Record-breaking Team Luton swimmers produce a terrific display in Sheffield

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Monday, 22nd November 2021, 11:25 am
Updated Monday, 22nd November 2021, 11:46 am
Medal winners: Graham Powell, Jo Mitchinson and Dave Wright

Team Luton Swimming Club gave one of their best ever performances at the Swim England National Masters Championships in Sheffield recently, bringing home 15 medals, with two gold, six silver and seven bronze, while setting 26 new records as well.

Breaking the Regional and County record in her 40-44 years’ age group at the 800m stage, Jo Mitchinson went on to claim bronze for the 1,500m freestyle in a time of 19:16.04mins, beating the East Region record by 57 seconds while her 800m split was 27 seconds under the old mark.

She then went on to win her 200m backstroke by over 10 seconds.

Team Luton's 240+ men’s relay members: Malcolm Barton, Graham Powell, Dave Wright, Alastair Gibb and Colin Mayes

In the 45-49 years’ age group, Kelly Cooke smashed her previous best 100m freestyle time by over three seconds to set a new Club Masters record of 1:07.42, finishing in eighth.

A similar placing and club record was achieved with her fastest ever 50m freestyle when she clocked 30.81secs, also claiming sixth in her 50m backstroke.

In the men’s 25-29 years’ age group, Sam Bradley competed in five events, with his best placing sixth in the 200m backstroke.

Dave Wright was the club’s other National champion, demolishing the East Region’s 60-64 years’ 200m butterfly record by over 41 seconds in 2:46.83.

In a weekend swimming a total of 1,700m over 10 events, Wright collected seven medals, including silver in his 200m backstroke and bronze in both his 200m individual medley (IM) and 200m freestyle.

His marginally quicker lead split of 2:26.25 in the 4x200m freestyle relay took two seconds off the County Masters record for that event.

In the same age group, Alastair Gibb was rewarded with a bronze in the 400m IM, also securing top 10 finishes in his 100m and 200m medleys, plus the 100m breaststroke.

Graham Powell won three silver and one bronze from the 65-69 years’ age group, setting two East Region and four Beds County records.

He also sacrificed personal glory by competing in the 4x100m medley relay minutes before his favoured 50m butterfly where he missed the silver by just 0.02 seconds and the East Region record by 0.14 seconds.

Malcolm Barton set new County records over both the 100m and 200m breaststroke by two and 12 seconds respectively, placing fifth in each.

He also took 30 seconds off the County 65-69 years’ record in the 400m IM to claim bronze less than 20 minutes after his 200m breaststroke.

In the same age group, Colin Mayes broke his own Beds County 50m breaststroke record by almost two seconds in a time of 40.49secs.

His best placings came with sixth in both the 100m freestyle, in a club Masters’ record time, and 200m breaststroke.

Various relay combinations of Wright, Gibb, Barton, Powell and Mayes saw Team Luton win two silver and one bronze medals in the 240+ years’ age group.

Their time of 10:47.49 lowered the club’s own County record by 20 seconds in the 4x00m freestyle event.

Finishing out of the medals, they still established new Masters County records in the 4x50m medley and 4x50m freestyle races.