Saturday, June 24, 2006

Day 7







Day 7

Results:


1500m Vincent McArdle 18:08.77= BRONZE

50m Freestyle Eoin Nolan 00:24.79 = SILVER
John Kealy 00:24.61 = GOLD

4 x 100m Medley Relay

John Kealy Backstroke 60:09
David Mc Ilroy Breaststroke 69:23
Eoin Nolan Butterfly 60:9
Vincent McArdle Freestyle 56.28 =TEAM GOLD


For the 1500m event, either Sweden and Lithuania were favourite to win first place. No one was worried about Ireland! Well someone should have told them!! When McArdle was introduced to the crowd, the Irish supporters started doing the YMCA dance but adapted it to VMCA! It’s so true when someone says the Irish eyes are always smiling! Looking over to the other countries such as Ukraine and the Russian crowd who looked so intense and worried, whereas the Irish crowd take every opportunity to get them selves noticed! We emit contagious happiness that those around us cannot help but smile! McArdle was the only swimmer smiling in the line up as he cringed at our pathetic attempt at dancing. The mood in the pool hall was very merry! The 1500m consisted of 30 laps which took on average 18 minutes to finish! Turner was confident that McArdle would come away with a medal. However, when McArdle dived in the water his starting pace was worrying, Turner needed him to swim faster but not too fast as he needed to conserve his energy for the end. Sweden was well ahead but Lithuania was at good distance from McArdle. It seemed possible that McArdle could catch up. Unfortuantely, Lithuania speeded off. McArdle was now swimming at an increasing pace, Turner was pleased with him. It was looking promising, McArdle knew what he was doing, he was swimming faster and faster as the last 10 laps were called out. Turner beamed with pride as McArdle completed the last 2 laps skilfully. It was his best performance by 37 seconds. He finished in third place making it his first medal of the E.C! McArdle was exhausted but it did not stop him from congratulating nearly everyone in the pool! Everyone on the supporters bench were extremely pleased, especially the swimmers! There was a new look in his eye as McArdle left the pool, McArdle now knew what he was capable of. The other countries took notice of our new red-hair swimmer and started worrying, and rightly so!

50 Freestyle

Eoin Nolan and John Kealy swam in lanes beside each other. It has been Eoin’s aim to beat John in this race. Unfortunately for Eoin, the King prevailed! Turner said “ What a race! The king is still alive, but the pauper is coming up! Both of them are two different swimmers! Kealy is a power swimmer whereas Nolan is a build up swimmer.” In the last 25m, Nolan was only half a body length behind! Kealy held on to win while Nolan burst through the field. “Another meter, it would have been a different story!” says Turner This is Kealy’s fifth gold and Nolan’s 1st Silver so far!

4 x 100m Medley Relay is the race where each swimmer swims one of the four different strokes, Kealy swam the backstroke, McIlroy swam the Breaststroke, Nolan swam the butterfly and McArdle swam the freestyle. Relays are the most exciting race in the E.C. This relay was different for Ireland. For the first time ever, McArdle joined the relay team! With his success in the 1500m, he was now a changed swimmer, he beamed with confidence and hunger for more medals! The other three experienced swimmers aimed to give Ireland the lead so that there was less pressure on McArdle in the final stroke. Ukraine was also a favourite to win the gold, fortunately for Ireland, they were swimming in the lane next to them. This meant that the team could keep an eye on their pace. Kealy went in first to swim in his favourite stroke, backstroke. We hoped that he would not have a bad start like the last time. Thankfully, Kealy flew in the air at a powerful speed, it was visible that every muscle in his body was working! Kealy was chased by Ukraine all the way through, McIlroy attempted to brush off Ukraine but could not do so! It was all down to the Nolan Pace to get away from Ukraine so that McArdle was not intimidated by his visible presence. Nolan swam faster than ever, living up to the famous “Nolan Pace.” Now Ukraine was slightly behind us, McArdle flew in like a dolphin and swam with sheer determination. It was an emotional race for the Irish supporters, we beamed with pride as McArdle swam incredibly! The Irish supporters were screaming so loudly, no one could contain their excitement as we saw McArdle in the last 25m with Ukraine at a comfortable distance! McArdle’s time of 0:56.28 was faster than Turners! Turner grabbed anyone who was not celebrating and jumping around “ See, I knew that boy could do it! He’s an extremely talented swimmer!! I’m so proud of him!” Those words sums up McArdle! It was a memorable day for McArdle, this was the start to many many medals!!They also broke the European record!!!


