Swimmers recognized for skill, sportsmanship, work ethic

Kin Pool saw plenty of action this past summer, thanks to another busy and successful season of the Nanaimo White Rapids Summer Swim Club.

With cold weather upon us and winter nearly here, things are pretty quiet these days down at the outdoor Kin Pool in Bowen Park.

But the pool saw plenty of action this past summer, thanks to another busy and successful season of the Nanaimo White Rapids Summer Swim Club. It was a very special year for the club, as the White Rapids celebrated the 50th anniversary of the organization. Among the celebrations was a reunion banquet which featured Don Shore, one of the founders of the club, as guest speaker.

It was also a special year in the pool for White Rapids swimmers. The club hosted the B.C. Summer Swimming Association’s Vancouver Island regional championships in August. Numerous individual swimmers captured gold medals and the Nanaimo club won its 11th straight Island crown. Head coach Byron Trajan then led a team of more than 70 swimmers to the B.C. Championships in Coquitlam.

The accomplishments of the club’s swimmers were celebrated recently when the White Rapids held their year-end awards night. My thanks go to club secretary Diane McGonigle for sending along news from the event.

Among the awards handed out were those for most improved swimmers over the course of the season. Recipients were Kennadie Sheppard from the Cat. O division and Faith Telfer and Oliver MacKinnon from the six-and-under age group. Other winners were Elsa Romanik and Drew Duffell from Div. 1, Grace Lim and David Liu from Div. 2 and Kali McWhinnie and Jackson Hessler from Div. 3. Chosen from Div. 4 were Maddy Stewart, Arada Barclay and Nicholas McLennen. Most improved from Div. 5 were Ashley King and Connor McIntyre and from Div. 6-8 were Clare Shuley and Jackson Say.

Reese Deschambault was recognized as the top novice female swimmer from the past summer, with Nathan Nakagawa named as the top novice male swimmer.

Sportsmanship awards were presented to Laura Mace and Ella Hudon from the junior girls, Nick Morrison from junior boys, Sophie Peer from senior girls and Rob Richards from the senior boys.

Outstanding swimmers from the various girls’ divisions were Hannah Duffell, Danielle Barberie, Yulia Bobkova, Abby Pallard, Delaney O’Toole and Jessica King. For the boys, outstanding swimmers were Oliver McLaren, Gus Johnson, Stewart Stephen, Finn Bodnar and Quinn Todd.

Named as most outstanding swimmer overall from the junior age divisions were Cadence Jones, Peter Morch and Carter James.

Most outstanding from the senior division were Cam Laturnus and Sarah Kirkhope.

Work ethic awards were given to Finn Bodnar, Claire Stewart, Linda Scott-Jolly, Nick Bennett, Adam King, Sophie Peer, Jasmine Schellinck, Aiden Telfer, Seth Jones, Kipling Szasz, Lukas Elzinga, Gabe Parsons, Malcolm Davey, Kaleb Collishaw, Ben Buchanan, Will Rhode and Daniel Nakagawa. An outstanding attendance award was won by Jack Laroche, who had the highest overall attendance on the season at 98 per cent.

The final award of the evening, the Marge Dudley Award, named in honour of the club’s first president, was presented to Angus McGibbon for his overall dedication to the sport of swimming.

Whatever your sport, a reminder in closing to play your hardest, play fair and show good sportsmanship.

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