Yukon’s swim team didn’t win medals last week at the Canada Games, but they certainly reworked their club’s record book.
Yukon swimmers, who are all members of the Whitehorse Glacier Bears Swim Club, set 13 club records while at the Games in Winnipeg, Aug. 7-11.
“It was a very good swim meet for everybody, basically,” said Yukon swim team head coach Malwina Bukszowana. “The kids had never raced a five-day swim meet, so I was surprised with how fast they went. They actually coped quite well with such long days. We were leaving at 7 or 7:30 in the morning and we come back around 10 o’clock — after nine o’clock (at night).
“There were five really hard days, with not much sleep, and they still performed really well, even on the last day. The last day was weaker, but still they performed really well.”
Yukon’s Alex Petriw logged just under half the club records on his own. The 14-year-old, who was selected to be flag-bearer for Yukon at the closing ceremonies on Aug. 13, set six club records, all in freestyle events for boys 13-14.
Petriw set records in the 50-metre (27.35), 100-metre (1:00.08), 200-metre (2:12.77), 400-metre (4:41.65), 800-metre (9:42.80) and 1,500-metre (18.36.03).
“He just swam really well,” said Bukszowana. “I think he peaked at the perfect time. He was hungry for racing.”
Petriw placed 15th in the 1,500-metre for the highest finish by a Yukon male swimmer at the Games.
Teammate Hannah Kingscote matched that with 15th in the 100-metre butterfly female event. Kingscote was the only Yukon swimmer to make two finals, also placing 16th in the 50-metre backstroke. Teammate Rennes Lindsay took 16th in the 800-metre freestyle female race.
Petriw also took 19th in the 800-metre freestyle and had five 21st place finishes in other events.
Yukon’s Thomas Bakica also set a Whitehorse club record in the boys 13-14 division. He swam the 400-metre individual medley in 5:39.14, placing 20th.
Teammate Aidan Harvey, notched a boys 15-17 record, in the 200-metre backstroke, finishing in 2:30.11 for 20th. He also placed 19th in the 50- and 100-metre backstroke events.
With a recent decision by the Glacier Bears to start keeping relay records, Yukon’s female relay teams registered five in Winnipeg.
With 11th place finishes, Emma Boyd, Cassidy Cairns, Kingscote and Lindsay set the club record in the 4×50-metre freestyle (1:56.04); Boyd, Cairns, Kingscote and Lindsay in the 4×100 free (4:19.43); and Kingscote, Kassua Dreyer, Shepherd and Boyd in the 4×100 medley (4:49.08).
Coming in 12th, Lindsay, Boyd, Dreyer and Cairns set the club record in the 4×200 free (9:37.82) and Kingscote, Cairns, Ella Pollock Shepherd and Boyd in the 4×50 medley (2:11.59).
“I told them this was the best swim meet I went to with this group,” said Bukszowana. “There were no parents, which was very important to me. My goal was to try to teach them to be independent and I actually gave them a bit of freedom, a bit of time to figure it out. So I wouldn’t give them instructions for some stuff, I’d wait for them to figure it out.”
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