Young swimmers turn on the style for Great Yarmouth in Dereham gala

Great Yarmouth swimmers line up for a team picture at the Dereham gala. Picture: Rhianna James

Great Yarmouth swimmers line up for a team picture at the Dereham gala. Picture: Rhianna James - Credit: Archant

Dereham Otters hosted their Iceni Open Gala over the weekend and 20 swimmers from Great Yarmouth SC took part.

Many were hoping to gain qualification times for the Norfolk County Championships in January while

others were making the most of a last opportunity to qualify for the forthcoming Winter Regional Championships.

Great Yarmouth Swimmers performed consistently well throughout the weekend, with a high percentage of personal best times being achieved across all the age groups, which was pleasing for head coach Liam Harvey and coach Rhianna James.

The two outstanding swimmers of the gala were Ryan Webb (15) and Tommy Chandler (15), who provided spectators with race after race of close finishes, pushing each other hard and often coming away with the gold and silver between them.

Tommy demonstrated that he is coming back into excellent form, particularly in his breaststroke, where he convincingly took gold in 50m and 100m, winning the final heat against other older swimmers. He also took gold in 50m backstroke, 200m freestyle and 200m IM along with silver in 50m freestyle, 50m butterfly and 100m freestyle.

Ryan has been going from strength to strength recently and not only did he take gold in 50m butterfly, 100m backstroke and 50m freestyle, all in personal best times, but he also broke the one minute barrier for the 100m freestyle, winning gold in 59.82. He also took silver in 50m backstroke and 200m freestyle.

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Anna Duffield (15) gave it everything in the 200m IM, taking gold and a regional qualification time in the process. She also took gold in the 100m butterfly and silver in 50m freestyle and 50m backstroke. Skye Nichols (9) once again showed she is one to watch, coming away with two golds in 200m backstroke and 50m backstroke, a silver in 50m butterfly and bronze in 50m freestyle. Jasmine Coleman took a convincing gold in 100m butterfly in a time that was 20 seconds faster than the county qualifying time, along with a silver in the 50m butterfly.

Anna Pearce had another excellent gala, showing consistency and stamina across with weekend, with three bronze medals. Ben Bedford also swam strongly, taking gold in the gruelling 200m butterfly and bronze in 200m breaststroke.