After achieving AAA times earlier this season, Yukon’s Erin McArthur and Kirsten Berube have added another milestone to their list of accomplishments.
In the first day of competition, the two swimmers made the finals at the Western Canada Summer Games on Thursday.
The thirteen-year-old McArthur was up against swimmers years older. However, she literally gave it her best, reaching the finals of the 200-metre breaststroke with a personal best time of 2:48.12, shaving three seconds off.
“It was just all the training during the summer,” said McArthur, who finished in eighth. “It’s pretty cool, because it’s out of everyone and they’re all older than I am – by a few years, too.”
Berube, 17, made the finals of the 400-metre individual medley, despite swimming five seconds off her personal best.
“It was much better this afternoon (in the final), I felt much better about it,” said Berube. “It was a stronger race.
“I was pretty surprised (to make the final); it’s not every day a Yukon swimmer is in the finals.”
Aside from snagging eighth in the 400 IM, Berube had good swims in the 100-metre freestyle and in the 100-metre backstroke, finishing ninth in both and becoming the first alternate for the finals.
“I was close to my personal bests, so that was pretty good, considering I’ve been to a few meets already this year,” said Berube. “So just getting within that area, within a second, is pretty good.”
McArthur was not the only one from the Yukon to produce personal best times – she wasn’t even the only one in the 200 breaststroke to do it.
Teammate Rebecca Leslie logged a personal best in the event, as did rookie Dannica Nelson, knocking an incredible 15 seconds off her previous best.
Yukon’s Kevin Salesse, who is just coming off a hand injury and almost did not attend the meet, still registered a new personal best in the 200 breaststroke.
Edouard Bourcier also had a personal best time, but in the 1,500-metre freestyle.
A handful of Yukoners just missed finals, coming in as alternates (i.e. ninth and 10th).
Rebecca Leslie was second alternate for the 200 breaststroke. Haley Braga was second alternate in the 100 freestyle. Joshua Kelly was first alternate in the 100 freestyle and Taylor Campbell was second alternate in the 200-metre backstroke.
On the final day of swimming on Saturday, McArthur will be swimming in her strongest event, the 100-metre breaststroke.
“Hopefully I’ll do just as good in the 100 breaststroke,” she said. “We’ll see. We’ll take it day by day.”
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