July 25, 2018

Swim Ireland’s Irish Summer National Championships got underway at the National Aquatic Centre in Dublin today. Over 800 swimmers will compete across 5 days of competition for age group titles.

The first evening finals of the day saw age group swimmers in the 100m Breaststroke. National Centre Dublin swimmers Alex Murphy and Niamh Coyne were both victorious in the senior age group, Coyne clocking a best time of 1:07.87 with Murphy touching in 1:02.61. Ards’ Matthew Hand was the clear winner in the boys 12-13 age group in 1:13.38 with Salius Uoka of Templeogue taking the 14-year-old age group title in 1:12.52. Ben Woodside took his first gold in the 15-year-old age group in 1:06.18 while National Centre Limerick’s Eoin Corby dominated the 16-year-old age group with a winning time of 1:04.15.

13-year-old Enniskillen Lakelanders swimmer Ellie McCartney was first home in her age group in 1:14.51, Galway’s Alison Gibbs won in the 14-year-old age group title in 1:17.91, Julia Knox (Banbridge) clocked 1:13.18 for the 15-year-old age group gold while Sharks Aoife Bates topped the podium in 1:16.00 just ahead of Otters Jena MacDougald (1:16.30) in the 16s age group.

In the 200m Freestyle the 15-year-old girls had the crowd on their feet with just .14 of a second separating the top three. Amelia Kane, Naomi Trait (2:07.54) and Cara Osing (2:07.59) swam a fantastic race with Kane of Ards collecting the national title in 2:07.45. European Juniors swimmers Maria Godden (2:03.94) and Victoria Catterson (2:06.75) claimed the 16-year-old and 17 and over titles respectively. Trojan’s Aisling Rowlands collected 12-13 age group gold in 2:13.50 while in the 14-years age group Hannah O’Shea of Dolphin touched in 2:10.03 for gold just behind visitor Freya Rothery (2:08.52) of Toronto.

In the boys 200m Freestyle events Marc Galland (2:08.89), Finn O’Neill (2:09.59) and Adam Barnes (2:09.92) all went under 2:10 to make the podium in the 12-13 age group. Kilkenny swimmers Aidan Cook (2:05.16) and Conor Johnson (2:06.72) took gold and silver in the 14-year-old age group while their team mate Brian Desmond was first home in the 15-year-old age group in 1:59.08. Lisburn’s Dylan Griffiths won 16-year-old age-group gold in 1:57.24 and in the 17&O group UCD’s Dean Power clocked the fastest time of the day finishing in 1:52.43.

Both Eoin Corby and Matthew Hand returned to the pool after their 100m Breaststroke victories to take gold in the 400m Individual Medley. Corby clocked 4:37.04 with Hand touching in 5:06.62. For the 14-year-olds Sundays Wells’ Liam Custer clocked 4:54.75 for gold just behind Toronto’s Charlie Skalenda (4:51.21). Skalenda’s team mate Griffin Lajoie was first to touch in the 15-year-olds final in 4:59.99 for commemorative gold with Banbridge’s Adam Wilson taking the Irish title in 5:01.50. There was no separating Cillian Melly and Cadan McCarthy as the National Centre Limerick swimmers battled it out in the 17&O age-group, Melly eventually getting the touch by just one tenth of a second in 4:28.68 ahead of McCarthy’s 4:28.78.

Ellie McCartney and Julia Knox continued the Breaststroke to IM trend with both claiming gold for the second time today, McCartney in 5:12.41 and Knox in an impressive 4:53.46. Dolphin’s Hannah O’Shea added to 200m Freestyle silver with gold in the 14-year-old age group in 5:16.24, Elsa Daigle of Toronto took commemorative gold in 5:15.15. In the 16-year-old age group only one hundredth of a second separated Templogue’s Robyn Lynch and Shark’s Aoife Bates at the finish, Lynch getting to the wall in 5:19.03 just ahead of Bates. There was no denying Ellen Walshe the 17 and over title as the Templeogue swimmer cruised to victory in 5:02.20.

Our first distance event of the weekend saw Evan Bailey of New Ross collect 800m Freestyle gold in the 12-13-year-old age group in 9:34.21 ahead of Coolmine’s Killian O’Loughlin Brophy (9:46.41) and Ards’ Adam Barnes (9:46.42). In the 14-year-old age group Dolphins Jack Cassin touched in 9:21.21 ahead of City of Derry swimmer Mark Mallett (9:32.19).

Visiting teams Toronto and Hamilton Aquatics were first home in the girls and boys 400m Freestyle Relays earlier today. Toronto clocked 4:12.03 in the girl’s event ahead of Trojan in 4:19.50 with Hamilton Aquatics topping the podium in 3:55.41 in the boy’s event in 3:55.41, NAC took the Irish title in 3:58.79. In the senior events Limerick claimed the men’s title in 3:26.96 while the ladies from Otter had the fastest time after two heats in 3:59.33.

Competition continues tomorrow through to Sunday.

Full results available HERE.