New team in place to develop swimmers at City of Wakefield
City of Wakefield Swimming Club put the problems of training with Covid restrictions behind them as they achieved some great results at the Yorkshire Winter Championships.
Twenty swimmers from the club achieved qualifying times to enter the Yorkshire Swimming Association Winter Championships and went on to produce further excellent performances and times.
The Upper Age Championships for swimmers aged 13 years and over was held at John Charles Leisure Centre with Wakefield entering 13 swimmers across a variety of races.
Ella Burnett came sixth in three of her races - 50m freestyle, 50m backstroke and 50m butterfly.
Personal best times were achieved by all swimmers as were a handful of North East Regional qualifying times and it was a great weekend for Beth Jordan, Tara Karim, Tegan Fletcher, Will Byram, Dan Clipsham, Raygen Parkin, Daisy Ball, Grace Messenger, James Naylor, Luke Jenkinson, Mila Hughes and Madeline Taylor.
The Lower Age Championships for swimmers 12 years and under was held at Ponds Forge Leisure Centre, Sheffield, when James Sharp, Tom Woofindin, Jessie Booth, Naomi Broadley, Faye Harper and Ava Messenger attended.
Gold medals were won by Woofindin in the 50m butterfly and Sharp in the 50m freestyle.
Woofindin was also eighth in the 100m breaststroke, fifth in the 200m individual medley, fourth in the 50m backstroke and fifth in the 50m breastroke.
Sharp was fourth in the 100m backstroke, ninth in the 200m individual medley, second in the 100m freestyle and sixth in the 50m backstroke.
Faye Harper was seventh in the 50m backstroke.
Following the challenges that the club faced during Covid, with pool closures, this was an amazing achievement. The swimmers have worked relentlessly in their training sessions making up for many lost months in order to achieve the challenging times needed to qualify for the prestigious Yorkshire Championships.
On top of these challenges the club has also recruited a whole new coaching team after the previous head coach relocated back to their home town in the South of England.
A new coaching team is now in place with exciting plans to progress the club.
Harvey Williamson is now director of coaching and has a wealth of experience in the pool and on-deck.
He has had a successful swimming career; finalling many times at the Nationals and picking up multiple medals at the NERs and Yorkshires.
Harvey moved into coaching in 2015 and moved up the ranks at Doncaster Dartes.
He became the lead coach of the junior development programme of the club’s Elite training scheme, developing a high number of Yorkshire finalists and NER medalists and for this reason was selected as a skills coach on the County Talent Pathway in 2019 and 2020; the youngest ever coach to be selected.
Harvey will be overseeing the coaching for the club and leading the restructure of the squads and one of his key goals is to develop City of Wakefield Swimming Club into a full Pathway club.
Rob Taylor is now head coach and was previously a swimmer at both City of Leeds and City of Wakefield Swimming Club. He is a Level 2 qualified teacher and will work closely with Harvey in planning the training sessions to develop the swimmers.
City of Wakefield Swimming Club is always looking for new members. Training takes place across the Wakefield region, including at Normanton Leisure Centre and Pontefract’s Aspire at the Park Leisure Centre.
If you would like to find out more, see the club website or email [email protected]