Over the summer period and since the start of the school year Dunoon swimmers have been involved in a number of events and activities.
At the Queen’s Baton Relay celebration at the stadium in early July, the Club asked the public to guess what would be Michael Jamieson’s best time at the forthcoming games in the 200 breaststroke. Young Chloe Cassidy from Sandbank correctly guessed Michael’s silver medal winning time and won the cash prize.
A number of swimmers enjoyed attending several events at the games and coach Speth Black was delighted to be given 2 tickets by the Club for one of the finals nights. She took along President Jim and they enjoyed a fabulous night of swimming from the Scots (as well as the other countries!).
Nicky Ritchie and Rachel Turnbull, both aged 13, were selected to attend a residential young leaders’ training weekend before the Games. Organized by Scottish Swimming, the course brought together youngsters aged 13 – 16 from 18 of the West District Clubs to learn about event organization, leadership and other skills to help them to work with their own clubs and others in leading and generating a good team spirit and organizing activities.
Six swimmers competed in the Scottish Open Water Championships held at Loch Venachar in August. Unfortunately the weather was atrocious but despite that, young Joshua Colquhoun completed the novice 1K race coming in 4th, while Neil Lamont, Nicky Ritchie and Rachel Turnbull fought through the wind and waves to successfully finish the 2K event. The final races in the Open Water Grand Prix Series were due to take place at East Kilbride on 7 September but the water quality was adversely affected by algae causing the championships to be postponed.
The Argyll and Clyde squad, including 9 Dunoon swimmers, had a fantastic weekend training and fun in Campbeltown last month – enjoying surfing at the Westport beach, as well as extremely good combined training sessions finishing with a time trial at the Campbeltown pool.
The next weekend saw the team fill a bus and travel to Kilmarnock for their annual Centenary Gala. They did well and special mention must go to Caitlin Kennedy and Erin Malloch who swam all their races in the age group above theirs. The team was beaten by strong opposition from the home team as well as Rutherglen and Inverclyde, but there were some encouraging performances from the youngsters. The other swimmers at Kilmarnock were Ciaran Bonnar, Andrew Longster, Ross Colquhoun, Finan Kennedy, Oscar MacGillivray, Finlay Martin, Joshua Colquhoun, Alistair Gibson, Connor Kennedy, Alan Stewart, Ethan Clothier, Kyle Martin, Rhys Meyer-McDonagh, Nicky Ritchie, Evan Meyer-McDonagh, Jamie Dominick, Kyle Dominick, Neil Lamont, Orla Colquhoun, Sinead Kennedy, Anya MacGillivray, Eilidh Mitchell, Georgia Cowan, Raigan Malloch, Katie Mitchell, Kayleigh Hartley-Watson, Rosie MacDonald, Mollaidh Martin, Katy Marshall, and Rachel Turnbull.
On 6 and 7 September the West District sprint championships were held at the Sir Matt Busby pool in Bellshill. 1000 swimmers filled a very hot and very noisy pool area, and Dunoon’s two entrants produced a plethora of personal best times. Neil Lamont in the 15/16 age group swam 50 fly, 100 IM and 50 breaststroke, all in times that were 2 seconds faster than his previous best, while 12 years old Connor Kennedy swam 50 metres in all strokes as well as the 100 IM and in 4 of the events improved tremendously in his times and in his ranking in the field.
This weekend sees the Argyll & Clyde Championships at Helensburgh, with a big Dunoon entry taking on opposition from the other 4 Argyll clubs and Inverclyde.