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England synchro swimmers make Blue Peter debut

Today the England Programmes Age Group Synchro Squad will appear on an episode of CBBC’s Blue Peter. The team will showcase their sport to presenters Barney Harwood and Radzi Chinyanganya.

It has been an exciting past few weeks for English synchronised swimming. The British junior team competed at the inaugural European Games in Baku, Azerbaijan, swiftly followed by the Age Group squad heading out to Croatia last Friday to compete in the Primorje Cup.

After a great competition in Croatia, the team finished second overall. And the feature on Blue Peter is another brilliant opportunity to showcase this increasingly popular sport.

Barney and Radzi try their hand at synchro

Tonight’s episode features presenters Barney and Radzi getting into the water to try their hand at synchro. They then go head-to-head to see who can perform the slickest routine as part of the squad.

“Synchronised swimming is a perfect mixture of dancing and swimming,” said Radzi. “For someone like me, with asthma, it was an incredible challenge.

“Imagine not wearing goggles, being upside down underwater, and having to do the same moves as the rest of the team, all at the same time to music! No, neither can I! Synchronised swimmers get my respect, for sure.”

The guys were really up for the challenge

Barney and Radzi were not the only ones who had a good time. Isabelle Thorpe (Bristol Central), who returned from this weekend’s Primorje Cup with a first place in the Duet alongside partner Kate Shortman, said: “It was so much fun working with Radzi and Barney. The guys were really up for the challenge and respectful of everything we were doing.”

Reading Royals’ Victoria Usher said: “It was really fun and I enjoyed working with the presenters. I think they found it hard but they did really well.”

I think they found it hard but they did really well!

Talent Development Officer Karen Thorpe said: “I was surprised how seriously the boys took up the challenge – not just to be the best but to really learn some synchro skills. Barney and Radzi were so supportive and full of admiration for the athletes and the skills and fitness levels required to do this sport.

“They did well to pick up the very short routine and stay orientated when swimming the final routine with the 10 athletes. They were great fun and very enthusiastic”