On Tuesday 1st of March the Kilmore Swimming Club sent a team of eight swimmers off to Darwin to compete in the 2016 Northern Territory Open and Age Championships. The team was made up of swimmers Emilie and James Cardamone, Karla Page, Alexandra Roberts, Madeleine Rhodes, Tamara Bess, Patrick Kelly and Nathan James with support from Coaches Jennifer Lonie and Lynton Pyle and team manager Noelene Pyle. Kilmore also had one of their officials Derek Bess in attendance who had made the trip to not only support his daughter but to help out our northern counterparts.
After flying in late on Tuesday night, Wednesday was spent acclimatising and relaxing followed by an easy training session for the swimmers to familiarise themselves with the competition pool. From Thursday to Sunday night the swimmers competed in six sessions against the best from the Northern Territory. In between torrential rain and delays due to lightning the area the Kilmore team produced some fantastic results. All of the swimmers qualified for finals in their 50m events, most of the swimmers meddled in their 100m age group events and all of the swimmers came home with new personal bests. Alex, Madeleine, Tamara and Patrick also qualify for the Open finals which were taken from the top eight over all. Kilmore also had two female relay teams compete in the 13 and Over 200m medley and freestyle; on Saturday night there was a very exciting battle for third place in the medley relay, however Tamara, Madeleine, Alex and Karla held off Alice Springs to claim their place on the podium. Then on Sunday morning the Kilmore girls swam an equally exciting free relay; Madeleine, Karla, Emilie and Alex gave it their all to touch out Casuarina by .03 to again cement their third place on the podium.
It was not all swimming for the team, on Thursday morning the team headed off for a relaxing swim in the beautiful Darwin waterfront wave pool, on Friday morning they took a trip out to Howard Springs Nature Park where they cooled off in the waterfall and rock pools beside the natural spring and tropical rain forest. On Saturday they dropped by one on Darwin’s many markets, then back to the apartment for lunch and cake to celebrate Karla’s birthday. Lastly on Monday it was off to the Adelaide River to see some jumping crocodiles.
“This is the third team we have brought to Darwin for this competition” Head Coach Jennifer Lonie said “It is a great experience for the swimmers which they all thoroughly enjoyed. We are really happy with the results the swimmers have produced; they have all worked really hard in the lead up to the meet which shows in their results. They have all arrived home better swimmers and we (the coaches) are really proud of their achievements”.