England Central retain UK School Games title
5 Sep 2010
The final day of competition at the Sainsbury’s UK School Games saw some nail biting finishes at the Sunderland Aquatic Centre as defending champions England Central retained their title in the team competition.
Strong performances from the team, including a decisive Boys’ 400m Medley relay, saw England Central take top honours for the third year in a row with 258 points. Just six points clear of hosts England North.
Team Captain Adam Rowe commented: “We came here wanting to win and we knew it would be tough so it’s great to be champions again. All of us get on really well together and there is a great team spirit amongst us.
“The last race was dramatic and we weren’t sure if we were going to win but it’s been a good weekend for everyone and we’re going home happy!”
But it wasn’t just England Central who experienced success: England South’s Joseph Patching won his second Individual Medley gold for his team as he swam over 200m in a time of 2:10.55.
The 16-year-old swimmer took to the blocks confidently and led the race from the start eventually touching in 2:10.55, nearly two seconds ahead of second place.
Silver went to Thomas Barton (England North) with bronze going to Euan Inglis (Scotland Northwest).
“I’m very happy with my results here,” said Patching. “I gave it my all and to get two gold in two days here is great.
“I’ve come into this meet well rested, I haven’t been training hard since the Youth Champs and this is a nice way to get back into it.
“My season goes on from here so hopefully I’ll be able to build from this.”
Amelia Maughan secured her second individual gold and Games record in the Girls’ 100m Freestyle. The England South swimmer touched in a time of 57.88 ahead of Stephanie Blakeburn (England North) and Hayley Williams (England Central).
“Everyone’s support has really helped me to swim well this weekend,” said Maughan. “I’ve moved to Bath to train and it’s going great. It’s a fantastic club and I really love it.”
Paralympian Lizzie Simpkin impressed as she swam to the title in the Women’s MD 200m Individual Medley. The SM9 swimmer, representing England North touched in a time of 3:02.75 (529 points) to take gold ahead of England East’s Hannah North and Ireland’s Namphon Steele.
Simpkin, who returned from the IPC World Swimming Championships only a few weeks ago, later added to her collection securing gold in the Women’s MD 100m Butterfly in a time of 1:16.03.
“It’s a really great atmosphere here,” said Simpkin. “It’s nice that there are lots of different sports to give it a feel of the Olympics and it makes you want to perform well.”
Jack Bridge secured a new Games best British Disability Points total when he swam in the Men’s MD 200m Individual Medley. The SM10 England North swimmer touched in a time of 2:28.22 to earn 719 points.
Silver went to England Central’s Oliver Hynd with Bronze going to Sam Bradley, representing England East.
Defending 100m Breaststroke champion Bethan Davie retained her title after touching in a time of 1:15.34. The Welsh swimmer swam a confident race finishing ahead of England Central’s Jodie Hawksworth and England East’s Chloe Bean.
“It’s really great to be here as part of the team, everyone is so supportive and it makes you want to do your best,” said Davie.
England Central’s Adam Peaty set a Games record as he swam in the Boys’ 100m Breaststroke in a time of 1:05.67. Nicholas Cook (England North) took silver with Craig Benson (Scotland South East) taking bronze.
Jessica Applegate made it to in a row as she took gold in the Women’s MD 100m Freestyle. The S14 swimmer, representing England East, put in an excellent performance to touch close to the British record in 1:04.46, earning 920 British Disability Points. Silver went to England North’s Chloe Selman with England South’s Hannah Russell taking bronze.
“The support here from everyone has been fantastic,” said Applegate. “I definitely want to come back next year and defend my titles.”
Sam Horrocks secured his second gold of the Games after swimming to the title in the Boys’ 200m Butterfly. Horracks, swimming for England Central, just missed out on the Games best time for the second day running as he touched in 2:07.65, 0.47 seconds off the record.
Silver went to England East’s Oliver Keegan in 2:10.54 with Bogac Ayhan, swimming for England South, claimed bronze in a time of 2:14.41.
Curtis Cutler secured Ireland’s second gold of the Games as he swam to the title in the Boys’ 100m Freestyle. The 15-year-old touched in 53.00 with England Central’s Adam Rowe taking silver and Wales’ Lewis Smith claiming bronze.
The Girls’ 200m Backstroke was won by Rachel Williams, representing England South, whose time of 2:19.21 was enough to secure her gold. Silver went to England East’s Flora Hanson in a time of 2:23.79 with bronze going to Emily Allsop, representing England Central, in 2:24.04.
England North’s Joe Elwood took the Sainsbury’s UK School Game title in the Boys’ 200m Backstroke after dominating the rest of the field to touch in a time of 2:12.71. Silver went to Caleb Hughes of England East with England Central’s Matthew Watkinson taking bronze.
Stephen Milne took gold in the Boys’ 400m Freestyle event securing a time of 4:05.15. The Scotland South East swimmer touched ahead of En gland Central’s David Philips and Ireland’s Connor Turner.
Jacob Parker (S14, England Central) took gold in the Men’s MD 100m Freestyle in a time of 59.27, worth 814 points. Silver went to Ryan Crouch (England East) and Josef Craig (England North) took bronze.
The quartet of Abigail Abrahams, Kristina Neves, Hannah McCarthy and Amelia Maughan secured gold and a new Games record in the Girls’ 800m Freestyle Team event. The team, swimming for England South touched in 8: 30.78 to take gold with the team from England Central claiming silver and England North taking bronze.
England Central secured gold in the Boys’ 800m Freestyle after touching in a time of 7:52.32 to take the title.
England North’s Jordan Barlow swam a fantastic final leg to see the quartet rise through the field to secure the silver medal in a time of 7:56.74, beating Wales into third by just over one tenth of a second.
It was the final relays that proved decisive: The Girls’ 400m Medley Team event saw England South win gold, but all eyes were on the Boys’ race as points leaders England North went head-to-head with defending champions England Central with only two points separating them.
In dramatic fashion England North touched first amidst the cheers of their team but a faulty changeover meant that they were met with a disqualification handing both the race victory and the Games victory to England Central.
Other gold medallists include Elena Sheridan (England East) in the Girls’ 200m Butterfly, Jacob Parker (England Central) in the Men’s MD 100m Butterfly, Chloe Tuton (Wales) in the Girls’ 200m Individual Medley and Megan Davis (England North) in the Girls’ 400m Freestyle.
Sainsbury’s UK School Games Team final standings:
1 England Central 258
2 England North 252
3 England South 240
4 England East 220
5 Wales 199
6 Scotland South East 133
7 Scotland North West 130
8 Ireland 120