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News from Doncaster's Clubs, 2010

Keep up to date with what's happening in and around Doncaster Swimming. Let everyone else know what your club is up to too, submit your news to the webmaster.

The Stories behind the Headlines (from Doncaster's Clubs)

Record win for Adwick at Mets

17 Oct: Adwick walked away with the Top Club trophy at DMASA Champs this afternoon in some style. It sounded suspiciously like the announcer stated a record number of points! If so, that's an awesome achievement. If it wasn't, well it was still a huge win over arch-rivals Armthorpe Kingfishers. Well done Adwick.

Final scores were as follows: Joseph: Pick of the Records

2Armthorpe Kingfishers283
3South Axholme Sharks198
4Spa Askern196
5Edlington Stingrays142
6Rossington Rascals113
7Minsthorpe Marlins38
8Thorne Tigers27
9Don Valley Dolphins26

Joe: Pick of the Records Big record for Heidi During the afternoon we enjoyed 6 new Championship Records, including two biggies! In the very first event Laura Brookes (Edl) destroyed the 9 years 50m Backstroke set last year by Tyler Dodson (Adw). A few events later, one of the oldest records on the books had 0.05s shaved from it by Joseph Gatus (Spa). It had belonged to former National Backstroke Champion Trevor Eland (Arm) since 1986! Well done Joseph.

Almost immediately after that, another old one went. This one was also held by a former National Champion. Sam Seddon (Adw) set the 12 years 100m Butterfly record back in 1993, he went on to win National Breaststroke titles and was part of the all conquering Dartes Dream Team. 2010 National Squad member Joe Litchfield (Spa) knocked off 0.41s.

Laura Brookes and Amber Hardy (Adw) look set to rewrite the girls record books between them. Amber claimed two in the first gala and returned to set the Freestyle this week too. Laura set her second of the day in the 50m Butterfly - again snatching it off Tyler from the year before.

If the young guys were satisfied with just shaving a few tenths from the previous record, Heidi Smith (Spa) was determined to make a bigger impression. 2007 National medallist Enya Booth (Spa) had set the 13 years girls record that same year in 1:11.27. Heidi chopped off a whopping 4 seconds to touch in 1:07.20. Silver medal winner Shannon Dodson (Adw) was also 3sec inside the previous record just a body length and a bit behind.

Friendly Fun at Grimsby

Thorne joined with Sharks for an Arena League style friendly Thorne joined with Sharks for an Arena League style friendly 9 Oct: While Dartes were at Ponds Forge flying the Doncaster flag against the big guns in the Arena League, South Axholme Sharks and Thorne Tigers combined forces to contest an Arena League style friendly gala at Grimsby's Scartho Road pool on the same evening.

They were up against 3 teams from the combined Cleethorpes and Scunthorpe Aquatics partnership and City of Lincoln Pentaqua. They competed over the same events as the league proper, with the exception of the last 2 events which were 4x50m teams instead of the 6x50m of the actual league.

As most of our clubs will agree, having smaller memberships means it's often quite difficult to field complete teams to compete with the larger clubs. That was one of the reasons behind the formation of the Dartes umbrella club for competing at Yorkshire Championships and the like. For this gala, Thorne and Sharks combined their might in a similar way and discovered that what Thorne were missing Sharks seemed to have, and what Sharks were missing Thorne had.

As this was a friendly gala it was an ideal opportunity to combine forces and try a joint venture for the very first time. The conclusion was a massive success and the 'Tiger Sharks' (perhaps) finished in 2nd place. The next Arena League friendly gala is on 13th November at Scunthorpe. Once more it will be contested by a combined SAS and Thorne squad.

We'll bring you those results just as soon as we have them. Thanks to Kevin Dunne, Head Coach of South Axholme Sharks for letting us know about this fun friendly gala.

It's Official: Adwick Div2 Champs

27 Sep: All the results have been collated from this year's Barnsley Minors League, and as expected Adwick are officially the Division 2 Champions. Congratulations to Head Coach Neil Stephenson and all of his swimmers.

Adwick Head Coach Neil: Division 2 Champions Adwick gain promotion to Division 1, which this year was dominated by Sheffield City. Newly promoted, and with the arrival of new Head Coach Colin Cunningham in January, Sheffield City managed to go all 4 rounds of top flight BML action unbeaten. A dream start for the former Olympian and Commonwealth Silver medalist. Let's hope Coach Neil can work similar magic at Adwick next year and put in a strong challenge.

Ironically, the club Colin had led between 1982 and 1995 looks likely to be the team making way for Adwick at the opposite end of the table. Rotherham Metro probably suffer in much the same way as Doncaster's leading clubs in the BML. Once you remove Yorkshire finalists from their teams (as per the league requirements), it's often a struggle to find the depth to stay in the top division. The result is often a yo-yo between the two divisions: Armthorpe down last year, Rotherham this, while Adwick pop back up.

