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A fantastic fourth top club title in a row for Wycombe District

Wycombe District Swimming Club made it a four-peat of top club awards at the Swim England Open Water National Age Group Championships 2023.

The club picked up three golds throughout the competition with Lucy Fox, George Pearson and Samuel Williams all topping the podium at Rother Valley Country Park.

It means that the Buckinghamshire based outfit continued their domination of the award, which they have held since 2018.

After retaining the award, head coach Kevin Brooks was proud of both his swimmers and coaching staff.

He said: “I’m really happy with how the club’s performed. We have an emerging group of younger swimmers coming through that all featured in the top ten or top five.

“It’s our more senior athletes at 16 and above who won multiple golds today so we need to build on from that success.

“We’ve won the top club award since 2018 and it’s our intention to keep doing that but I’m really happy with how these have gone, particularly after a really successful British Summer Championships.

“It’s a real big team effort led by not just myself but importantly, Joe Evans our head age group coach, Gemma (Hathaway, head of athletic development and physical preparation), and also Ian Keys whose also one of our volunteer open water coaches. Together, we develop the programme consistently each year.

‘Pushing each other forward’

“It’s really important – you’ve got to love what you do!

“We introduce open water from a young age, we take swimmers to our local Henley Swim Festival, Joe takes them with Ian for some familiarisation training and find local lakes and stuff.

“Fundamentally, to be successful in open water you’ve got to be a good pool swimmer and the training comes from being in the pool, so it’s a combination of those things which we do.”

Following a competitive event that saw nine different clubs win gold across the day, Brooks is excited for the future of the open water swimming.

“I’m really happy. The results were a lot closer this year, there was fantastic swims from a lot more clubs this year which is really good for open water swimming in this country, seeing so many more clubs feature on the podium and in the top ten.

“Particularly, a local rival to us in the South East – Portsmouth, they’re doing really well in open water and that’s great to see because we all need competition to keep pushing each other forward.”

You can catch up on all the reports from the Swim England Open Water National Age Group Championships here.