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2019 - Essex Mini League Round 2

Coach John's Blog

Saturday saw the 2nd round of the Essex Mini League which gives us a chance to expand the number of swimmers we have competing for Halstead swimming club. I n our first season back after several years we have had a promising start having notched up two 3rd place positions. Yesterday there were some tremendous swimming from the first timers representing the club and therefore special mention to Chloe J, Isabelle,Beau and Lacey Mae. They will have gained great experience on the night and will only improve with the work rate and keenness they are showing in training. The Mini League is a competition that has upper limits on time, meaning anyone going faster than that time given are automatically disqualified, strange i know but the intention is to give all clubs a chance rather than swim your number 1 swimmer all the time. The other benefit from my point of view is that you will often find swimmers coming through that had not been identified previously. That was the case last night. Well done to all that swam and coming 3rd behind Chelmsford and Harlow, both of which are a top 4 county club, was no mean feat.


Coach John's Blog


A very successful day was brought to an end after some amazing swims throughout. Starting off with Phoebe Hale whose fabulous technique helped her through several pb swims as did Rosie Candler whose competitive spirit will take her a long way. Emi Rayner, although down on times still had the ability to pick up several golds.Emily Kay produced all day but the crowning glory was her first ever gold in the 100 free. Rosie Birds consistency is a major point and is only a matter of time before her strength comes into play before her times will drop.Rose Vinter had an average day for her but she learns from each swim, likewise Sophie Andrews quietly smashed her pb on several swims. Harmonie Fry Oliff gradually getting back to near her best with 5 golds while Lucy Tyson is swimming better than ever, as are her brothers James and Matthew who are coming down on time every time they compete.It will not be long before Sophie Tyrie's consistency will help her become one of the best swimmers in the club. Not to be outdone is brother Oliver who is gradually coming into some good form.William Blunkell, of late has suddenly sprung from nowhere to produce swims i didn't believe possible yet.Thomas Robb also improved times by some distance as did Franklin Farren Ladkin who is starting to understand what is needed to swim fast.Jamie Hall was on fire while pb's were coming out thick and fast. Thomas Gubbins Swift also swam pb's especially the 200 free. Emma Southgate, slightly off colour still swam a very good 100 fly while Millie Amerio was close to pb's despite not training much of late.Ben Styman- Heighton and Rhys Marriott seem to fight out every race and their efforts led to some exciting swims. Daisy Turp Daws quietly goes about her business and never lets herself down, as does Ellie May Bell who continues to impress on her Breaststroke. Alesha Sycamore swam severall pb's, as did Rosie Candler, especially on Breaststroke. Amber Harvey and Mary Murray had excellent swims on all events, while the Haylock sisters never let you down with their efforts and the experience they are gaining will be invaluable in the future.Maya Scott's improvement over the last 6 months has been amazing and her fly especially is top notch. She may have to watch her back with sister Anya after her first open meet.2 swimmers i rate quite highly but are for ever doubting their own talent are Rose and Alice Forster; once they start to believe then we will really see them come through. Keira Harris is another whose consistency will eventually lead itself into fine swims. Harry Salmon had a fantastic day with smashed times in every event and Jack Weaver gives everything for his pb's.Watching Arwen Mortimer compete is pure joy. You know that she will give every ounce in every swim and today was no different.Skye Penningtons improvement on Breaststroke is very pleasing, as is Isabella Lewis who is adapting well to her new action. Abigail Gowers had one of the best swims of the day with a very aggressive 100 free. Kathryn Daynes did as she always does and leads from the front.Matthew Shakallis should be very happy with all of his swims while open swimmer Charlie Morgan never gave up and should be quite content with his efforts.Olivia Duncombe and Ellie May Bell can take pride in their efforts, while Sadie Marie has an excellent technique that will help her as she gets stronger.Ruby Weaver is another who never lets herself or you down and had quite a profitable day. Amber Harvey will have to keep working as she did today to keep brother Jaiden at bay. Jaiden was awesome on his fly. Special mention to both Edward Maguire and Jaiden Harvey, both competing in the 9 years age group and first open meet; their efforts were outstanding as was old timer in that age group Archie Walsh, between them they racked up most of the medals.Edward Kirtland and Finley Ames Tull improve on each swim. Jack Smith was slightly down on time but gave a good account of himself none the less. "Old man" of the team picked up gold in the open Back and he is an example to all younger club members as to what you can achieve by sticking at it.Daisy Candler had excellent fly and free swims while new lad Lewis Wilson is settling in nicely.
I don't normally pick out exceptional performances but i chose the following simply because i didn't expect it. They are Jamie Hall, Rhys Marriott, Phoebe Hale, Natalie Jenkins, and maybe the best on the day in Harry Salmon.
This is possibly the best performance from any open meet in terms of success and hopefully Roger agrees and it proves this club is getting better and better with every competition. Well done to every single one of you.
Just a quick mention to all the volunteers who went about their various tasks with efficiency and no fuss. Thanks and well done. The swimmers appreciate it as do the Coaches.

17/03/2019 BIG DAVE'S BLOG


Another normal Sunday swimming gala for Halstead Swimming Club.

Well I don't think so…. OMG where did that come from everyone.