Edlington Head Coach Jeff: Division 4 Champions While Sheffield City dominated Division 1, neighbouring City of Sheffield continued their relentless charge back to the top. A minor hick-up in round 1 their only aberration in Division 3. 4 wins out of 5 earns them promotion for the 2nd year straight and sets up Division 2 for battle royale next year. What will be the outcome between Armthorpe, promoted Sheffield, and relegated Rotherham all hunting that elusive promotion spot? Add to the mix a very handy South Axholme team and Division 2 looks set to be the one to watch next year for drama and excitement. Can City of Sheffield march straight back to Division 1 after dropping out of the league for a year, or can someone halt them at the last step?

We won't know for sure which teams contest each division until after the AGM though, shuffling 17 teams into 4 divisions won't be easy. Down in Division 4, the fate of Edlington Stingrays is therefore still to be decided. 3 wins out of 3 leaves Coach Jeff Squires and his Green Machine the Division 4 Champs and worthy of promotion. Let's hope they're rewarded with a Division 3 spot for next year to see them bounce straight back up after relegation.
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3 Wins out of 3 for Adwick in Dinsdale League

25 Sep: This weekend's Dinsdale League tussle was between Doncaster's perennial powerhouse teams: Adwick and Armthorpe Kingfishers. The Dinsdale League is Doncaster's own take on the popular Duel Meet format and with many of the regular stars for both teams prevented from competing in this league, it's an intended opportunity to bring through less experienced swimmers and introduce them to team galas.

Both teams impressed on the day, a strong indication that Doncaster Swimming is set to enjoy more bright years in the near future. The overall result was Armthorpe scoring 187 (A team: 143 and B team: 44) trailing the day's winners Adwick who scored 251 (A team: 169 and B team: 82).

For Adwick that's 3 wins out of 3 this year so far, putting them top of the league table. They have one final fixture remaining when they host neighbours Spa Askern.

As always, many thanks to all the helpers on poolside and on the desk as well as congratulations to the swimmers for another great performance.

Thank you Neil Stephenson (Head Coach, Adwick) for the gala report.
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Home Glory for Rascals in Pocklington Div 3

Rossington RASCALS 19 Sep: Rossington gained a storming second victory in Division 3 of the Pocklington Times League this year. It's all down to the last gala of the year to decide who goes up -- Rossington are currently in first place and will have to hold their breath until 5th October to see if they are promoted.

The final round will take place at Pocklington but won't feature the Rascals (it's their scheduled gala to miss). Which means their current 3 point cushion on top of the table is a little precarious. If Knottingley or local rivals Edlington Stingrays win the final round, they will take the division 3 title. If neither takes advantage of Rossington's absence to claim maximum points, but one finishes 2nd, gala points scored on the day will be the deciding factor. Three teams in it then, two of them from Doncaster, and Rossington currently in the driving seat.

Drama and a nail biting finish in store for the 5th.
But that is then and this victory is for now.

For Rossington this was a real team effort from the first relays through the individuals and onto the final Freestyle relays with the Rascals maintaining the lead throughout, even though Edlington kept threatening to overtake. There were individual victories for Josh Sellars, Caitlin, Josh Greenhalgh, Aaron, Farrah, Becky, Katie, Lauren, Jacob and Jason, which when combined with the relays teams meant the home team won 20 of the 48 races!

Rossington Coach Clive said "There were too many excellent swims to mention them here but suffice to say the coaching team are very proud of our swimmers, especially with 23 personal bests being recorded."

The final result was Rossington 135, Edlington 121, Pocklington 108 and Bridlington 101.

On a personal note from Clive: Well done to all our swimmers and many thanks to all our poolside helpers and officials. Many thanks also to the officials and teams from Edlington, Bridlington and Pocklington on making this a great event.

And of course, many thanks to Clive for the gala report.
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Doncaster's Clubs Dominate in PTL - Armthorpe Take League Title

Armthorpe Kingfishers 12 Sep: It was a good day for Doncaster Swimming in the Pocklington Times League. The final positions for division 1 see our clubs take the top 3 positions with New Earswick 4th and City of Wakefield, last year's league champions, relegated in 5th.

Spa Askern won on the day, to take their cumulative gala score to 524 compared to Armthorpe's 511. But with 2 wins and 2 second place finishes this year, Armthorpe's consistency gives them the league title with 14 league points to Spa's 12 (2 wins, 1 second, and a 4th place). Adwick placed 3rd overall with 9 league points (1 win, a couple of 3rd places, and a 4th ).

