A strong performance in its second team event of the year saw Wisbech Swimming Club win the Patterns’ Trophy Gala at the Hudson Leisure Centre, Wisbech, on Saturday.
The impressive Wisbech squad, including several young swimmers new to competition, took the trophy for only the second time in the gala’s history.
Wisbech welcomed South Lincs, March Marlins and First Strokes to the Hudson, for fast, close racing from which a clear leader only emerged in the second half of the evening.
Wisbech won 15 individual events and the relay, and took 16 second places and five thirds, while four swimmers – Kian Cooper (9 years 25m butterfly), Erin Doherty (10 years 50m butterfly), Ben Eden (13/U 50m breaststroke) and Esme Gilbert (11/U 50m butterfly) – broke the cut-off times for their events, which under the Patterns’ format means their times and positions were honoured, but they scored no points on the night.
Wisbech topped the event with a spectacular winning performance in the 10 × 25m cannon relay, finishing on 159 points, while First Strokes (114), South Lincs (101) and March Marlins (99) fought a close battle behind. Delighted Wisbech head coach Greg Marsters praised his squad for their fast swimming and great team spirit.
The Patterns’ win came just a fortnight after Wisbech took a strong fifth place in the County Relay Championship, missing out on fourth place to City of Ely by just five points.
The competition followed three sessions of tough swimming in which Wisbech generated some fine performances, including a silver medal for Joe Whittaker in the 200m 11-year backstroke and a bronze medal for Ben Knowles in the 13-year 200m individual medley. Finalists were Sam Smith (two), Mary O’Neill (two), Beth Dennis, Esme Gilbert, Alex Gallagher and Harry Smith.
Wisbech swimmers are back in action for the final County Championships’ sessions at Whittlesey on February 25/26, before the club launches into a busy season of league events, beginning with Round 1 of the Anglian League on March 4.