Comment for the day

Mrs Eileen Nolan
Supporter (and Eoin Nolan’s mother!)

Brilliant results! The boys have done Ireland proud. My first memory of Eoin winning medals was when he was six years old in his school gala at St Joseph’s. I did not think then that he would go on to achieve what he has done. I am so proud of him!

Thursday, June 22, 2006

A tribute to Alan Turner






Alan Turner

Alan Turner has officially announced his retirement from swimming on the 21st June, after winning gold in the 4 x 100m freestyle relay. Alan has been swimming for 30 years since the age of 8 years old, he took part in swimming for the deaf at aged 13. He is now a coach/swimmer in this E.C. It is impossible to count the medals he has won over a period of 30 years! He has given the IDSA 25 years of his athletic service. Thats a quarter of a century!

Alan counts his best memory as setting the world record for 100m breaststroke in Los Angeles in 1985, in that same year, he also won the National Championships for the hearing. His most exciting memory was the achieving the gold medal in the 4 x 100m relay in Australia. His worst memory was in the Deaflympics in Rome, when he didn’t win any medals!

Alan has had 12 major operations in his legs and 2 hips replaced. It is incredible how he has managed to make it to this E.C! In every event he swam for Ireland the only thing on his mind has been victory. He has given his country so much, he is certainly a great sportsman with a heart filled with Irish pride. He is a man known to many in the deaf world of swimming, not only for his swimming skills but for his contagious laugh and warm personality. Alan is what every sportsman should be: strong, dedicated, honest, modest but always seeking to better himself, always firm but fair and most importantly, a friend to all. He is a role model to all our deaf swimmers. The Irish Deaf Sports Association is extremely proud to have had him as an Irish athlete for the past 25 years. We are only sad that he is leaving us now as an athlete, we are sad that he has more to give but he physically cannot, but we are happy that he has lots of good memories of swimming, meeting many sports people around the world who share the same love of swimming as him. We at the IDSA cannot express how proud we are of him. We wish him the best of luck in whatever he may do and hope he comes back to us as a director or coach someday! This may be an end of an era for Alan but may it be the beginning of an end!

Alan is our swimming legend! May your next quarter of century be a happy one!

Day 6, Free day, Thessaloniki,Greece




Day 6

Free Day

Today’s main activity consisted of playing by the pool in the hotel. The lads took a well-deserved break! It was a fun-filled day for all as there were many choices of things to do, such as sun-bathe, shop, walk, play ball games in the pool and so on.
Tonight we are going out to a restaurant in town to take a break from the food at the hotel. The boys are under strict orders to return to their rooms by 10.30pm. Any massages from our sports massager will be done before then. We are extremely lucky to have Vicki on board, when our swimmers have any muscular discomfort or pain; Vicki works her magic fingers on them!

We have received many texts and fax messages from well-wishers. On behalf of the team, I want to thank you all. It makes a great difference to the team when they know that the deaf community of Ireland is behind them and giving them their much needed support. It is a morale booster for the team. Keep them coming!

Many of you have asked when the team will be coming home. They will be arriving at Dublin airport at 8.55pm on Sunday 25th June.

Total medals won:

Day 3- 1 Gold (EN) 1 Bronze(JK)
Day 4- 3 Gold (JK, EN-2)
Day 5- 3 Gold (JK-2 + Team) 1 Bronze

Total medal tally so far: 7 Gold, 2 Bronze

Tomorrows events:

John Kealy and Vincent McArdle: 200m Backstroke
John Kealy, Eoin Nolan and Alan Turner: 50m Free Style

Irish swimmers walk on water!!! Day 5 Thessaloniki Greece






Day 5

Results:

100m Backstroke John Kealy 1:00.56 1st= GOLD
Vincent McArdle 1:12.1 8th

50m Butterfly David McIlroy 26.44 3rd= BRONZE
John Kealy 26.33 1st= GOLD

4 x 100m Eoin Nolan 53.76
David McIlroy 56.84
Alan Turner 57.95
John Kealy 54.02 1st= GOLD

