The final block of this year’s county championships took place at Basildon Sporting Village, kicking off with the tough 400m Individual Medley. 12 year old Louis Lane and 14 year old Lewis Binning set their bars high from the start each claiming a gold medal and the event best time. Daniel Gencas produced a PB to collect bronze and in the 16 year age group Joe Groves collected the gold medal for his efforts.
Four Town girls then made podium finishes in the 400m Freestyle. 14 year old Amelia Moule took silver, 15 year old Emily Milton bronze, 16 year old Jess Ayling and 17 year old Georgia Milton both claimed top spot with gold.
100m Backstroke produced a bronze medal for 16 year old James Rowell whilst Aaron Wilson just missed out on a medal, finishing in fourth place. The girls’ 100m Freestyle gave Moule and Ayling a silver each with Emily Milton claiming bronze, before the final session gave Lane a gold and Binning a silver medal and PB in the 100m Breaststroke.
Georgia Milton continued her gold rush by starting session 10 with a gold medal in the 200m IM. Groves just missed out on a medal in the 200m Breaststroke, before team mate Binning smashed the 200m Freestyle to claim yet another gold medal.
Moule took another gold, this time in the 200m Backstroke, before 17 year old team mates Georgia Milton and Rebecca Cribb produced a Town 1,2 finish collecting gold and silver respectively in the 200m Butterfly. 14 year old Isabelle Jopson swam hard to claim bronze in the 100m Butterfly; a medal for her in each of the Butterfly events.
Session 10 ended on a high when the BAGCAT relay team comprising Daniel Gencas, Nathan Banga, Joshua Eguakhide and Lewis Binning smashed the 4x50m Freestyle Relay in 1.50.49 to take the gold medal.
The final session of this year’s championships continued to yield medals for Town; Georgia Milton claimed bronze in a gutsy 200m Backstroke swim. Both Lane and Binning showed their dominance in the 200m IM claiming golds, with Gencas just missing out on the silver medal to take bronze.
Ayling collected herself another medal, this time a silver in the 100m Breaststroke, before Wilson claimed bronze in the 200m Freestyle.
The girls 200m Breaststroke gave Moule the silver with Holly Hagan just missing out in her age group, finishing in 4th place. The final individual event of the Champ was the boys’ 200m Butterfly. Land claimed a bronze medal before Binning led his age group from the start claiming gold, almost 20 seconds ahead of his nearest competitor. Gencas just missed out, finishing in 4th place.
The highs and lows of swimming were never more evident than when 10 year old Raheel Mahmood thought his sterling performance in the aged 10/11 200m Butterfly had bagged him his first ever County medal, a silver. As one of Town’s youngest swimmers he was distraught to learn that he had been disqualified for an incorrect last turn.
Moule claimed a well earned silver medal in the 100m Backstroke final before forming part of the quartet with Jopson, Hagan and Jayne Gimbird to secure a fantastic bronze medal in the 4x50m Medley Relay Team.
Moule’s success at this year’s Champs earned her the coveted Top Girl Award in her age group and Lane collected the Top Boy Award in his age group. Binning’s dominance not only gave him the Top Boy Award in his age group, but he retained the prestigious most ‘Outstanding Performance’ by a 11/14 year old swimmer by earning the most points of any junior swimmer.
The BAGCAT Relay Teams comprising Jayne Gimbird, Holly Hagan, Isabelle Jopson and Amelia Moule for the girls and Nathan Banga, Lewis Binning, Joshua Eguakhide and Daniel Gencas for the boys were awarded the Top BAGCAT Relay Club Award for collecting 1 gold, 1 silver and 2 bronze medals between them.
Head Coach Gary Rogers congratulated his swimmers, saying “The Essex Championships continues to show Romford Town’s depth of talent with a final medal tally far higher than many of the County’s larger clubs. Many more of our youngsters just missed out on medals but produced fine PBs giving them great impetus for the rest of the season. As ever the great team spirit throughout has undoubtedly been that extra factor that helped so many to raise their game.”