Next season looks set for another exciting local tussle between our three division 1 teams.
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Armthorpe Sit Atop Pocklington

Dave Holmes Pocklington Times Victory at First Attempt 4 Sep: After the weekend's Pocklington Times League action at Adwick, Armthorpe's new Head Coach Dave Holmes had reason to celebrate. After missing round 1 (each team misses one fixture) the Kingfishers have been clawing back the early lead of the other teams all year. Round 4 saw them close that gap and take the top spot in the division 1 table.

They didn't have it all their own way though with local rivals Spa Askern hot on their heels, and arch-rivals and hosts Adwick, only 10 points adrift too. As Peter Litchfield later remarked: "Three DQs cost SPA dearly and a chance of holding onto the league trophy". A trophy they've won for 2 of the past 3 years.

With the final round taking place this coming Sunday (12th September) Armthorpe's 3 point lead is almost enough to crown them League Champions. For that to change, Spa would need to win their home fixture with Armthorpe coming last (or not arriving).

Or in Peter's words: "So, remember all Armthorpe swimmers warm up is 3.00am on Tuesday morning at Sunderland, don't be late!"

At the other end of the table there's still all to swim for too. Here are the connotations to watch out for:

An exciting finale is on the cards. But whichever of Doncaster's clubs you represent, let's get behind Adwick on Sunday and help keep 3 of our teams in the top flight.
View League ...

Doncaster Met Championships, 2010

12 Sep: We're nearing the start of a new season, so the annual Doncaster Mets Championships must be just around the corner. Doncaster's premier local meet is an opportunity for our clubs to show off their talent and for that talent to do battle for the honour of being crowned the best in Doncaster.

There aren't just medals up for grabs, there's history to be re-written. Some of the championship records go back a decade or more, others were set just last year. Either way, smash just one of those records and your name goes down in Doncaster Swimming history.

For those of you a little way off record breaking performances, there's club pride to swim for. Every finalist scores points for their club. Whether fighting for the top-club championship shield or just looking to finish higher than last year, every point counts towards your club's final position. So be sure to enter every event on the programme.

Can you spot all 3 of Dartes' Lead Coaches? The entry deadline for this year's DMASA Championships is sneaking up fast: 12th September!

Entries are through your feeder clubs, so be sure to get your entries handed in to your clubs ASAP.

The detail:

As an additional Mets related competition, can you identify all 3 of the Dartes lead coaches in the Mets medal presentation above? There are bonus points if you can also answer the following:

Get your entries to your feeder clubs quickly, don't miss out.
Mets entries that is, not competition entries.

Narrow Win for Armthorpe

Armthorpe Kingfishers 11 Jul: This weekend's Dinsdale League tussle was between Armthorpe Kingfishers and Rossington Rascals. Clive Greenhalgh provides us with the Rascal's view of the afternoon.

Armthorpe are one of our big local rivals and it has been a number of years since we have been in the same league together, so it was with great interest and excietment that we welcomed them to our pool for our final Dinsdale gala of the year. The club welcomed Alexia Lovell for her first cap as well as welcoming back Josh and Leoni Moore to the gala team - all three performed brilliantly with personal bests all round.

With such a large number of events and swimmers it is difficult to focus on individual swims but with 27 personal bests on the day the swimmers performed brilliantly with race wins for Caitlin, Aaron, Andy, Sasha, Jason, Josh Greenhalgh and Lucy.

The overall result was much closer than expected with Armthorpe scoring 217 (A team: 169 and B team: 48) and Rossington scoring 203 (A team: 145 and B team: 58). Well done Armthorpe for a well earned victory.

As always, many thanks to all the helpers on poolside and on the desk as well as congratulations to the swimmers for another great performance.
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Promotion for Adwick in BML2?

Promoted: Adwick (tbc) 10 Jul: We're still awaiting official confirmation, but after a close tussle between local rivals Adwick and Armthorpe in division 2 of Barnsley Minors League, the last two fixtures (June and July) look to have crowned Adwick as promoted team.

Division 2 has been a pretty much Doncaster affair this year with 4 of the 5 teams (SAS and Spa Askern too). After just missing out on promotion in the final gala in the series last year, Adwick returned even more determined and even stronger for 2010. They faced a tough challenge all year from an Armthorpe team relegated from division 1 and looking for a quick bounce back. With a single promotion place, one team was always going to miss out.

While Adwick will rise to division 1 in 2011 and put up a strong challenge (their team gets stronger with each passing year), Armthorpe will face another tough campaign against a relegated team looking to bounce straight back. As if that wasn't enough of a challenge, they're also likely to meet City of Sheffield too, as they continue their rampaging promotion spree heading back to the top of the league after dropping out for a year.

As soon as we have official confirmation of the league standings we will publish them.

Sharks Keep Pressure On

South Axholme Sharks 10 Jul: The West Lindsey Leisure Centre was the venue for round 4 of the Pocklington Times League Division 2, as South Axholme Sharks played hosts in their adopted pool on Saturday.