Turner has never seen Kealy so tense before a race. The 100m backstroke which no one has beaten him since 1989 is Kealy’s favourite stroke. Understandably the pressure was on him to maintain this unbeatable record. McArdle, whose birthday is today, looked nervous in the line up. A medal would be the perfect present for McArdle who turned 17 today. As the men clung tightly onto the bar at the diving pad to propulse them in the water, hearts beat wildly hoping for the best for our two Irish men. To our horror, Kealy’s starting lights did not work, as the other swimmers flew backwards into the air, Kealy realised the lights were not working and immediately leaped backwards into the water to join the swimmers. Our hearts were on the floor as it was the worst start possible!! Kealy was now the last swimmer in the 1st 25m. McArdle’s pace was looking good. It was obvious that Kealy was anxious to join the 1st 3 men in the lead as he flung his arms backwards as quick and as hard as he could. Soon he was in the first 3, everyone cheered with delight, he was a “bolt from the blue!” Turner said “ He swam faster than he did in Melbourne. I have never seen Kealy so tense before.” In the final 25m, Kealy was in the lead all the way,with a wonderful comeback it was only right that he came first! “He had a terrible start, he was left behind. He’s still a king! No one has beaten him in this stroke since 1989!” says Turner
McArdle finished last however Turner praised him for making it to the final. “ It was a good experience for him. The main event for McArdle is the 1500 which he is in the final for on Friday. I’m confident he will get a medal.”

McIlroy and Kealy swam together in the butterfly. A healthy rivalry between the two lads was born in Melbourne, McIlroy holds the WR for this stroke, he beat Kealy to first place in Melbourne. Now they were against each other once again. McIlroy, a man of many hidden talents, has a cool laid-back attitude about him. He was not fazed by the pressure on him to beat Kealy again. As the green lights went on, the men leapt into the air and dived with such a skill. No matter how many times I see swimmers dive, it fascinates me. It’s a beautiful and graceful movement. McIlroy was in the lead for the first 30m, until Kealy overtook! Ukraine was also trying to overtake Kealy and McIlroy. It was impossible to tell who came first as it looked as if all three touched the finishing line at the same time. All eyes swifted to the scoreboard, the Irish supporters roared with delight, Kealy came first!! McIlroy came third!! A good day for the Irish! Turner said “ Kealy is an unbelievable swimmer, he’s the 2nd oldest man in the event! You’ll never see someone like him again. McIlroy could be a superstar swimmer if he trains a lot more! He could possibly be better than Kealy!! I’m very proud of the lads!”

4 x 100m relay, the most anticipated race of the E.C, it is where four members of the team swim two laps each, as soon as a swimmer touches the finishing line, the second swimmer dives in and swims and so on. The starting line was looking a crowded with 32 men ( 8 teams). It didn’t take a genius with good taste to figure out that not only did the Irish have the best team, but we had the best looking team!!! Nolan was up first, he has been really successful in the event and it was important that the Irish team got a good start! Nolan was the man to do that! With his “Nolan Pace”, the team rested easy knowing that he would bring the team in the lead. Nolan admitted he felt the pressure he was under. Nolan dived in, McIlroy was watching his pace as he was due to take up Nolan’s lead next. The Irish were in the lead all the way through until Turner dived in, the Russians had caught up with McIlroy, so the pressure was on Turner to break away and keep the Irish in the lead. As the saying goes, the Russian was like a bad smell that just wouldn’t go away!! In the return lap, Turner was swimming as fast as he could, but it was not enough, the Russian got the lead before Kealy could dive in, the Russian was already making his way for the 1st 50m. Kealy was the man to do it, the magical comeback man could do it! Kealy dived in and swam like he never swam before. Before we knew it, Kealy overtook the Russian! The battle was not over yet, Ukraine sneaked up without Kealy and the supporters realising, now the two were incredibly close. In the last 25m, it looked as if Ukraine was going to win the gold, but Kealy somehow made first to the finishing line. Cheers and cries of delight filled the pool hall, Kealy looked up at the supporters not realising how close he was to coming second!! I felt as if I had been swimming the event myself, I was exhausted from all the shouting and cheering!!The Ireland team has won gold in the relay in 1994 and 2002. It was a huge moment for the team, especially Turner who announced his resignation from swimming. “ The race reminded me of Melbourne, it was almost the same race! I was hoping for WR but it was not to be on the day. I’m glad we beat Ukraine. I expected to win but not that close! Thanks to all the supporters for making it an exciting race!”

Comment for the day:

Vicki Power
Ireland Team Sports Massager

“ I had a great time working with deaf people, it’s a totally new experience for me. The team are amazing, hopefully I helped them with my magic fingers. I am very proud to be part of a winning team. The director Ken and secretary S-J had everything organised extremely well. So far, it has been a brilliant week!”

