Synchronised Swimming: Huge success for Reading Royals at National Age Group Championships
READING Royals secured 11 medals at the Swim England National Age Group Championships to make them the most successful club in the country for the second year in a row.
In the Under 12 category, Madeleine Staples won a hat-trick of gold medals, with her fellow teammate Rebecca Saunders taking two gold medals and a silver.
On day one of the event, Staples and Saunders won the free duet competition, while the former went on to secure the free solo event ahead of her duet partner.
The pair went on to join Amelia Gelder, Eva Patrick, Louisa Horlock, Florence Blinkhorn, Charlie Razzell, Alice Bloomfield, Hayley Pullen, in sealing a fourth consecutive gold medal title in the U12 team event.
In the 13-15 category, Mimi Gray took a clean sweep of all the titles in this age group, winning the figure competition, free solo, free duet – with Alyssa Basinger – and free team events.
In the team competition, Royals defended their title by six points, and broke 67 points for their Snow White themed-routine to improve by more than 0.7 on their score from last year.
The winning team was Rachel Newman, Maddie Squire, Tara Dakovich, Beatrice Crass, Jess Smith, Gray, Basinger, Isobel Blinkhorn and Eleanor Blinkhorn.
There was more medal success in this age group with Isobel Blinkhorn winning a silver medal in the free duet competition with her partner, Eleanor Blinkhorn, swimming a dynamic routine to music from the Cirque du Soleil.
Isobel Blinkhorn also won a bronze medal in the free solo event, swimming an expressive routine to Fields of Gold.
A second Royals team – led by captain Martha Crowland and featuring Lottie Moghul, Mia Palmer, Alice Saunders, Claudia Connellan, Emilia Wood, Tara Evans, Rebecca Blakey and Molly Sexton – swam an upbeat, artistic routine to a medley of Motown songs to finish 10th out of 17 entrants.
Reading secured their 11th medal with a silver in the 15-18 age group.
Coached by double Olympian Katie Clark, the team of Alex Turrell, Teri-Faye Coupar, Harriet Smith, Anna Welland, Anna Boehning, Izzy Turrell and Cerys Larsen swam to the theme from The Transformers, impressing the judges with a compelling and powerful routine.
Performance coach Kelly Anne Russell said: “I’m really proud of our club, for the second year running we’ve achieved outstanding results.”
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