VICTORIA, B.C. – Nine members of the Inconnu Swim Club were in Victoria last weekend to compete at the 2017 BC Short Course Provincial Championships.
The meet hosts the best U18 swimmers in the province, and started last Thursday with the distance events. Brittany Welsh was the only swimmer to compete on the first day in the Women’s 800 Freestyle. Welsh swam extremely well, and was poised to have a successful weekend until she was derailed by a bout of food poisoning. She would come back to finish the last two days of competition, making the finals on the final day, but was noticeably suffering from fatigue.
Owen Lang and Alexander McDonald competed in their last Provincials in the U11 category. McDonald had best times in four of six events after competing two weeks prior where he made qualifying times to attend the meet. Lang had a very strong meet, and was able to get best times in all but one of his events, which helped to propel him to the finals every night. On the last day, he reached the podium with a second place finish in the 50 metre Freestyle.
Cameron Louie and Tytan Carson competed in the Boys 12-13 age group. They both made the finals a few times with a few some ups and downs along the way.
Eric Louie and Alex Hedges represented the Inconnu in the Men’s and Women’s age 14-15 categories. The pair made the finals in every event in which they competed, and both managed podium finishes on Sunday afternoon. Hedges found herself on the podium twice, with a silver in the 50 metre Freestyle followed with a bronze in the 100 metre Butterfly. Eric Louie meanwhile managed a gold medal in the 100 metre Butterfly.
The Men’s and Women’s 16 & Over category included swimmers Tate Haugan and Jayden Forster. Forster was able to make the finals in both of her backstroke events. Haugan meanwhile swam on the Friday and Sunday of the meet, taking time off on Saturday to compete in a mountain bike race. Though he only competed in four events, he was able to get best times in all of them.
Altogether it was a fabulous meet for all the athletes. Coach Steve Carson said that the swimmers competed hard all weekend and for the most part were rewarded with best times, with seven club records were broken over the weekend. Tytan Carson led the way with three, besting one of his own and setting two new records. Brittany Welsh, Tate Haugan, and Alex Hedges all broke their own club records as well. “One of my favorite things about this meet was having Owen Lang and Alex McDonald being the first to compete every day,” said Carson. “Having these two young boys step up every morning before their teammates and show them how to compete hard and leave everything out there was something that I would use as inspiration to the rest of the team. Sometimes the older athletes can over analyze a race, but when you’re young most of the time you just step up and put the pedal to the metal. All of these swimmers have bright futures ahead of them.”
Story submitted by Inconnu Swim Club coach Steve Carson, edited by Chris Newton.