Tuesday, June 20, 2006

Day 4. Three Golds won today!!





Day 4

Result:

100m Freestyle Eoin Nolan 53.88 GOLD!
50m Backstroke John Kealy 28.43 GOLD!
400m Freestyle Vincent McArdle 4:36 6th place
Eoin Nolan 4:16.06 GOLD

First up, we had Nolan competing in the 100m Freestyle. Once again, Natalchuk (Ukraine) was in the lane next to him. In the 1st 50m Nolan was in the lead, his pace was fast and steady. The supporters had every faith that he would win a place in the top three. Nolan’s parents flew to Greece to watch their son swim; they certainly have every reason to be proud! Pride filled their faces as Nolan continued to be in the lead in the final lap. Nolan said “ I could see I was in the lead in the 1st 50m, I was delighted to see that I was still in the lead in the 2nd lap. However, as soon as I passed the 25m line, I saw Ukraine creeping up on me. So I ducked my head down and swam as fast as my arms and legs could carry me.” Thanks to his arms and legs, he came first!

John Kealy prepared for the 50m Backstroke, his favourite stroke. The current world record (WR) of 23.9 was won by Kealy. He aimed to beat his own WR, winning a gold would be a bonus he said. Like in any situation be it swimming or cooking, one hopes for a good start. Unfortunately, Kealy did not have a good start, the electric board that is used to push the swimmers into the water was very slippery. Kealy’s propulsion was affected therefore his pace was too. He saw his opponents in each side of the lane in the lead, he pulled himself together as fast as he could and just swam with all his might. The pool hall was filled with the sound of the supporters roaring, (mainly from the Irish fans) Kealy’s comeback was magical! He came first, bringing him his first gold in the E.C. “ I’m disappointed I didn’t break the WR. I pulled out of the 100m freestyle to concentrate on breaking the WR as I would not have enough recovery time if I competed in both events.”

Two Irish swimmers competed in the 400m Freestyle, McArdle and Nolan. It was McArdle’s first final in the E.C. He admitted he felt nervous but he was also tired from competing in the Heats earlier in the morning. Turner coached him and mentally prepared him! After all, mental preparation is half the battle. McArdle, a fresh face to the E.C had no idea what lay ahead. Nolan wished his fellow teammate the best of luck as they walked out to the starting line. Now they were both swimming against each other, both battling for a place in the top three. The supporters remained equal to both of them! Nolan, having not trained for the 400m, entered the race at the encouragement of his coach Turner. Perhaps a surprise lay in store! Nolan and McArdle dived into the pool, McArdle was within the first 5 leading the race! Turner was quiet during the first 2 laps, which was a change for a first as he usually shouts the place down! The final two laps saw McArdle slowing down and the first 4 men in the lead. Nolan was one of the first four; Turner started getting excited and returned to his old self. It was as if Nolan had heard Turner roaring somehow, he started to get in the lead. All the supporters were on their feet, egging Nolan to swim faster as Sweden was approaching at a menacing pace, Nolan said “ Sweden was obviously getting tired, I used that to my advantage as throughout the race, I followed his pace as I know how much he wanted to win it. Once we passed the 25m mark, I ignored his pace and started swimming at mine.” “The Nolan Pace” brought him his second gold for the day!! He was given a gold medal for the second time as well as his flower. Having given the first flower to his number one fan, his mother, his second flower went to Sarah Jane. “I gave the flower to S-J as she has been a great supporter and every time I touch the finishing line, I always see her screaming and jumping around with delight, I don’t need to look at the score board to see if I’ve won! S-J just shows me!”

Comment for the day:

Donal Desmond
Supporter

“I cannot believe Nolan has won three gold!! It is brilliant! I recall seeing Nolan being very worried about the 400m before the event. I was just as surprised as he was when he won! I’m very proud of McArdle, he did very well today and is a very promising swimmer!”

Day 3, Thessaloniki, Greece









Day 3

Today the European Championship (E.C) of the Deaf, Men & Women was officially declared open by Teddy Webb, General Secretary of the European Deaf Sports Organisation (EDSO).
All morning, we had the heats; it is in this round that the swimmers compete for a place in the final. Vincent McArdle missed out on the 200m Freestyle final by a few milliseconds! The rest of the swimmers qualified for the final and spent the rest of the afternoon mentally preparing themselves.