It was a very close Gala between 3 teams with just 6 points separating the top 3 teams. After being relegated from Division 1 last year, Scarborough took the win today to put themselves on top of the table with just 1 round to go. Hot on their heels, just 3 points adrift, were promotion rivals South Hunsley who find themselves matching Scarborough's 11 league points, and less than 10 gala points behind the leaders overall. In pursuit of South Hunsley were Doncaster's South Axholme Sharks. Another 3 points behind on the day, but 2 crucial league points to lift them a little further away from relegation trouble. Luke sub minute

A twist of fortune saw the division leaders, South Holderness, pushed to 4th place on the day which saw them slip to 3rd in the division table.

A happy Sharks Head Coach, Kevin Dunne said: "I was very pleased with our Girl relay Teams as we never dropped a point! We came first on every occassion in all the Freestyle and Medley relays in all the girls ages of 11, 13, 15, and Open." Unfortunately, 4 DQs, and 2 races which they failed to contest cost them the gala (even 4th place in each of those 6 races would have been enough to win the day).

Special mention was also made of a certain Luke Shyplka who broke the magical 1minute barrier for 100m Freestyle (59.88). Well done Luke.
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Minsthorpe and Edlington get Friendly

Edlington Stingrays 27 Jun: It was a busy weekend for Doncaster's swimmers with the Dartes Coaches Workshop, Rossington and Dearne Valley in Dinsdale action, and Minsthorpe hosted a friendly gala with Edlington too.

The main aim for the Gala, from Edlington's point of view, was to bring along a group of 1st time swimmers to let them see how a gala runs and what to expect. "We did actually bring some of our more experience swimmers to give support and also to make up the numbers" said one of the Team Managers. All the Edlington kids enjoyed themselves and the Stingrays would like to thank Dave Drabble and all his helpers for making this a fun and exciting gala for the kids. No one went away empty handed either as there were lots of spot prizes on offer.

So on behalf of Jeff Squires and his merry team of helpers, a big thank you to Minsthorpe for hosting the event - hopefully the first of many.

2 Dinsdale Victories out of 3 Ain't Bad

Rossington RASCALS 27 Jun: Galas against Dearne Valley are always fun events and one on a day when another small sporting affair was taking place was no exception.

Dearne Valley are rebuilding and turned up early as most people wanted us to start as soon as possible for some other reason. Both teams worked together with the set up of the pool and the officiating of the gala for which we are very grateful and after a shortened warm up the competition started.

Regular practice on starts and turns as well as speed work over 50s really paid dividends as we established a solid lead in the relays and maintained it through the individuals. There were a number of very close calls and the noise from poolside and the balcony was deafening at times - this is a testamant to both teams and made the whole event entertaining and exciting.

On the day there were 29 personal bests with Megan getting two in successive races in the same stroke! The race winners on the day were Joseph, Caitlin, Aaron, Freddie, Ben Carville, Sasha, Lucy, Michael, Lauren, Andy, Joel and Eddie; the relay teams were also strong with Rossington winning 15 out of the 17 races.

The final score was Rossington 237 (171 + 66) and Dearne Valley 178 (119 + 59).

Well done swimmers, congratulations to Dearne Valley for a fine gala, and many thanks to all the officials for your help.

Latest from BML4

Edlington Stingrays at Minster 2010 13 Jun: Another closely fought gala in BML Div 4 saw the Stingrays come away with the honours.

Rossington's Rascals at Minster 2010 Hot on their heels were the RASCALS of Rossington, and coach, Clive Greenhalgh sent the following report:

BML gives us another close gala.

Every time we train harder and bring together a stronger team, Edlington match us and Minsthorpe continue to chip away as their squad grows. This was another fine performance by our swimmers with 35 Personal Bests and victories for Sasha, Andy, Becky, Chris, Chelsea, Jason, Caitlin, Josh Sellars and Farrah. But one must not forget about our relay teams who also scored us important points - in an event like this we need contributions from everyone and the swimmers did not disappoint.

The (still to be officially confirmed) result in the end was Edlington 1st, Rossington 2nd and Minsthorpe 3rd - congratulations to Edlington.

The event would not have gone ahead without Dave Drabble refereeing the event - for this we are very grateful, and he did a brilliant job in his first gala.

Many thanks to all our volunteers on the day and congratulations to the swimmers on another fantastic event.

B Grade Extravaganza

Rossington RASCALS 23 May: Spending a whole summer's day on poolside may seem a bit of a waste of the good weather but our dedicated swimmers are hungry for success and personal bests. The morning, bright and warm, saw Joseph, Joshua G, Josh S, Chelsea, Farrah, Beatrice, Leah, Morgan and Eva P strut their stuff. Joseph was our 9 year old boy's team and he dipped under the magic 50 seconds for 50m freestyle for the first time on his way to two personal bests and three medals.

