April 17, 2018
Taylor Smith and Brooklyn Parliament joined forces with Kelowna and took part in the Canadian Westerns Swim Championships in Victoria. The four day competition is set up like a National/International swim meet and features teams from BC, Alberta, Saskatchewan, Manitoba and our 2 western Territories.
Taylor Smith (15) qualified for Senior Nationals, the pinnacle of Canadian swimming standards, in the 100 back (1:06.63) and 200 back (2:22.30) , both in club record times. Both swims earned her a top 8 Final Swim in Victoria.
Taylor is the first National Qualifier in Orca swimming going back twenty years. If Orca "oral" history can be trusted, the last Summerland Orca swimmer to qualify for Senior Nationals is Marcus Krieger, now a thirty-something teacher at Princess Margaret High School (what did people do before Internet databases?).
Brooklyn Parliament bettered her own club record in the 100 freestyle in a time of 1:02.12. Brooklyn also took part in two KWIC team relays, and had a personal best as a starter in the 4x100 Free Relay only to see it not count due to another team member's disqualification.
My takes on the meet:
-BC women dominate the field. Every top 8 had a minimum of 3 BC female swimmers and many of them finishing in the medals. We will definitely recognize names of our BC athletes heading into the Olympics.
-Alberta Men are the ones to beat. Guaranteed to see some of these names in the Olympics in 2-6 years.
-Okanagan has some fierce competitors. Between Salmon Arm, Kelowna right through our valley to Penticton, the Okanagan swimmers had some very impressive swims. You DON'T have to live in the big cities to swim fast. It can be done right here in Canada's Paradise.
-These bigger meets are just another meet, and yet they are not. It must be what the Football Coaches say about the Super Bowl. It's just another game and yet it isn't. There's just little details, like the amount of teams from small towns we usually don't get the opportunity to compete against: Medicine Hat, Beaumont, Moose Jaw, Brandon. It's like a massive celebration of the sport of swimming.
-On Saturday Emil and I issued a challenge to the swimmers: Introduce yourself to 10 different people and start your swimming network. The swimmers were shy at first but they went around trying to meet new people. I did the same. I still have friends I met at swim meets more than 30 years ago. Our Nanaimo trip this weekend is partly because I swam against the head coach there, Scott Flood when we were 10 years old. My parents best friends are swim parents they met long ago (probably while volunteering at a swim meet).
We are almost 1/4 of the way to our $10,000 goal!!
CarysAlmas still holds the lead with $325 raised, but she's closely followed by ranjin2011 who's raised $300. More importantly both swimmers have attained the highest level of fundraising and will receive the Orca WaterBottle, Orca Toque, Orca Mesh Bag, AND Orca Hoodie. Way to go!!!
Just as a reminder:
0-$99 = Orca Water Bottle
$100-$199= Orca Water Bottle and Orca Toque
$200-$299= Orca Water Bottle, Orca Toque and Orca Mesh Bag
$300+ = Orca Water Bottle, Orca Toque and Orca Mesh Bag AND Orca Hoodie.
All this plus Top 3 Grand Prizes and lots of door prizes at the event.
You can register and start your siwm-a-thon campaign at the following link:
Up coming Meet:
May 5th. West Kelowna: LAST Jamboree for all I-Can-Swim athletes: swimmers can attend the Tues/Thur sessions leading up to the event only if they are entered in the Jamboree.
May 18-20: Kelowna (LC): Age Group 1+2 and Regional Tier 1 Qualifiers
May 25-27: Salmon Arm Regional Champs (SC): Regional Group and Age Group (non Tier 1+ 2 Qualifiers)
May 26th: Kamloops Distance Time Trial: AG1+2
June 1-3: Kamloops TRU Invitational (LC): Open to both Regional and Age Group
Enjoy the sun and budding trees.