Success for local swimmers

A small team of six swimmers, from South Aberdeenshire Swimming (SAS), attended the recent Scottish national short course championships, from December 12-14, at the Royal Commonwealth Pool in Edinburgh.

Double commonwealth relay finalist, Rachel Masson from Aboyne, returned as Scottish national champion in both the 50 & 100 metres freestyle events. In addition, she only narrowly missed out to commonwealth teammate Hannah Miley, by the smallest of margins, eight one hundredths of a second, over the 200 metres distance.

Joined by her South Aberdeenshire teammates, Jessica Christie (Westhill), Ailsa Beck, Megan Grant (both Stonehaven) and Meghan Feld (Banchory) the SAS girls placed fourth in both the 4x50 & 4x100 metres freestyle relays, against some significantly older and more experienced teams.

Head coach Gary Paterson commented: “Rachel has had an excellent meet and has followed up her successful summer by making even further improvements for the season. Her influence, on others in the team, is really such a positive one. It shows, when we have youngsters like 14-year-old Megan Grant, stepping up in her first national senior final, and displaying the ability and confidence to swim her best times against such formidable opposition.”

The sole male swimmer in the team that travelled, Kieran Preston, left his best until last. He posted a lifetime-best performance, to place fourth in a highly-contested 200 metres breaststroke race, bringing this first phase of his season to an exciting climax and providing great expectations of what is yet to come from him. The SAS team returned home with every swimmer having made a representation in finals and looking forward to more fast swimming in the New Year.