By Eliza McGuire, Revelstoke Aquaducks
The Revelstoke Aquaducks traveled to the coast this weekend to compete at the North Delta Sunfish Invitational. While only seven Ducks attended, they attracted a lot of attention with top 8 finishes from all athletes.
Division 1 Girl Suri Stewardson took off time in all of her events. Her 50 metre butterfly personal best shot her to first from fifth in the region. Suri moved up places in all her events at this meet, most notably in the 100 metre freestyle, where she dropped 10 seconds and improved six spots.
In the preliminary heats, Division 3 Girl Hunter Stewardson swam her way into three out of a potential four finals, going nearly 100 pre cent best times. Also competing in the Division 3 Girl category for the Ducks was Devyn Gale, who placed top three in all four events and went multiple best times over the weekend.
Division 2 Girl Kayln Gale competed hard against the best in the province, in what might well be a rehearsal for finals at provincials later this month, as all three of the top swimmers in the province were in attendance. Kayln won the 50 metre freestyle and the 100 metre freestyle in spectacular fashion, and placed third in both her 100 metre individual medley and 50 metre butterfly.
Nolan Gale and Beth Granstrom both broke meet records in the preliminary heats in 100 metre freestyle, though they did not top their times in finals. Beth added another club record record to her name in the 50 metre freestyle, bringing her total to six; she holds the club record for the 50 and 100 metre freestyle, 50 and 100 metre butterfly, 100 metre backstroke, and 200 meter individual medley.
Nolan went under 60 seconds for the first time in the 100 metre freestyle, breaking his own club record for the fourth time this season, bringing down a 14-year-old meet record with it.
Kate Granstrom had perhaps the best race of the meet when she won the 100 metre breaststroke. Going into the final in fourth place, Kate set herself up well in the opening 50 metres, going stroke for stroke with the defending provincial champion in the event, then allowing her fitness to carry her through the second half of the race with very little decomposition in her technique.
Day two ended on a streak for the Revelstoke squad, where they won the last seven events they entered. It was started by Beth Granstrom’s win in the 100 metre backstroke, then carried through into Hunter Stewardson’s 50 metre breaststroke win. Kate Granstrom kept the streak alive with her move from fourth to first, and then the Ducks began their domination of the 100 metre freestyle. Kayln Gale won her race by more than a body length, and Devyn Gale came from behind to win with a gutsy last 15 meters. Nolan Gale was ahead on the start and stayed that way for the whole race, besting the rest of the final by three seconds or more. Beth Granstrom followed suit.
Next weekend is the Okanagan Regional Championships in Kamloops, and if the competition in Delta is any indicator, the Ducks are ready to dominate. With 50 swimmers signed up to attend the meet, the Ducks are no doubt going to be a force as they look to win the meet for the first time in history.