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In May Joshua Holland aged 14 representing Hertford Swimming Club competed in the 50m Butterfly at the East Regional Long Course Championships held at the UEA Sportspark, Norwich. Joshua finished in third place with a time that qualified him for the Swim England Summer National Championships held a Ponds Forge Pool, Sheffield early August.
The top twenty four in the country in each age group are invited to swim in the British Championships and the next twenty are invited to the Swim England Championships.
Joshua competed in the heats in the morning session and finished in joint second place with a time of 27.78, a massive personal best and this qualified him for a place in the final that afternoon. In the final Joshua again lowered his time to 27.59 and finished in fifth place.
This is a fantastic achievement for Joshua who trains six times a week mainly at Hartham Pool. He is now ranked the eleventh fastest 14 year old in the country in the 50m Butterfly.
My experience in Sheffield by Joshua Holland -
At the ASA East Region Championships in May I achieved a national ranking in the 50m Butterfly which led to an invitation to compete in the 13/14 year old combined age group of the Swim England Summer National Meet. The meet was held on Sunday the 6th of August in the Ponds Forge international sports centre in Sheffield.
I went into the competition seeded 8th with a time of 28.37sec. I was extremely nervous and I didn't want to disappoint everyone at the club and my family who had been wishing me well. After an early start and a long warm up I swam a personal best of 27.78sec in my heat which put me in joint 2nd going into the final.
In the final I swam another personal best time of 27.59sec a 0.78sec improvement of my time going into the competition, gaining a very respectable 5th place finish in an tightly contested and extremely close final. I am very proud that in addition to coming 5th in the championships, my time puts me 11th for my age group in Great Britain.
I have to say an enormous thank you to Steve, as the head coach he gave me great support in training before the event and at poolside in Sheffield. Also a big thank you to the club for organising the extra early morning training sessions for me in the lead up to Sheffield.
Ashley Ransome also competed at the English Summer Nationals for the third year running in the women’s 17 and over 50m Breaststroke. In the heats, Ashley achieved the fastest heat swim of all competitors, swimming a 0.5 second personal best, which is no mean feat at the her age, qualifying her for the final the same evening. In the final, initially the scoreboard placed Ashley in 8th, but after an agonising wait, confirmation finally came to show that Ashley finished in the gold medal position and is the 2017 17+ 50m Breaststroke English National Champion.
Although Ashley was representing Staines SC where she trained whilst attending Royal Holloway University, she has been a member of Hertford SC since she was 7 which has helped her to achieve her long term goal in swimming. Ashley has commented that she would like to acknowledge the effort that Hertford SC has provided, especially head coach Steve Barber, has put into her swimming over the last 14 years and allowing her to train and compete for the club whilst at home.
Ashley has now finished her degree and started work a couple of days after Nationals. She is still considering what to do next with her swimming.
After his successful Regional Championships at Norwich Joshua has been invited to compete in the Swim England National Championships at Sheffield in early August in the 13/14 year age group 50 Butterfly.
He is ranked 30 in the UK and the top 24 compete at the British Championships and the next 20 English swimmers in the English Championships. This is a massive step up for Joshua and is a fantastic reward for both Joshua and Hertford for the hard work that he put in over the past year.
Many congratulations on this achievement.
Ashley Ransome has been invited to compete at the Swim England Summer Championships. This is the third year running that Ashley has qualified for this competition and we wish her well in Sheffield. Ashley spends a majority of her time training with Staines SC as she has away studying at Royal Holloway.