Irish Age Groups Division 2 was held over 4 days from 29 June to 2 July in University Limerick Sports Arena. This national facility made quite an impression on Darcy and at aged only 10 she was imagining what it would be like to attend The University of Limerick in the future. Eighty nine swimming clubs and a record number of 731 swimmers from all provinces descended upon Limerick for this National Final. There was an air of excitement from the start as this was the pinnacle of the swimming year for Division 2 swimmers!
Throughout the season Darcy achieved the qualifying times to enable her to enter Irish Age Groups Division 2. Whilst training with Sliabh Beagh ASC four times a week, she worked on her technique, built up her fitness, soaked in the advice from her coaches and mentally prepared herself for the challenge of competing in a large arena. In this National Final, swimmers were required to compete in preliminaries in the morning and finals in the afternoon. Darcy knew she had to manage her rest, maintain energy levels, observe proper warm-up and warm-down procedures, remain focused and most of all have fun each day.
The hard work paid off as Darcy took home SILVER for 200m Breaststroke and BRONZE for 100m Breaststroke smashing her qualifying entry times and setting new PBs in the process.
Darcy came in fourth place and set new PBs in 100m Freestyle, 200m Freestyle, 200m Backstroke, 200IM, and 400m Freestyle. She was happy to have achieved the entry qualifying times for all these events and to have had the opportunity to put her swimming skills to the test in a wide range of events at a National Final.
Darcy is delighted with the experience competing at Irish Age Groups Division 2 has given her and she is looking forward to the new swimming season with a host of new PBs under her belt. She would like to thank her coaches at Sliabh Beagh ASC for their hard work this year. Onwards and upwards for the new season!
Caolán also had a good weekend. He swam with great style in the 200m breast. He also competed in 100m back and 100m breast achieving PBs in both. To achieve qualifying times for a National event requires a great commitment and a lot of hard swimming, so well done. Caolán thoroughly enjoyed the competition and he hopes to return in the future.
The Club wishes to congratulate both Darcy & Caolán on their performances over the weekend. At this level of competition nothing comes easy and without the combined skills of technical proficiency, excellent fitness in all energy levels, race experience during the year and applied attendance at training, progress at this level and to the next is unlikely. Also a massive thank you has to go to both Team Manager Kirsten & Regina for making sure the whole weekend went swimmingly!! Without our parents and all the support you give to the swimmers and Club. All the early morning and evening training sessions, long trips to galas, none of this is would be possible.
The club wishes everyone a great summer, enjoy the break and we look forward to seeing you in the new season commencing September 2017.