Big weekend for Lurgan swimmers

Ben Wiffen and Robbie Renwick (2010 Commonwealth gold medal winner). INLM1812-242con
Ben Wiffen and Robbie Renwick (2010 Commonwealth gold medal winner). INLM1812-242con

BEN Wiffen (16) and Caitlin Wylie (13) represented Lurgan Amateur Swimming Club in the Dave McCullagh Memorial Championships at the weekend.

This event was held in the National Aquatic Centre in Dublin and incorporated the Celtic Tri-Nations Championship.

Caitlin Wylie. INLM 1812-243con

Caitlin Wylie. INLM 1812-243con

Both swimmers performed well against stiff competition from other countries. Ben’s qualifying events were 400m individual medley, 1,500m, 400m, 200m and 100m freestyle.

After meeting his personal best time for the 100m free style on Friday morning he was overawed to be an unexpected finalist for the 1,500m freestyle in the evening session.

He found himself competing against the three representatives from the national teams of Ireland (Andrew Meegan), Scotland (Martin Cremin) and Wales (Tom Allen).

Although he did not achieve his personal best time, he did not let this put him off, and came back the following day to swim the 200m freestyle close to his expected time.

Ben continued to perform well in the rest of his events.

For Caitlin at the age of 13, competing in a gala of this magnitude is a major achievement and shows the capabilities of one of Lurgan’s rising young stars.

Taking part in the 100m backcrawl event, her determined and power fuelled effort saw her record a personal best time of 1:16.39 much to the delight of her coach and team mates.

Although only competing in one race this time, she was very close to qualifying in other events, and it is anticipated that by next season she will be a major competitor in her age group at this competition.

Head Coach, Dorothy Johnston and Team Manager, Jonathan Wiffen, were extremely pleased with the swimmers’ performances and would passed on their congratulations to them both.