Stingray Swim Club had an excellent outing in Kingston, Jamaica last week, coming home with an overall team championship, 34 meet records, four high point award winners and a new Cayman Islands Amateur Swimming Association Long Course Record.
The CIASA record was set by Sam Dakers in the boys 9-10 200 meters breaststroke in 3 minutes, 41.17 seconds, shattering the old record of 3:56.94.
Stingray’s team of 25 swimmers, competing against established Jamaican teams – the main ones being Y-Speedos, Tornadoes and Marlins – with over 100 swimmers, produced excellent results with the highest scoring swims of the meet.
Points were awarded based on quality of swims rather than overall placing which gave a much needed advantage to quality over quantity.
“This meet is a long-standing tradition in Kingston – and to see some of the older records fall was great fun,” said Stingray’s head coach David Pursley.
“The time standard point system, along with the opportunity to set new meet records made for some excellent motivation to our swimmers.”
Nine of Stingray’s swimmers were 12 and under and their development over the past year, guided by coach Tim Leonhart, has been tremendous.
Pursley said: “Coach Tim’s swimmers came through with the highest scoring swims to give us the lead. Our older swimmers have been in heavy training and had to step up to the challenge even when tired. They responded to the challenge very well and had some outstanding performances.”
The team’s camaraderie shone through in the relays. Stingray swimmers won five of the six entered relays.
Pursley said: “It wasn’t just the victories but also the individual performances in the relays.
“The overwhelming majority of the relay splits were faster than the individual performance earlier in the meet.
“It shows the character of the team and the willingness to sacrifice and give it their all for the sake of the team – and the 13-14 girls were even able to walk away with meet records in both of their relays.”
With the excitement of the meet behind them, 15 of the club’s seniors stayed in Kingston an extra two days to train in the 50m National Stadium pool.
Pursley said: “I was honestly just as excited for the training after the meet as the competition itself.
“We unfortunately do not have a 50m Olympic sized pool here in Cayman. Our swimmers have been making it work at the highest levels with half the pool that is used in competition but it is vitally important that we take full advantage of what little opportunity we get to swim in a full size pool.
“We did just that, and in two days swam 30,000m over the course of 10 hours, helping to build the aerobic foundation we need to carry us through to December.”
The next home meet on the Stingray Swim Club calendar is the Mike Lockwood Memorial Pirates Week Meet, from Nov. 19-22. Meet packages and registration forms will be available shortly.
HIGH POINTS AWARDS
Catriona MacRae, 15-16 girls
Jordan Crooks, 11-12 boys
Ria Plunkett, 11-12 girls
Corey Westerborg, 9-10 boys
For more information, contact Kathy Jackson on [email protected]