AHEAD of a busy summer of sport, the best age group swimmers will descend on Aberdeen to compete in the Scottish Gas National Age Group Championships, which take place at the Aberdeen Aquatics Centre from 25 to 29 June.
Over 840 athletes representing over 90 clubs will compete over the five-day event, including 13-year-old Erraid Davies from Shetland, the youngest ever member of Team Scotland.
She will be joined by other Team Scotland members, Lucy Hope, Rachel-Louise Masson, Andrew McGovern, Jack Ness, Rachael O’Donnell and Hannah Miley, who will be representing Scotland at her third consecutive Commonwealth Games.
With the Games only a month away, Andrew McGovern explained the importance of competing at the event: “The Scottish Gas National Age Group Championships provide the perfect chance for some fast racing during a period of intense training.
“I’ll be racing the 100m backstroke and 100m freestyle; both events provide an excellent opportunity to further improve on skills and race strategy, so when it comes to the Games I’ll be firing on all cylinders.
“So far, the preparation has been going really well, I’ve seen some big improvements in the gym with John, while my physio, Alison, has done a great job of keeping me injury free over this period of tough training.”
Fife-based athlete Craig Bowman, who has been selected for the GBR squad heading to Holland in July for the European Junior Swimming Championships, will also be competing at the Age Group Championships.
For the majority of athletes competing, the Scottish Gas National Age Group Championships provide the perfect stage to compete against their peers before heading to Ponds Forge in July for the British National Age Group and Youth Championships.
Speaking ahead of the event 14 year-old Finlay Deans, from City of Aberdeen Swim Team (COAST), said: “I am really looking forward to competing at the Scottish Gas National Age Groups Championships, especially at the new Aquatics Centre.
“For me the event will be a step towards my end-of-season goals when competing at the ASA Age Groups in July and towards my longer term international success. These championships will be an opportunity for me to put all the practice into action and I love racing to win. I can’t wait!”
His team-mate, Eilidh Duthie (16), also commented: “I’ve been looking forward to the Scottish Age Groups for a while now and the excitement is building and I can’t wait to get racing in my home pool. I’m using the Age Group Championships as a step towards achieving my end-of-season goals at the British Youth’s in August and hopefully as a stepping stone towards future international success.
“The atmosphere at Age Groups is often especially memorable, as there is a great team atmosphere and it is always a very fun competition to race at. I’m also really looking forward to seeing all my friends and it will be good to race against the top swimmers in Scotland.”
Scottish Swimming, in partnership with Glasgow-based Quipu TV, will once again be providing a free-to-air live stream from the championships, broadcasting all sessions online as professional sports coverage.
The stream can be found online at www.scottishswimming.com/live
Forbes Dunlop, chief executive officer of Scottish Swimming, said: “The fact that there are around 840 competitors speaks volumes about the importance of this event. The quality of young swimmers coming through the pathway continues to be high, which bodes well for the future.
“On behalf of Scottish Swimming, I wish all athletes competing the very best and hope the event provides them with the ideal racing opportunity and experience ahead of a great summer of swimming, whether representing their country at the Commonwealth Games or European Championships, or their club at national level.”
Kevin Roxburgh, managing director of Scottish Gas, is excited about the partnership Scottish Gas and Scottish Swimming have formed for national events and commented: “Scottish Gas is proud of the partnership we have forged with Scottish Swimming, supporting swimmers of all levels from beginners to elite athletes.
“As a business we are passionate about supporting our people and our customers to invest in their wellbeing. Swimming is a great way to keep fit, relieve stress and have fun with your family. That is why it is wonderful to see so many bright young Scottish talents showing that an active childhood can lead to great achievements.”
The event is open to the public for a fee of £4 per morning and afternoon session, and £5 per final session, with the timings for each session listed below.
- Morning heats: from 08:45 (Wednesday–Sunday)
- Afternoon heats: from 13:00 (Wednesday–Saturday; 12:45 on Sunday)
- Evening finals: from 17:30 (Wednesday–Saturday; 17:00 on Sunday)
More information about the event and daily summary reports can be found at www.scottishswimming.com or www.facebook.com/scottishswimming
The event can also be followed on social media by using #SNAGS14 as hashtag, as well as on Scottish Swimming’s website, www.scottishswimming.com.
A new section, Swim Buzz, will provide users up-to-date information about the championships and other Scottish Swimming events, and can be visited at www.swimbuzz.co.uk
NOTES TO EDITORS
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Venue: Aberdeen Sports Village, Regent Walk, Aberdeen, AB24 1SX. For more information about the venue and details of location please click on the dedicated website: http://www.aberdeensportsvillage.com/
For any further information please contact Kirsten Phillips, Marketing Communications Manager, Scottish Swimming on 07730 661788 or by email to email@example.com
About Scottish Swimming
We are the national governing body for swimming in Scotland. Scottish Swimming represents our clubs, swim schools, aquatic disciplines, athletes, coaches and thousands of talented and committed volunteers across the entire swimmer pathway. We are focused on delivering in the following key areas to reach our vision to ensure that everyone can swim: learn to swim, participation in aquatic activities, club development, coaching partnerships and performance.
Once again sportscotland awarded Scottish Swimming one of the highest levels of funding for a sport’s governing body in Scotland, totalling £1,255,000. sportscotland investment provides opportunities for members involved in every aspect of our pathway. The funding also supports the area of governance, where we continue to strive for best practice. As our association is professionally managed, we can provide the framework within which our members and partners can flourish.
About Scottish Gas
Scottish Gas has been the principle partner of Scottish Swimming since 2009. The company have a commitment to look after their customers in as many ways as they can. Swimming allows Scottish Gas to show its support for the nation, put something back into Scotland’s communities and to inspire more people to take to the water and improve their health.
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