Morning session -

Massive effort by all and PB going on all over the place. Ruby Weaver and Charlotte Nicholls in the 50m breaststroke and Lewis Wilson with a massive PB in 200m breaststroke and 100m freestyle. Franklin Farren what a PB in your 100m freestyle. You made your mum cry so hard. Matt Bale what a great race and a massive PB in your 200m breaststroke, you gave it all and Thomas Nicholls getting a PB in 100m freestyle and Thomas Bale breaking 1:01 for 100m freestyle.

Apologies, i missed the boys 50m freestyle with all getting PB’s and Jack Weaver with a PB, you most definitely giving it all see missing the 100m freestyle helped. Remember to sign in Jack J.

Eloise Conway just missing out by the smallest time on PB in 100m fly when pushing hard for years. PB’s will get harder but you’re a credit to Halstead Swimming cClub and thank you for the lovely chats over the last two days

Second sesson -

Another great effort by all and PB’s for Ruby Weaver 3:30 and Jasmine Bale 2:52 in the 200m IM. Phoebe Hale just missing out but great effort. b for Phoebe, Ruby and Emily kay in 50m backstroke but Rose Vinter and Sophie Tyrie just missing out, but you both just keep on smiling after each race which is lovely to see. Oliver Tyrie PB’d in 100m IM, just imagine if you were there with a couple of minutes to get ready but great effort don’t change.

Only one girl in 200m freestyle and yes she did it Paddy, 02:55 Emily Kay, you made me feel so proud.

Sophie, what a great effort in your 100m backstroke brilliant first (50m think it was PB) and you worked hard right to the end. Well done Phoebe on your 100m just outside a PB.

Great effort for Lewis and Matt on the last event 100m you both work hard.

Thanks to Julian ‘sign me in Weaver’, Mike Nicholls and Matt Bale for making sure the swimmers got to the right place, and all the parents for making it a great weekend!


Now it time for me to find my voice…. see you all tomorrow thank you….

16/03/2019 JOHN'S BLOG


Basildon open meet. A group of swimmers travelled to Basildon today to compete in the above meet. To say they were outstanding is an understatement. Eloise Conway, having been at the club for 10 years plus provided a fabulous 100 free PB which had eluded her for a couple of years. This set her up for 2 very good fly and IM swims. In the 400 free Ethan Howard, Lewis Wilson, Thomas Nicholls, Franklin Farren and Thomas Bale smashed their PB ‘s by a considerable margin. Matt bale, the oldest swimmer there improves with every swim and at the other end of the scale our 9 year olds Phoebe Hale, Emi Rayner and Rosie Candler, gained valuable experience with again Emi medalling in her events. Charlotte Nicholls is becoming a very solid performer and her consistency is the key having performed well on all events. Jasmine Bale is becoming a very strong athlete and evidence of this came in her 200 Breaststroke with a great PB. Ruby Weaver is quietly coming along nicely and is always reliable with 1 or 2 PB’s, as is brother Jack who is starting to realise his potential.(not sure "quietly" was apt when talking about the Weaver clan) Evie Williams having recently come back to the sport after 2 years out is not far away from becoming a good sprinter by posting some very good PB’s from all swims. One of the most pleasing of swims came from Rose Vinter. Rose has had a tough couple of years when it didn't seem to happen for her and then with a bang she obliterated her 100 free swim. The confidence will now grow hopefully for further improvement. Possibly the best performances came from Chloe and Ella Linney. Their improvement has shot them several places forward in their age groups with excellent free and fly swims. Emily Kay smashed her 50 free even with an injured foot and there is more to come. Sophie has the potential to become one of the leading swimmers at Halstead and although she has recently not performed to her best she came up trumps today with a PB free swim showing the aggression that had been missing. Brother Oliver is suddenly putting in performances that a little while ago were nowhere near, he is growing up and getting stronger and his fly swim was magnificent. Isabella Lewis is getting to grips with a new action on her Breaststroke and it seems to be paying dividends. Jack Smith was a finger nail away from breaking the club 100 back record but consoled himself with a gold medal; next time Jack. My favourite swim came from Thomas Bale in the 200 free by turning out very even split times to smash his time by over 6 seconds.

Again the support we received from our parents was superb and i know the swimmers appreciate it; bring on Sunday.

06/03/2019 JOHN'S BLOG


The National Junior League team sheet is now in the notice board. I know i said the same a year ago but we have since had new members and i would like to reiterate what i said. The Junior league is the most prestigious junior competition in the Country, It is Nationwide culminating in a grand final We are affiliated to the London Region and whilst we are a long way off from being with the elite we are improving each year.

The competition lends itself to making sure we have the strongest team possible available for each round. There are 3 rounds, April, May, June. I would ask, as we are a relatively small club for all swimmers to make themselves available for selection. This is the sort of competition where Grandparents, aunts, uncles and the rest of the family would be highly entertained by their siblings in a friendly but competitive gala. Because of our size any dropouts have a huge effect on our ability to be placed higher up in the league so i would ask for everyone to be available. Often the biggest obstacle is being able to get to the gala but if there are any problems please let myself or any official know and we can sort out lifts. Each year i find myself getting a little more excited by the prospect of Halstead progressing, and we are half way in from a 5 year turnaround with our juniors to not only do well but also progress to the senior teams. Enough said, i'm rambling now, but please put a tick by your name. Many Thanks JOHN.

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