The strength of BSSC Masters was shown on the first day when both Liz and Sally opening up the ceremony with resounding wins in the 200 IM (2.33.04, massive PB!) and the 200 freestyle (2.22.25). Sally having smashed the European record earlier in the year set two new records over the weekend for both the 100m GBR (1.06.45) and 200m EUR (2.22.25) freestyle. The 100m swim started out with a 31.8 first 50 and powered through the second 50m to break the record and the 200 was just awesome from the start. On the last day Sal followed this with an impressive 50m freestyle swim (30.7) resulting in a silver medal after being narrowly touched out by Kula-Prezewanski from the impressive Gloucester Masters squad.
Sally had her medals presented by the fabulous Jane Asher herself a multiple world record holder and Icon of British Swimming.
Lizzy smashed a 13 year British record (and a lifetime personal best) in the 100m fly in a time of 1.05.23 and followed this with a blistering 50 fly (29.14) to beat Gina Hobson from Otter. The quality of Liz’s swim was marked by just being 0.07 secs away from ex Olympian Katie Sexton in the age group below. Her 400 IM (5.36.89), another personal best swim gave her a silver medal just beaten by Helen Prentice from Otter.
Helen (Ruby) had strong swims in the 200 and 100 IM (2.54.64 coming 4th and 1.21.52 coming 9th) improving her personal best times in both events and the Anne Vanner put in stoic performances in the 50m (30.29, so close again to the 30!!) and 100m (1.07.58) freestyle.
The men’s team was boosted by Pete & Ash swimming in his first competition for more than 30 years. Both joined Baz in the 100M fly and Freestyle taking 4,5, and 6th in the 100 fly (Pete, Barry, Ash)and 5th, 6th and 10th in the freestyle (Baz, Pete, Ash). The 100 fly was a fantastic race with Pete (1.10.54) holding on to beat Baz (1.10.59) by 0.05 seconds. Ash (1.11.57) took more than 2 seconds off his most recent 100m fly time with a swim that showed there is much more to follow. Pete opting for a strong swim in the 100m backstroke just finishing 0.17 behind the bronze medal position and similarly with a great 100IM swim (1.11.88)
Baz (29.23) and Ash (30.47) then took gold and bronze in the 50m fly , with Ash just missing out on a silver medal. Baz put more than a second between first and second placed Geoff Baker from Rochford, making this his second fastest short course swim ever. Ash (29.04) and Baz (27.82) also had fine 50m freestyle swims with the latter missing a medal by around 0.6 of a second.
Our strength in the 4 x 100m freestyle saw the combination of the Sally, Lizzie (1.02.6!!), Pete and Baz storm to another gold medal winning performance leaving the silver medalists’ Birmingham Masters some 4 seconds adrift.