O’Mahoney and Collings clinch Duet title on final day in Gloucester
24 April 2011
Bristol Central picked up their second Gold medal at the British Gas Synchronised Swimming Championships in Gloucester winning the Duet competition.
The duet of Alexandra O’Mahoney and Isobel Collings, who led after the technical programme, overcame their nerves to win the Free Duet programme and the overall Duet competition.
Of the victory O’Mahoney said: “We were very nervous beforehand but we overcame them to swim well.
“There was less than a point separating the top three so we are really pleased. Our free routine and strong technical ability allowed us to pull through.”
Collings said: “Overall we’re really happy. Last year we just missed out so it’s good to be on the other side and be on top. It has been a long weekend but a very good one.”
The pair finished with a total of 127.02.
Trafford’s Tessa Griffiths and Eniko Toth took silver with a score of 126.93, just ahead of Rushmoor who were third.
Jo Bean, Head Coach for Trafford, was also impressed with her team’s performance.
“That was super sharp, fast swimming and I’m so proud of the girls. We had a penalty point yesterday in the technical and that cost us but that’s sport. We’re tough and we’ll bounce back.
“We only finished the routine last week and I think they were brilliant today.”
Robyn Bignall and Lucy Hockin won the bronze for Rushmoor.
In the Open Competition, the British Synchro duet, who are sponsored by Kellogg’s, performed their Commonwealth Silver medal winning routine to win with a final combined score of 181.32. Olivia Allison, who swims with Jenna Randall, said: “We had a good beginning and end but made a couple of mistakes in the middle so we still have tweaks to make but that was a good swim.”
The team title was also up for grabs in the last event of the championships.
The Free Team event was the final event of the weekend with six teams competing for the coveted trophy.
Again the top positions were separated by the smallest margins. This time Rushmoor, who performed last, took the top prize with a final score of 137.12.
Their Head Coach, Louise Woolley said: “We’re all really pleased with that swim. It was so close but it all came together on the day, our highlights were flying!
"We had illnesses in the team yesterday and they pulled together for the technical routine to come through and win the free. They gelled so well and we’re very happy.”
Just 0.61 points behind them were the Bristol Central team, who had a total of 136.51. Karen Thorpe, former international Synchronised swimmer who coaches the senior team at Bristol Central, said: “We did really well in the Free Combination and the Duet so we’re pleased with those gold medals.
“The girls swam a well executed routine in the Free Team with good synchronisation and pattern changes.Technically it is a hard routine.
“Swimming early in the draw is always hard but we’ll be back next year.”
In third place were Reading Royals who finished the championships with 135.60. Their coach, Kate Coupar was very happy with their bronze medal.
“That was a really close team performance. A couple of things weren’t great but we were very happy to medal.
“We had a target to medal in every event and we managed 3 out of 4 so we’re pleased with that.
“The girls were excited to perform the story and we’re glad with how it went.”
The British Team, sponsored by British Gas, performed their ‘War of the Worlds’ routine, which they will be showcasing again in a month’s time at the LEN European Cup in Sheffield. They scored a total of 178.550 to win the Open Competition.
Adele Carlsen, High Performance Manager for the British Team said: “It has been a really successful weekend for the squad.
“The aim for us was to put in good performances one month out of the European Cup. It has given the coaches and athletes a chance to try new choreography and to see where they are at with their programmes.”
Alexandra O’Mahoney of Bristol Central was presented with the Holland Trophy award for the best combined total score for the competition. She accumulated a total of 541.45 during the weekend following performances in the Solo, Duet and Team events.
Swimmer of the Year went to Lauren Smith of the British Team following her Bronze medal at the Commonwealth Games in Delhi.
The Jemma Yates award for endeavour was presented to Anya Tarasuik of the British Team.
Full results from both events can be found here.