds, four silvers and a bronze.

In the nine to 10 year age group, Pershore's girls and boys both secured podium finishes in the 4x50-metre freestyle and medley relays.

The girls' quartet of Macey French, Alexandra Barry, Hannah Woodcock and Jasmine Franks qualified first in the freestyle heats in two minutes 18.26 seconds.

Seeded number one in the final, the girls again impressed with 2.18.30 but had to settle for silver as they were edged out by much-improved Stourbridge.

In the medley, the same quartet qualified for the final in third place in 2.42.03 just behind Stourbridge and Redditch.

A change to the team order by head coach Tom Naughton proved an inspired move as a time of 2.39.97 grabbed a much-deserved silver.

The boys' nine to 10 years team of county debutant Owen Kirby, Jamie Saunders, Cameron Leach and Patrick Heeks also scooped silver in the freestyle relay in 2.24.32 behind Worcester, who broke the age-group record. In the medley, Pershore managed bronze in 2.49.22.

In the 11 to 12 year age group, the boys' team of William Gearey, Josh Sharratt, Simon Sweatman and Chris Vizard retained their county titles from two years ago by winning both the freestyle and medley.

The freestyle heats saw them smash the previous county record of 2.00.86, which had stood since 2002, by clocking 1.58.77.

As number one seeds, they could not quite match their qualifying time in the final but still produced 1.58.85 to take their first county title of the day.

In the medley, Pershore again qualified fastest through the heats and, rising to the challenge in the final, they secured another title in 2.18.60.

The girls' 11 to 12 years team of Megan Annis, Charlotte Downey, Naomi Marsden and Isabella Woodcock faced tough opposition.

Pershore qualified for the freestyle final in sixth place in 2.11.99 and then finished sixth again in 2.12.03.

In the medley, Pershore improved on their freestyle qualifying, setting the fifth fastest time.

The opposition in the final again proved fierce with Pershore finishing fifth in 2.25.36.

The girls' 13 to 14 years team of Beth Carter, Hope Rochelle, Hannah Simister and Jasmine Taite qualified well for both the freestyle and medley finals.

In the medley, the Pershore quartet qualified in seventh in 2.21.06 and then managed sixth in the final in 2.22.94.

In the freestyle, the team just managed to secure eighth in 2.09.38 but again improved in the final with seventh in 2.09.35.

The girls'15 to 16 years team of Emily Burton, Alice Hall, Katie Sharratt and Lizzie Vizard were just outside the medals in both the relays.

In the medley, Pershore clocked 2.25.78 to take fifth against formidable opposition.

They managed to then secure another fifth place in the freestyle in 2.10.48.

The mixed masters quartet of Helen Annis, Luke Bussey, Marie Porter and David McManus scooped the gold medal and county title in the freestyle in 1.59.65.

Pershore were just edged out for the silver in the medley, touching in 2.15.37 with Worcester winning in 2.15.21.

Naughton said: “What a brilliant day for the club with great swims from all our teams."

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