In the evening we had the opening ceremony. It was beautiful and welcoming. All the swimmers participating in the E.C were invited to walk the full length of the pool. Vincent McArdle was the flag bearer, he proudly led the team around the pool. It was only appropriate for a McArdle to carry the Irish flag, being the youngest member of the team (he is only 16 years old), his striking red hair, freckles and pale skin is so Irish that he doesn’t need to be carrying the Ireland flag to show that the team is Irish!
We were entertained by Greek dancers who were deaf. It was interesting to watch as drums beats echoed around the pool hall.

The long awaited event finally came: THE FINAL! Eoin Nolan was first up in the 200m Freestyle final. It was so nerve wrecking. Our Irish pride beamed the minute he put on his swimming cap, which bears the shamrock logo and the word Ireland. He admitted that his fierce rival was Natalchuk, from Ukraine who happened to swim in the next lane beside him. This heightened his nerves! The first 50m was unbearable to watch for the Irish supporters as it was so important that he gained the right speed and pace, if he swam too fast then that would mean his return lap could see him swimming slow. It was looking good in the first 50m as he managed to swim under 56 seconds. The second he tumbled speedily to start his second lap, we were on our feet roaring, edging him to win! To our delight, Nolan was leading! However, his rival was swimming at a threatening pace! He seemed to be catching up on Nolan. In the last 25m, Nolan said “ I looked up at the last 25m and I could see Ukraine beside me, so I gulped the last breath of air and just swam my heart out, I didn’t come up for air.” The minute he touched the finishing line, the Irish supporters were screaming with delight, not only had he come first but he broke the European Record!! “It is my first ever gold as well as my first time breaking a European record. I hope to win more medals during the week!” It was a good start for Ireland indeed! The European Record has not been broken for nearly 8 years!

Next up was Alan Turner (Coach) and David McIlroy in the 50m Breaststroke final. The supporters were on high from Nolan’s victory. The moment the two lads dived in the water, we willed for them achieve a good place! McIlroy was leading for the last 50m, it looked promising!! Turner was lagging behind, he complained of a sore hip before the race, it was obviously affecting his performance. McIlroy seemed to be our only hope of Ireland winning a medal in this race. It seemed likely until the 25m line was passed, other swimmers started gaining on him. McIlroy missed out on third place by only 3 milliseconds! He was rather cool about coming fourth. Turner came last unfortunately. The supporters were disheartened on behalf of him.

Our final Irish performance of the evening was the 100m butterfly, Kealy was up for this event. All eyes were on Kealy as he is a prestigious athlete in the swimming world. The atmosphere in the pool hall was quiet with a sharp air of anticipation. When the countdown started, the moment the lights turned green, 8 strong men dived in to the pool with one thing on their mind. Victory. Kealy seemed to be heading in the right direction, he swam fast in the first 50m making his first lap completed in 27 seconds, however, some were saying he swam too fast which meant his return lap would be affected. In the return lap, Kealy was leading, slowly two swimmers on each side to Kealy seemed to be gaining speed. We hoped that somehow Kealy would manage to overtake and touch the finishing line first. The German and Lithuanian managed to beat him first, leaving Kealy finishing in third place. We were delighted that Kealy finished in the top three! “I expected to finish in the top three, third is a good place but I would have liked to come first. The swimmers are now younger and fitter. I’m just glad I beat Grigoryev, from Russia who has been my lifelong rival since I was 17 years old.” In true sportsmanship style, he congratulated his team member, “I’m still happy as Eoin did fantastic today and I’m very proud of him.” Coming third place doubts in his mind “It hit me that I should have retired a long time ago but I love my swimming!.” Coming third came as a surprise to Kealy who hasn’t come third in any swimming event since the age of 17. There was sense of disappointment as he talked to Turner. However, this disappointment has not dampened his spirit. “I’m looking forward to my favourite stroke tomorrow, the 50m backstroke, no one has beaten me for 20 years. I don’t want those younger swimmers beating me again!”

Comment for the day:

Sarah Jane Moloney
IDSA Secretary

“It’s wonderful to be here supporting the Irish. We’re the loudest and noticeable fans in the pool hall. When the Irish athletes are in the pool, I get really nervous and I feel like I want to help them win by pushing them as they swim! Obviously I can’t do that! I’m so proud of each and every one of them! They are well-behaved and extremely liked by all athletes all over Europe. It seems a lot of people hold the Irish athletes in high esteem. They work extremely hard and get little recognition of the work they do in Ireland! Coming here has made me see the swimmers in a new light!”