The girl's 10 year old team was represented by Morgan, Leah, Beatrice and Eva P. Beatrice rocked with four personal bests whilst Eva P achieved two, Leah knocked off a whopping 9 seconds from her IM - Morgan has worked very hard recently and although got no PBs on the day, was in touching distance of all her newly acquired best times.

Josh Sellars came back after his extended tour of the US with the top boy's trophy for the 11 year old boys, alongside two personal bests and four medals. Joshua G was our representative in the 13 year old boys age group and he continues to smash his PBs at every event - three today in his new age group as well as 5 medals.

Finally in the morning we saw the older girls, Chelsea and Farrah hit new heights. Farrah claimed her much chased Yorkshire time in Backstroke and Chelsea grabbed the Breaststroke gold. Farrah came away with 5 medals and 3 personal bests while Chelsea received 3 medals and 2 personal bests. We also adopted Lola from Louth Swimming Club who was on her own and needed Team Manager support - well done Sandra, Dot and the Team Captains.

So that was the morning and Dot and Sandra looked worn out already after a moderately quiet set, wait for the afternoon hordes to decend!

The afternoon saw Ben C, Adam C, Freddie, Michael, Jacob G, Aaron, Eva C, Lucy, Caitlin, Sasha, Zara, Katie and Lauren all in the house - the greenhouse! Lucy was our 9 year old girl's team and she did not disappoint - breaking her minute barrier on 50m Breaststroke as well as 4 medals and 1 personal best. We had a gaggle of 10 year old boys in Ben C, Freddie and Adam C and they all performed brilliantly. Ben came away with 5 medals and 3 personal bests; Adam got 2 medals and 1 personal best while Freddie continued on his rapid improvement and got 1 medal and 2 personal bests.

We always have a strong crew of 11 year girls and this year was no different - Katie, Caitlin, Eva C, Zara and Lauren. Katie was too fast for the back and breast while Caitlin was too fast for the front and back - this didn’t stop them with Katie getting 3 personal bests, a medal and 2 speeding tickets while Caitlin received 2 medals and got 3 personal bests. Eva C continues to improve in her Breaststroke and got another personal best, Zara having moved up to A squad only recently is improving throughout all her strokes and got 2 personal bests for her efforts. Lauren W achieved a clean sweep of personal bests and 4 medals to boot (missing out on top girl by 1 point). Sasha represented the 13 year old girl's team and came out of the event with her head held high - 3 personal bests and 4 medals.

Finally we had the boy's 14 year old team made up of Aaron and Jacob G. The improvement in both boys has been rapid recently and this was borne out in today's performance - Aaron received 5 medals and got 4 personal bests while Jacob came away with 4 medals. A day like this does not run smoothly without our volunteers and I must firstly thank our adult helpers: Sandra, Jill, Dot, Neil, Nigel, Paul, Ian, Glynn, Georgina and Clive. But special thanks must go to our stand-in team captains: Farrah, Chelsea, Aaron and especially Jacob (there for both sessions) who made sure all our younger swimmers felt comfortable and knew what to do in their races - we couldn’t have done it without you.

Thanks once again to Clive Greenhalgh for keeping us up to date with Rossington's achievements.

Seaside jollies for the RASCALS

Rossington RASCALS 15 May: Most people made a day of our trip to Bridlington; candy floss, fish and chips and rides on the dodgems the flavour of the day. The kids even had time to have a game of football against the oldies on the beach before the real entertainment started (final score 6 all).

After the RASCALs won their last Pocklington League encounter at Knottingley the other teams in the league look to have stepped up their training, and their squads looked much stronger and the results bore this out.

The hosts, Bridlington, were strong throughout and we were always working hard to keep in touch with Knottingley and Pocklington but with a run of victories in the individuals we were able to hold our own. First places for Farrah, Jacob, Katie, Becky and Chelsea with a huge number of very impressive personal bests from nearly all the other swimmers - the effort in training is really paying off. Once again I cannot finish without mentioning Jodie who stood in for Zara, who wasn't well, and swam two great relays.

There were 23 personal bests achieved today.

The final score was Bridlington 136, Knottingley 128, Rossington 112 and Pocklington 99 - thank you to Bridlington for a well run gala.

Well done to all the swimmers and many thanks to all the helpers and officials.

Thanks once again to Clive Greenhalgh for another gala report from Rossington.
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Adwick Win Bridon, It's Official

Adwick Win Bridon Shield 11 May: It took a while to sort out, but Adwick have finally been announced as the Official winners of 2010 Bridon Shield after a 5 point win (TBC) over arch-rival Armthorpe, in what was a very close tussle. On the day Adwick won 41% of the Gold medals available, and almost as many Silver medals (13 Gold, 12 Silver) - a superb achievement and well worthy of their prize.

Congratulations to Head Coach Neil Stephenson, his team of coaches and helpers, but most of all his super squad of swimmers.

