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Coach Ben Smith impressed with showing at short course championship

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Top performer: Brandon Adkins was impressive at the Bermuda Amateur Swimming Association Short Course Championship which took place at the National Sports Centre on the weekend. (Photograph by Akil Simmons)

National swimming coach Ben Smith believes that the level of performances displayed at last weekend’s Bermuda Amateur Swimming Association Short Course Championships indicates that he island’s swimmers are back on track in time for a busy international schedule.

Approximately 100 participants competed in the championship, which was held over three days at the National Sports Centre in what was the first staging of the event since its premature end as Covid-19 restrictions took effect on island in 2020.

“I think we're starting to see ourselves rebuild after the kind of shutdown and issues that we've had because of Covid-19 and it is exciting to see. We are looking forward to seeing those results happen, not just locally but internationally and all of our swimmers over the weekend showed that we are on track to be able to perform at the highest level again,” said Smith.

Action from the Bermuda Amateur Swimming Association Short Course Championship which took place at the National Sports Centre on the weekend. (Photograph by Akil Simmons)

The coach underlined that he was extremely impressed with the all-round results and while he could not yet confirm any records, as those are still being ratified, Smith pointed to a high number of personal best swims as indication of growth among the local swimmers.

"This was an amazing competition. It was really exciting to be able to put a championship back in the water since that time and you could tell the swimmers have been prepared and were excited to have that opportunity,“ said Smith.

"I would say almost every swimmer was able to get a personal best time including senior swimmers that don't always get opportunities to lower their best times just because usually they're fighting to take off one hundredth of a second,“ Smith shared.

Action from the Bermuda Amateur Swimming Association Short Course Championship which took place at the National Sports Centre on the weekend. (Photograph by Akil Simmons)

Brandon Adkins and Thomas Cechini were among the top competitors over the weekend with Smith also pointing to the times registered in the 100 freestyle for girls, as positive signs for the future.

“Brandon Adkins has been somebody that has been progressing forward over the last several years. Some of the swims that he put in over the weekend were absolutely spectacular.

“Thomas Cechini is another swimmer who put together some really impressive events. In the 1,500 metres free, he just lit up the all the stands. Everybody got excited and was cheering for him as he was trying to get to a triple A standard, which would qualify him for this summer’s CCCAN. The 1,500 it's not normally the exciting event, but that event was extremely exciting,” Smith said.

“I also would like to highlight the there's a big barrier of going under one minute in the 100 free and this weekend we saw several girls do that for the first time, which specifically when there's been a big push for women in sport, to see the amount of young girls that are able to perform at that level was impressive.”

Action from the Bermuda Amateur Swimming Association Short Course Championship which took place at the National Sports Centre on the weekend. (Photograph by Akil Simmons)

In addition to CCCAN, Bermuda’s swimmers are expected to compete at the Carifta Championships in Barbados, the Fina World Championships in Hungary and the Commonwealth Games in Birmingham, England, this year.

Bermuda swimming coach Ben Smith

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Published March 23, 2022 at 7:26 am (Updated March 23, 2022 at 7:26 am)

Coach Ben Smith impressed with showing at short course championship

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