The young swimmers from Jeffreys Bay have got off to a flying start in the 2010 swim season. Already several first places have been recorded in races ranging from 25 m to the more gruelling Mile swim that was held.
What is perhaps even more pleasing is to see how the youngsters have put their heads down and trained hard all winter in preparation for the upcoming swim season.
Working on stroke can seem boring to swimmers who just want to race and see how fast they can go but with a mixture of sprinting, stroke work and with fun and games like Marco Polo in the pool, a number of J’Bay swimmers have improved dramatically during the long winter months.
One of them is Andre Saunders (10 years old), who has been training with the Kouga Swim Club since he was six. “I stopped doing karate because I want to concentrate on my swimming and have listened in training and worked hard this winter”, said Andre.
“My coach has taught us that we don’t have to be scared of butterfly and he showed us how we must swim it and some tricks that we must do when we get tired. I tried it last weekend at a gala in Port Elizabeth and managed to win my race”.
“One day I want to be a Springbok butterfly swimmer and maybe even go to the Olympic Games”, added a chuffed Andre.
Another swimmer who has had an excellent start to the season is Lodewyk Van Biljon who won the 75 m dash at the Gamtoos River last weekend. “It was a great weekend for me because I won two races in Port Elizabeth on the Saturday and then had a good swim at the Gamtoos on Sunday”, said Lodewyk.
These results were backed up with a 3rd place for Lodewyk in the 500m at the first Kouga Express EPA Swim Challenge Series in the beginning of October.
The Ellis brothers have also got off to a great start to the 2010 swim season with Pieter winning the 500m swim at the Swim Challenge and then he won the Gamtoos Mile in the U/13 division despite only being 9 years old. Older brother Danie claimed the silver medal at both these events.
Michelle Strydom and Wilmein Van Biljon have also showed early form this season and it seems that it will only be a matter of time and some more hard training before one of them claims a gold medal in either the pool or open water.
The Kouga Swim Club has commenced with Open Water swim training at Marina Martinique. Tuesday and Thursday mornings they all meet at 06:15 am at the Phase 2 gate and on Friday afternoons at 4 Pm at the same gate. Non club members are welcome to join in the training sessions at R 50 per session.