Last weekend the Campbell River Killer Whales compete in Victoria at the Vancouver Island Regional (VIR) Championships, racing against the top swimmers from across the Island.
CRKW sent down one of their youngest teams ever, made up of some of the up-and-coming stars on the team, as well as swimmers that were attending the VIR Championships for the first time.
“It was a great meet for the whole team, with some of the younger swimmers stepping up into more of a leadership role,” coach Darryl Rudolf said. “The coaches were very impressed with the results from the meet, and can’t wait to see some more fast swimming as we head into some of our most competitive meets of the year.”
Catalina Manders, Cailyn Collis, Cianna Dunn and Melayna Beaudin all had great results over the three-day meet, and were also great leaders to all the younger swimmers that were at the meet.
Melayna Beaudin, a backstroke specialist, swam to a silver medal in both the 100 backstroke and 200 backstroke, posting times that put her in the top 10 in the country for 13-year-old girls.
Cianna Dunn had a breakthrough meet, and put together races that got her noticed by everyone on the Island.
Dunn stood at the top of the podium in the 800 Freestyle and 200 Butterfly, as well as earned silver medals in both the 400 IM and 400 Freestyle.
Cailyn Collis also had a breakout performance, putting together an incredible 1500 Freestyle on the first day. Collis ended up winning the 1500 Freestyle, putting up a time that qualifies her for the Western National Championships coming up in late February.
Catalina Manders was one of the top CRKW swimmers of the meet, posting 100 per cent best times over the course of the weekend, something that she has not done for over two-and-a-half years.
After struggling with performing at meets for a number of years her perseverance helped her put together one of her best meets ever, and she is now qualified for the Swim BC Open Provincial Championships in March.
The big swim of the weekend was done by a very special group of 11-12 girls. Jasmine Skuse, Lilan Forsyth, Emmy Stapff and Jamiliya Wellard, came together as a team to break two Swim BC Provincial Records in the 200 Medley and 200 Freestyle Relay.
On Friday evening the team smashed the old record by two seconds, but were beat to the wall by 0.06 seconds by one of the Victoria teams. When it came to the final relay of the weekend, the 200 Freestyle Relay, the girls were going to do whatever they could to make sure they got to the wall first.
With some of the top 12 and under girls in the country being on the Island, the CRKW team knew that whoever won the race would capture the provincial record as well.
With some amazing swims by all four girls, the team once again destroyed the old record by two seconds, and won the race.
This is the first provincial record held by the Campbell River Killer Whales in seven years, and the first held by a female swimmer.
“There were some amazing swims over the course of the weekend, with swimmers winning medals, qualifying for meets, and hitting best times,” Rudolf said
Kara Beauregard broke club records in the 200 and 800 Freestyle and also achieved her second AAA standard in the 100 backstroke, qualifying herself for the AAA Provincial Championships.
Brooke Wenger had a breakthrough swim in the 200 butterfly on the last night of the meet to go a best time by three seconds, passing a swimmer during the last 20 meters of the race to win a Bronze medal.
Wenger was no stranger to the podium, having many medaling swims during the swim meet, making herself a swimmer to watch as we head into the second half of the season.
Other swimmers that put up exceptional performances were Carson Dunn, Summer Wenger, Sofia Simard, and Owen Willard.