The final scores (still to be confirmed) for all the competing teams is show below.

3Spa Askern84
5South Axholme16

Dinsdale Win for Rossington

24 Apr: Another of our local Duel Meets in Doncaster's Dinsdale League. Today Rossington travelled to Spa Askern for a well fought gala. Here's Clive Greenhalgh with the Rossington perspective of the afternoon.

Rossington RASCALS RASCALS come back with a victory

A warm Saturday afternoon in Askern and it gave Rossington a well earned victory in the Dinsdale League. Having close to full team made up of swimmers with tenacious spirit makes a good combination for the RASCALS and they did us proud.

Competition was fierce and the teams were close all the way through the gala. Personal bests and first places were in abundance today and this is all we can ask of our swimmers. There were first places in the individual races for Joel, Michael, Caitlin, Aaron, Andy, Freddie, Ben Carville, Jason, Eddie and Sasha, but the contributions from the whole team in the relays is what can make the difference in these type of events.

It was Jodie's and George’s first gala and we welcome them to the gala squad and they performed well scoring vital points. Overall this was a great team performance and it is brilliant to get back to winning ways.

The final score was Rossington 223 (A - 163, B - 60), Spa Askern 209 (A - 156, B - 53). Thank you to Spa Askern for a well run gala. There were 36 personal bests achieved today. Well done to all the swimmers and many thanks to all the helpers and officials
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Minster Meet 2010 - a huge success again

18 Apr: "Well done Dartes, another great event - our kids really had a great time" - Clive Greenhalgh, Rossington RASCALS.

Clive is always a regular on deck with his RASCALS at Dartes meets and always manages to drag along a strong support team of team managers too. It was no surprise that his meet report was the first to arrive to tell you all about Minster 2010 from the Rossington perspective.

Here's what he had to say (thank you Clive):

Rossington's Morning Rascals A long day and hard competition for our supporters and the swimmers alike. The aims of the club at these type of events are for the swimmers to enjoy the event, compete well and to come away with success; whether success is medals, speeding tickets or personal bests. Based on this criteria this was a brilliant day for the RASCALS, they did us proud.

The morning session is always hard because the swimmers are tired and the adults shell-shocked but it did not stop our earlybirds from performing well. The 9 & 10 year old boys were Adam Cunliffe in his first individual gala and Joseph Greenhalgh - neither of them looked overawed by the occasion with Adam getting 3 personal bests and 3 medals, Joseph came away with 1 personal best and a speeding ticket. Katie Pendlebury, Caitlin Feirn and Lauren Walker made up the 11/12 year girls team and their experience shone through; Caitlin getting 1 personal best, 2 speeding tickets and a medal; Katie got one personal best and a medal while Lauren got two well earned personal bests with a lovely smooth action in her front crawl. The 13/14 year old boys team was made up of old hands Jacob Greenhalgh and Aaron Walker and they looked set for business from the outset. Aaron came away with two personal bests, one of them a huge one in the individual medley and three medals; Jacob got two personal bests, a speeding ticket and four medals - he also won the top boy award for the age group, another trophy for the cabinet.

In the afternoon we were joined by the 9/10 year old girls - Lucy Clarke, Megan Shentall, Beatrice Jones and Morgan Blunt. Once over their initial nerves it was down to the task of winning medals; Lucy did well with 3 personal bests, 2 speeding tickets and 1 medal; Megan, after a goggle malfunction got 4 personal bests and a medal; Beatrice also achieved 4 personal bests and a medal while Morgan also received 4 personal bests and a speeding ticket - this was a brilliant performance from a very young group of swimmers. Aaron ices a toe injury - with an ice cube! The 13/14 year old girls were Chelsea Eales, Sasha Gaskell and Farrah Gaskell, they were not to be outdone by the boys; Sasha achieved 1 personal best and a medal; Farrah got one personal best and 4 medals while Chelsea got a good hawl of 4 personal bests, 1 speeding ticket and 2 medals. The 11/12 year old boys were Michael Foulstone and Joshua Greenhalgh, both of whom have been working very hard in training. Michael has grown in confidence over the last couple of months and came away with 1 personal best, 1 speeding ticket and 2 medals;  Joshua achieved one personal best and two medals. Finally there was Andy Blacklock who was excellent in the support of the team all day regardless of the fact he only had one swim himself - when the time came he won the race easily but got a speeding ticket for his efforts!

In then end we came away with 35 personal bests, 10 speeding tickets & 26 medals and were the 8th best team there - not bad for a small club in Doncaster against the big boys.

Once again many thanks to our helpers; Sandra, Andy, Dot, Jill, Ian and Clive

Stronger Performance from Sharks in Round 2

South Axholme Sharks 17 Apr: It was a busy weekend of swimming with Pocklington League encounters on Saturday and the Dartes Minster Meet on Sunday, but that didn't stop South Axholme Sharks putting in fine performances at both events.

