Glacier Bears start swim season with 15 records

Members of the Whitehorse swim club set 15 meet records - and two club records - at the Ryan Downing Memorial Swim Meet on Friday and Saturday at the Canada Games Centre.

Glacier Bears made a splash in the record books to open a new season over the weekend.

Members of the Whitehorse swim club set 15 meet records – and two club records – at the Ryan Downing Memorial Swim Meet on Friday and Saturday at the Canada Games Centre.

“It’s our first meet this year and I think we are doing quite well,” said Glacier Bears head coach Malwina Bukszowana. “The strokes are much better. We have many more kids than last year, so it’s good. I think they become more competitive and they are still having a lot of fun with it. It’s a good sign: they are happy to be here.”

Glacier Bear Adrian Robinson missed last season with a snowboarding injury, but he’s picking up right where he left off.

The 14-year-old set four meet records, two of which are also club records, in the boys 13-14 division.

“I tore a tendon in my left shoulder, so unfortunately I couldn’t swim (last season),” said Robinson.

“It’s been a pretty good start to the year, but it’s been a hard start, missing a year. I’m quite happy actually.”

Robinson set club/meet records in the 50-metre freestyle (27.04) and the 50-metre breaststroke at 34.46, which is also a AAA time.

His meet records came in the 50-metre backstroke (33.15) and the 100-metre breaststroke (1:18.31).

“I remember I swam it two years ago and I was a lot stronger back then,” said Robinson of the 50 free. “Two years later, I’ve grown a bit, I’ve developed different muscles, but I don’t have the endurance my teammates have.”

Teammate Thomas Bakica made the most amendments to the meet record book with five. Bakica set records in the 200 free (2:36.58), 400 free (5:36.97), 800 free (11:18.57), the 100 butterfly (1:28.17) and the 200 butterfly (3:16.96) in the boys 11-12 category.

Speedy siblings Rennes and Cassis Lindsay were responsible for six meet records between them.

Swimming in girls 11-12, Rennes cracked the record book in the 200 fly (2:44.94), the 100-metre individual medley (1:16.83) and the 400 individual medley (5:39.89).

Cassis put the record keepers to work following the 50 back (32.54), 100 back (1:09.40) and 100 individual medley (1:13.40) in girls 13-14.

The Lindsay sisters won eight medals combined at the B.C. AAA short- and long-course championships last season.

“We want to be better than last season, of course, so we want to have more qualifiers for AA and AAAs,” said Bukszowana. “We want to have more kids going away to swim meets, so Haines or Dino Cup or Victoria Christmas Cracker. So there’ll be more and more competing. This is the goal for the future.

“We aim for more and better, so we’ll see how it goes.”

About 125 swimmers, including 15 from Alaska’s Haines Dolphins Swim Team, took part in the Downing meet.

Other Glacier Bear standouts include Christopher Blakesley winning the 100 breast, 50 back, 50 free, 100 back, 200 breast, 100 individual medley for 9-10 boys.

Ruby Lieu-Ashthorn topped the 100 breast, 50 back and 100 back for 9-10 girls.

In eight and under, Maddy Mead won the 50 free, 50 back, 100 back and 100 free; Myles Terry won 50 free and 100 free; and Ben Qually won 50 back and 100 back.

“We’re right up there with one of our more productive years, so we’re right around 145 members, which is good,” said Glacier Bears president Shelby Workman. “We have a lot of kids right around nine, 10 years old, with less swimmer over 13, 14. So it seems to be a bit of a transition with a lot of our senior swimmers having moved on to other things.”

Contact Tom Patrick at

tomp@yukon-news.com