A SPECTACULAR haul of 20 trophies and 70 age group medals represented another hugely successful Worcester County Championships for Redditch Swimming Club, who finished second in the medals table.
More than 40 Redditch swimmers competed in the 2017 championships at Wolverhampton over three weekends in January and early February, doing battle with the top swimmers from rival clubs across Worcestershire and Herefordshire.
Leading the way for Redditch was 14-year-old Amelia Rodd who, after her successes at the end of 2016 which included a gold medal and the Junior Championship trophy in the 50m freestyle at the Midland Winter Championships, was expected to do well.
However, she exceeded all expectations with a clean sweep of Junior (15 years and under) and Open championship trophies in the ladies’ freestyle events.
Rodd won six Junior titles (50m, 100m, 200m, 400m and 800m freestyle and 50m butterfly) and a hugely impressive five Open trophies (50m, 100m, 200m, 400m and 800m freestyle).
Another Redditch swimmer who enjoyed great success in 2016 was 14-year-old Lizzie Kingham, who won a bronze medal in the 200m individual medley at the National Championships in Sheffield.
Following on from this in some style, she won eight trophies at the County Championships in Wolverhampton. Kingham won five Junior titles (50m, 100m and 200m breaststroke and 200m and 400m individual medley) and three Open titles (200m breaststroke and 200m and 400m individual medley.
Redditch’s other trophy winner was 32-year-old Paul Wilkes who once again was a very convincing winner of the Open 200m butterfly – an event in which he has remained unbeaten at the Counties for several years.
This good early season form for Wilkes bodes well for another successful year for this Masters swimmer who won British and European Championship titles in 2016.
A total of 35 gold medals were shared between eight Redditch swimmers – Millie Checkley (four golds), Evie Floate (four), Aimee Hood (five), Lizzie Kingham (five), Aurelio Lencioni (five), Amelia Rodd (six), Josie Ross (five) and Paul Wilkes (one).
The other Redditch medallists were Brendan Colley, Emily Farr, Megan Grainger, Rosie Grainger, Jake Hemming, Talia Mitchell and Hannah Willis.
The highest number of age group medals was won by 11-year-old Evie Floate, who came home with no fewer than 11 medals (four gold, four silver and three bronze).
She was closely followed by Lizzie Kingham (ten medals), Aimee Hood (nine), Josie Ross (eight), Amelia Rodd (seven) and, competing at his first ever County Championships, 12-year-old Aurelio Lencioni (seven).
Other Redditch SC qualifiers who competed at the 2017 County Championships were Maddie Allard, Matthew Bell, Jamie Chance, Nathan Clee, Aidan Dawe, Anna Farr, Jenna Fellows, Georgia Fisher, Paulina Geus, Lauren Hartland, George Hastings, Lucy Hatfield, Natalie Hatfield, Dan Holmes, Abby Kelman, Jamie Kelman, Georgia Kingham, Jess Mowat, Louise Osborne, Kiera Phillips, Lucy Potter, Hollie Richmond, Robert Riley, Katie Rolph, Charlotte Sullivan, Amelia Wise and Ben Wright.
Head coach Chris Britt was delighted with the performance of the RSC swimmers and said: “The County Championships are the first main target in our annual competition plan and it was very pleasing to see our swimmers rise to the occasion, achieving so many personal bests and Regional Championship qualifying times as well as winning a massive number of trophies and medals.
“We now need to keep up the hard work and take performances to an even higher level in the big competitions ahead of us.”