After last week's Easter disappointment in round 1, it was reassuring to see the Sharks battling for the top placings today. Before the gala could start though, Team Managers spent a few hours frantically phoning mobiles to inform swimmers of a rearranged location. What was scheduled to take place at South Holderness was quickly shifted to South Hunsley after a child threw up everywhere and closed the pool mere hours before the scheduled start.

Thankfully everyone turned up at the correct pool - even the boys!!!
A much improved performance from the last round.

The new location clearly suited the new hosts. South Hunsley took full advantage of their home club status to win by 11 points (135). South Holderness lost their home advantage, and subsequently finished as equal runners-up with South Axholme (124 points). Clearly a day for southerners.

Scarborough Kingfishers brought up the rear on 84 points.
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Spa Back on Top in Pocklington Division 1

17 Apr: By their standards, a disappointing round 1 result left Spa Askern at the foot of the Pocklington Times League Division 1 table. Today's 2nd round flipped that on its head though. Armthorpe Kingfishers Spa Askern Winning the gala (143 gala points) at local rivals Armthorpe gave Spa the maximum 4 league points to put them equal first with New Earswick (3rd today) in the league standings. Considering accumulated gala points, Spa now head the league with a 30 point cushion. Quite a turn around from a single gala.

They didn't have it all their own way though. Home club Armthorpe, another of Doncaster's finest, kept the pressure on for most of the afternoon finishing 2nd (129 points). The top two spots weren't decided until the last bunch of relays where Spa's strength pulled them ahead to win by 14 points.

The other two spots were also fiercly contested. City of Wakefield and New Earswick were never separated by more than a few points all gala. In the end New Earswick edged out Wakefield by 3 points.

So after round 1, Doncaster was leading the top division in the shape of Adwick. After round 2, Doncaster still owns the top spot in the form of Spa! Adwick and Armthorpe have now both missed their scheduled gala and are looking poised for the next round. This year could well see Doncaster's three top clubs dominating Division 1. An exciting prospect for the rest of the year.
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Holidays Play Havoc for Sharks in PTL 2

South Axholme Sharks 10 Apr: When galas are scheduled for holiday periods everyone misses out, but small clubs suffer more than the rest. So it proved for South Axholme Sharks in their first round of Pocklington Times League action this year.

Travelling all the way over to Scarborough to battle the two local teams and South Holderness, they had the prospect of scratching 25% of the events before the gala had even started. As with many of our local clubs, SAS are generally short on boys, so to miss many of their regulars this weekend due to Easter holidays left them without necessary replacements. Head Coach Kevin Dunne said: "When you only have a few boys anyway with no one to take their place, we were always going to struggle".

To miss 12 of the events ruled them out of contesting 48 of the points on offer. A further DQ cost them a few more. It wouldn't have taken many of those lost points to lift them off their bottom spot (81 points) to overtake Scarborough Kingfishers (96 points), or even challenge South Holderness (114 points).

The rest of the year looks like a desperate fight to avoid relegation, although a solid result or two could quickly change that. The stronger of the two Scarborough teams took the honours on the day though with a big win (162 points).
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David and Goliath - A Day for Goliath in the Dinsdale League

10 Apr: The Dinsdale league, Doncaster's own take on the popular Duel Meet format, matched up the mighty Adwick with the RASCALS of Rossington today. With many of the regular stars for both teams prevented from competing in this league, it's an intended opportunity to bring through less experienced swimmers and introduce them to team galas.

Here's Rossington's Clive Greenhalgh with a RASCALS eye view of proceedings.

Rossington RASCALS Adwick The Dinsdale League will be tough but the RASCALS will battle.

The competition this year will be stiff in the Dinsdale league as we have joined the big boys from Adwick, Armthorpe, Spa Askern and Dearne Valley. The size of the task was apparent in the warm up when our team was made up of 36 swimmers and the Adwick girls team had 30!

But undaunted our swimmers competed brilliantly, there were a surprising number of new caps on the day with Grace and Emily Wallbank, Jenna and Carys Clark, Thomas Bennison, Charlotte and Elizabeth Johnson, Holly Smith and Ngozi Okeleke all making their first team gala appearances.

Adwick are a good team and came in with victories in 14 of the 17 relays but in the individuals there were RASCAL victories for Caitlin, Aaron, Andy, Laura, Becky, Chris, Jason and Sasha. There was a total of 50 personal bests on the day.

The final score was Adwick 252 (A - 162, B - 90), Rossington 185 (A - 139, B - 46).

Well done to all the swimmers and many thanks to all the helpers and officials.
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Adwick Take Early Lead

Adwick 28 Mar: It was the opening clash in the Pocklington League first division this weekend as City of Wakefield played host to two of Doncaster's clubs and newly promoted New Earswick.