Sunday, June 18, 2006

Day 2, Thessaloniki






Day 2
The temperature rose to 31 degrees Celsius today! The Ireland swimming team got their first dip in the Posidonio swimming pool. Much to their disappointment, the outdoor pool was not available for today. They had to train in the indoor 50m swimming pool. Vincent McArdle complained the water was too cold! It did not stop him from being the first team member to go in the pool dive in the pool to start his training. Coach, Alan Turner, offered encouragement and support to the team throughout the training session.

Tomorrow the European Deaf Swimming Championships start! The events our Irish swimmers will be taking part in are

1) 200m Free Style – Eoin Nolan (BT= 1.59) and Vincent McArdle (2.10)
2) 50m Breaststroke- Alan Turner (BT=31.25) and David McIlroy (BT=30.8)
3) 100m Butterfly- John Kealy (BT- 58.0) and Eoin Nolan (BT= 1.02)

(BT= Best time)

Nolan and McArdle are up first in the morning for the 200m freestyle. McArdle, aged 16 the youngest swimmer on the team, said “It’s my 1st event at the European Deaf Swimming C’ships, I feel really excited! I will try my best to make it in the final for the free.” Nolan expects to perform his best despite feeling slightly nervous. Having trained in Fort Lauderdale Aquatics Swimming Club for 3 months in Miami alongside with Kealy, he hopes to achieve a time lower than his best (1:59).

Coach Turner and McIlroy will compete in lanes next to each other for the breast stroke, heightening the tension and excitement! McIlroy seems rather cool about the event, saying “ Ah, I feel alright.” Turner has confidently stated “ I think I will make it to the final, I’m the oldest man in the race!”

Kealy, an outstanding swimmer has returned from a seven-month stay in Miami. He has been training with Fort-Lauderdale Aquatics Club as well as training to be an Olympic standard coach. With his dark tan, one would think he was from Portugal! McArdle, a striking Irish man pales in comparison beside Kealy, literally! He has promised to do his best for Ireland, in particular for his hometown, Arklow. He will be competing in this race with Nolan, who is looking forward to it!

Turner’s statement for the day:

“I hope we will beat the record of 8 gold medals! We’ll just take it day by day. We have a really experienced team”


Ken Taylor’s statement:
IDSA Swimming Director

“It’s my first time at an event like this as the swimming director, so far it has been a good experience. My relationship with everyone is great! The boys look very relaxed! I’m really looking forward to tomorrow and I hope the lads will win some medals!”

Supporter Rachel Saunders says:

“ The atmosphere here is great! Everyone is in great form and anticipating the events tomorrow. It’s like a deaf village here!”

Till tomorrow,

Sarah Jane!

(You can fax your good lucks and encouragement to +30 2310 510 555, the team would love to hear from you!Please put For The Attention of Room number 216))

Saturday, June 17, 2006

Day 1 Thessaloniki, Greece


Day 1

After a tiring flight, stopping over at Budapest, we were glad to touch down at Thessaloniki! We were welcomed by a lovely warm breeze and thanked our lucky stars we were all wearing light clothes!

Upon arrival, the hotel was swarming with athletes donning their country colours. Most of our athletes greeted old friends while Vincent McArdle, our youngest swimmer at the age of 17, stood in excitement for what lay ahead! The grand entrance of the hotel made us feel like we were royalty! The athletes couldn’t wait to drop their bags in their room and dip their toes into the Posidonio swimming centre which boasts an outdoor swimming pool! The hot weather made it ideal to swim in the cool soothing water! Unfortunately, we missed the coach that brought everyone to the pool. Our swimmers had to put their togs away much to their resentment! They cannot wait to train at 9.30 tomorrow morning! Don’t we wish we had this kind of weather in Ireland! Imagine how ultra-fit our swimmers would be then!

After having a group meeting to discuss what lay ahead in the day, our athletes were free to roam the city centre and meet with old and new friends! Conversations were filled with comparisons of best times in certain laps; those who were not swimmers were simply lost with the lingo! Hopefully by the end of the week, our “swimming” vocabulary will improve!

Plan for tomorrow: Training at 10.30 – 11.30 + 5.00-6.30

Till then,

Sarah-Jane.