The B.C. Summer Swimming Association’s Provincial Championships was a long time coming for the Boundary Bay Bluebacks Swim Club.
The Tsawwassen club wrapped up their season August 19-21 in Kamloops with one of its best performances in recent memory.
The club sent 27 swimmers to the meet and came home with 15 medals including five by Keaton McGregor, three by Dylan Bradbury, two by Jack Thompson and Aaron Thomson, and one each by Thomas Denney, Chloe Mason and Alyssa Pace. In addition to the 15 podium placements, almost all went on to final heats in their respective events.
McGregor, won gold in the Division 4 100m backstroke, silver in the 50m freestyle (with a new club record) and bronze in the 100m freestyle.
Bradbury, won silver in the Division 5 50m butterfly.
Thomson, 19, a long-time club member who has qualified for provincials seven previous times, won his first ever provincial medal with a bronze in the 100m freestyle.
Other members of the B4 provincial team included: Kobe Burgess, Isla Lord, Kira Denney, Lily Morrison, Madison Dahl, Calvin Slinn, Marley Dodds, Olivia Barber, Rowan Christiansen, Miles McDonald, Jack Mason, Tyler Cui, Sophia Barber, Quinn Engelsjord, Faith Thomson, Adrian Riley, Cooper Dodds, Arjun Mangat, Jeanelle Thomas, Alyssa Pace.
“I am so proud of our Bluebacks!” said head coach Jeanelle Thomas. “After two seasons without swim meets they were so successful in their return to competition. Our athletes set goals for themselves, worked hard all season, bonded as a team, were leaders within the club and made a huge splash! I cannot wait to see what's next for these swimmers.”
The summer swim season began May 1 with approximately 100 athletes training at Winskill under the guidance of Thomas and assistant head coach Alyssa Pace. Over the years, the success of the club has come from the commitment, camaraderie, determination, and fun of the swimmers. You don’t have to look any further than the 27 qualifiers this year. Among the list are long time club members and perennial provincial team members: Barber, Kira Denney, Dahl, and Thomson.
The future of the club looks promising, thanks to the Bluebacks ‘B3’ program for six and under of which there were 34 young swimmers this year.
“This group are the future leaders and coaches of the club and we love watching the friendships they make along the way grow” says Thomas.
At nine, Morrison was the youngest swimmer to compete in Kamloops, finishing sixth in the Division 2 girl’s 50m butterfly.
The swimmers broke seven club records this season, which dated as far back as 2003. They include:
-Chloe Mason Girls Division 5 100m backstroke 1:15.49
-Keaton McGregor Division 4 50m freestyle 27.32
-Dylan Bradbury Division 5 50m butterfly 27.53
-Dylan Bradbury Division 5 100m butterfly 1:04.10
-Division 5 boys 200m medley relay (McGregor, Thompson, Bradbury, Denney) 2:05.94
-Division 5 boys 200 free relay. (Denney, Thompson, Bradbury, McGregor)
-Division 8 girls 200m free relay (Jeanelle Thomas, Olivia Barber, Alyssa Pace, Chloe Mason) 2:06.86