Bishop’s Stortford made a strong start to the 2015 Hertfordshire Peanuts League competition on 10 May in Stevenage, taking third place in the first round. Competing against six other clubs in Division 1, they achieved an impressive 27 top-three places and 54 personal best (PB) times.
The most experienced swimmers led the way, with U13 girls Nellie Eastland, Anya Fletcher, Kaitlin Owen and Jessica Penkul winning the 4x50m medley relay (2:26.51) and the 4x50m freestyle relay (2:08.38) in confident style. Nellie also put in an impressive swim to take first in 50m fly (33.66, PB) and second in 50m free (31.46, PB), with Anya securing third in 50m backstroke (36.26, PB)
U13 boys Nicholas Botha, Alex Catton and Callum Harold were joined in the relays but Thomas Ogden, swimming up an age group. They took third in the 4x50m medley relay (2:29.55) and 4x50m freestyle relay (2:14.53). Alex was second in 50m back (36.52, PB), Callum took second in 50m breaststroke (42.50, PB) and Nicholas was third in 50m fly (36.91). In all, the U13s achieved 11 PBS on the night.
The youngest swimmers, the 9 year-olds, were experiencing their first ever team event. Sorcha Brickell was third in 25m back (22.23) and the squad of Millie Andrews, Sorcha, Freya Reilly and Evelyn Scott put on a gritty display to take third in the 25m freestyle relay (1:19.38). Thomas Harris Gee swam a determined race to take third in 25m breaststroke; he and David Badcock swam PBs in every one of their races, a great start to their competitive careers.
Georgina Barlow, Martha Broderick, Isabella Good, Grace Massingham-Lamprell, Ella Penkul and Minnie Savage swam for the U11s with a number of top-3 placings. Ella, Georgina, Martha and Grace put in a strong performance to take third in the 25m medley relay (1:21.37), while Georgina swam an excellent race to take second in 25m breaststroke (21.54, PB), Martha was third in 25m free (17.62, PB) and Grace third in 25m back (20.24, PB).
For the U11 boys, Charles Evans was second in 25m back (19.90, PB) and the team of Charles, Beau Anten, James Gisborne and Thomas Howes took second in the 25m freestyle relay (1:12.70). James, Thomas and Charles also swam up an age group in the U12 relays and some individual events, so a very busy night for them! In the individual events, Thomas Ogden put in some very impressive swims in the U12s to take second in 50m free in a current club record time of 32.08. He then followed this up with a second current club record in 50m fly of 36.06 to take third.
The U12 girls were represented by Charlotte Anderson, Isabelle Baker, Millie Fields and Eleanor Mason and were never out of the top 3. Millie took second in 50m free (32.97) and third in 50m back (36.73, PB). Eleanor was second in 50m fly (37.92), and Charlotte second in 50m breaststroke (45.17, PB). The team were second in the 4x50m freestyle relay (2:17.48) and the 4x50m medley relay (2:35.95).
The evening was rounded off with the thrilling squadron relay, with eight swimmers, one from each category, swimming 25m freestyle. In an excellent display, Stortford swimmers secured third place (2:09.40).
The Club welcomes swimmers of all ages, so if you are interested in joining up and having the chance to take part in future Peanuts competitions, get in touch via the website!