Berkhamsted youngsters bag a medal haul at Watford meet

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A strong squad from Berkhamsted Swimming Club travelled expectantly to the Watford Middle Distance & Sprints meet on Sunday and did not disappoint.

The meet began with gold in the 400m freestyle for both Tom Strakosch and Charley Stevens. Tom’s winning time was both a county qualifying time and club record, with Charley also setting a female club best.

Tom Weston and Jack Filer (PB) followed these swims with golds in the boys’ 200 IM, before Stevens set her second club best of the day as she took silver in her 200m IM.

For the boys, James Corner showed he is gaining endurance with an eight-second improvement in his 200m IM, while Izzie Painter also improved by nearly seven seconds.

In the 50m backstroke, Corner’s success continued with a CQT – chopping off almost four seconds for fourth place.

Chris Nel and Weston took first and second, with Nel taking club best and the club’s first regional time of the day, while Owen Strakosch bagged a PB, Filer took gold and Tom Strakosch won silver in their age groups.

In the same event for the girls, Roisin Clarke bagged bronze and a CQT, while there were PBs from Helena Martin, Aoife Hanling, Izzy Sansom and Jenny Atwill.

In the 200m backstroke, Nel and Weston again finished first and second in PB times, with Peter Lever just missing a medal with his own PB in fourth.

Ollie Martin impressed with an eight-second PB and Tom Strakosch set yet another club best with gold in the open.

Izzy Sansom gained her first CQT of the year, also in the 200m backstroke, while Roisin Clarke also improved her PB after Izzie Painter had improved by over seven seconds.

The successes continued in the 200m backstroke, with Jess Potts setting her own PB, club best and gaining a CQT along with bronze, while Hazza Horwood-Jones and Ellen Northwood also set PBs.

The next RQTs came courtesy of Jordan Northwood and Abbie Hurst in the 200m breaststroke – claiming gold and bronze, respectively.

Hurst’s time was also a club best, before Ellie MacDonald improved to go sub-three minutes for the first time.

In the 50m butterfly, Corner, Owen Strakosch, Ollie Martin, Nel, Weston, Lever and Adam Hawkswood all set PBs, before Jordan Northwood improved the club record for silver and Filer took the 16 years club best in a PB for gold.

Helena Martin, Ellen Northwood and Hanling improved their 50m butterfly PBs and Potts then took silver and a club best for the 14 year olds, pipping Northwood in their personal battle. That was followed by PBs for Stevens and MacDonald.

Nel took another victory in the 50m freestyle with PBs from Lever, Hawkswood and Filer, then Sam Murcott took a CQT with his own 50m freestyle and Tom Strakosch went sub-28 for the first time.

For the girls, Grace Payne, Ellen Northwood, Hazza Horwood-Jones and Jenny Atwill all set PBs, while Stevens and MacDonald took silver and bronze in their respective age groups.

Nel, Lever and Weston took second, third and fourth in the 200m freestyle, followed by Jordan Northwood winning the 15 years age group in a club best and RQT.

Amelie Baker smashed her PB for fourth place, followed by Atwill getting her 200 Free CQT.

In the 200m butterfly, Ellen Northwood gained her first ever regional time, while the 50m breaststroke saw Nel take another silver and Lever gain another PB.

Filer won silver and Grace Payne improved her PB, before the meet finished with silvers for MacDonald and Atwill.

The club’s other competitors on the day were Lottie Priestley, Amy Pemberton, Amy Stoker, Niamh Clarke, Elly Sansom and Izzie Soulsby.