SWIMMING: Synchro

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Rugby Swimming Club’s Synchro Section took to the road last weekend when competing in the Scottish National Age Group Open Championships.

The Event, held in Glasgow, is one of the largest in the synchro calendar and this year attracted over 200 Swimmers, representing 17 Clubs from all over the UK.

Rugby entered their largest ever contingent with 14 swimmers making the long journey North and, in line with a fantastically successful 2011, Rugby returned with a cluster of medals.

Leading the way in the strong and highly competitive Individual categories was Sophie Randle, who registered two bronze medals in the 13 / 14 years age group - both within the technical Figures event and the Solo routines to music.

In the Figures competition, Lucy Rouse (16th) and Megan Walsh (17th) both performed well to acquire ‘top 20’ placings.

In the younger under 12 category, Olivia Walker finished 19th and, both Emily Durkin and Isobel Reed, competed hard and gained some wonderful experience for next season.

In the Duets, Emily and Isobel joined forces to finish 7th in the under 12 age group and Megan was joined by Charlotte Powers to match that placing in the 13 / 14 years event.

However, Rugby were to end Day 1 of competition with a further medal when Sophie Randle was joined by Lucy Rouse to claim an impressive Bronze in only their second competition together, ahead of higher ranked pairings from some of the UK’s strongest Clubs.

After a well earned rest, Rugby were back in the pool for a second day of competition.

In the recreational Duets, Meredith Whiting and Zoe Hart swam well against older opponents to earn a highly credible 4th place. Rugby also tasted ‘ultimate’ success, when the powerful trio of Phoebe Walsh, Emily Firth and Hannah Peake proved to be the only qualifiers (by required Skills Level) for the Open Technical and Free Duet.

The girls gave the crowd two treats when performing both of their routines with precision and flair and were pleasingly rewarded with their gold medals.

The final category was the Combination Team event where Sophie Randle, Lucy Rouse, Alice Old, Charlotte Powers, Megan Walsh, Zoe Hart, Meredith Whiting and Maja Nicholson brought further success for the travelling party.

Despite a good Leeds team proving to be too strong, Rugby excelled in beating the Manchester-based Trafford Club to collect a superb silver medal.

As always, Rugby were indebted to Head Coach, Hannah Dudley and her assistant, Linda Peake - both ably guiding the girls through a tough and demanding week-end schedule.

Special mention also to Ellie Hudson who travelled to Scotland to support her team colleagues despite injury preventing her participation within the Competition.

Rugby’s focus now turns to the UK National Age Group competition in four week’s time. Any success at the Country’s premier event would cap an already great year. Good luck girls...

If you think you could be part of Rugby’s future success within this Olympic sport, please contact Hannah Dudley at: dudz23@hotmail.com