The Normanton pool witnessed an extremely close encounter that went down to the very last event - the Open Girls relay. With the points level between Adwick and New Earswick, and City of Wakefield and Spa Askern only a whisker behind them the gala went right down to the wire. The strength of the Adwick girls was just enough to win the day and give them an early lead in Division 1.

The home team finished 4 points adrift on 115 with Spa finding themselves in the uncustomary position of bringing up the rear on 110 points.

Easter holidays meant a lot of swimmers were missing from all the teams which visibly affected Spa who failed to field any 11 and under relays and allowed four individual swims to go uncontested too; costing them dearly.

Thanks to Peter Litchfield (Spa Askern) for the results and gala report.
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Armthorpe Stacking up the Points

Armthorpe Kingfishers 27 Mar: It was the start of a busy weekend for Doncaster's clubs so only fitting that 4 of them should contest round 2 of BML division 2. The all Doncaster affair was won by Armthorpe Kingfishers for their 2nd win out of 2 in this league so far (see below). Relegated from divison 1 last year, they won by a tiny margin over local rivals Adwick who narrowly missed out on promotion. Prepare yourselves for a fierce promotion battle between these two for the rest of the year.

At the other end of the fight, South Axholme Sharks comfortably secured the 3rd spot over Spa Askern.

We hope to publish the results and league tables for the BML campaign shortly, but have been asked to wait for official confirmation before doing so. Please be patient.

Strong Start for Doncaster's Clubs

Armthorpe Kingfishers 13 Mar: In the opening weekend of BML div 2, Armthorpe and South Axholme Sharks produced solid performances to claim first and second place respectively.

Trailing in 4th place though was our other representative: Spa Askern.

Sharks Head Coach, Kevin Dunne said: "[We] finished in second place which I was extremely delighted with considering we just avoided the drop to Div 3 by a solitary point last year. It was a good start to the competition by us and hope we can keep the momentum going. We have no time to rest as the next round is at Adwick in 2 weeks time."

We hope to publish the results and league tables for the BML campaign shortly, but have been asked to wait for official confirmation before doing so. Please be patient.

Strong Win for Rossington in PTL 3

Rossington RASCALS 8 Feb: Division 3 of the Pocklington Times League is shaping up into a very exciting battle. Three teams are equal on 6 points each, and two of those are level pegged on cumulative gala scores too. Both of our teams are right up there in the thick of it.

In a bizarre twist, Rossington Rascals and Edlington Stingrays switched positions from gala 1, and very nearly swapped scores too. Today it was Rossington's turn to win with 126 points. That was 3 points more than Edlington won the last round, and those 3 points proved crucial in the division table. Edlington were pipped to 2nd place by Knottingley, 119 points to 116, exactly matching Rossington's score from round 1.

That leaves Edlington and Knottingley exactly level (points and cumulative scores) with the Rascals raising the roof with the tiniest of leads.
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Home Win for Edlington in Pocklington Times League Opener

Edlington Stingrays 24 Jan: Division 3 of the Pocklington Times League got underway this afternoon at Edlington Sports Centre. Both of Doncaster's representatives in Division 3, Edlington Stingrays and Rossington Rascals, were in action with the home club taking the spoils - but only just.

Here's a Rossington's eye view of how the gala unfolded, courtesy of Jill Greenhalgh.

2010 starts with a very close contest.

When you have 22 swimmers it takes a mammoth team effort to compete against full strength squads - well this is what the RASCALS did again today; all the swimmers played their part and as a parent (of three of the swimmers) I bask in the shared glory of our young athletes.

Rossington Rascals The relays are always a nervous start but a third place for the 11 year old boys and then a first for the girls settled early jelly-legs. We got to the end of the Medley relays in joint first place. Going into the individuals we knew that we would have to work hard to keep up as we had to drop three races - well the boys and girls didn't disappoint. First places from Josh S, Caitlin, Katie, Joshua G, Farrah, Andy (2), Aaron and Chelsea were brilliant (and sometimes close). From the other races there were personal bests and great efforts from swimmers who turned up after the winter flu (Jacobs G and W).

Back to the relays and we were in equal first. This is when a deep squad helps and our valiant swimmers were caught up by Edlington and Knottingley even though all our swimmers swam their hearts out - so many close finishes, it is hard to watch sometimes.

Our fantastic swimmers were: Eddie, Joseph, Josh S, Ben C, Lucy, Katie, Caitlin, Leah, Jacob W, Joshua G, Lauren W, Jacob G, Aaron, Shannon, Chelsea, Sasha, Farrah, Andy, Jordan, Laura, Lauren P and Jo.

In the end the result was: Edlington 123, Knottingley 120, Rossington 116 and Bridlington 104 - eight points away from victory but in touch with glory.
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