Elsa Parr, top, takes a breath as she races against Brooklyn Massie in the mixed 50 metre final at the Ryan Downing Memorial Swim Meet in Whitehorse on Nov. 3. Parr won with a time of 30.53 seconds, while Massie finished in a close second with a time of 31.10 seconds. (Crystal Schick/Yukon News)

Yukoners make a splash to mark the beginning of the swimming season

Nearly 120 swimmers took part in the Ryan Downing Memorial Swim Meet

Yukon swimmers kicked off their season earlier this month at the Ryan Downing Memorial Swim Meet.

The event, held on Nov. 2 and 3, saw nearly 120 northern swimmers from the Yukon and Haines, Alaska take to the pool.

Swimmers from the Whitehorse Glacier Bears, Special Olympics Yukon, Yukon’s Northern Novas Synchro Club and the Haines Dolphins Swim Team all had a chance to show off their skills.

The meet is named after 13-year-old Ryan Mariner Downing, a former Glacier Bear who died in December 1996.

It’s meant to be mostly for fun, said Malwina Bukszowana, the Bears’ head coach. Participants receive ribbons for beating their personal bests.

“It’s just to be a pleasure meet, for fun,” she said.

The meet is one of the rare events where swimmers as young as seven years old take to the pool. It’s one of only two events that the youngest swimmers are likely to take part in this season, Bukszowana said.

While record times may not have been at the top of everyone’s minds, that didn’t stop a handful of records from being broken.

The Bears’ Aidan Harvey had a very successful meet, breaking four meet records.

Competing in the boys aged 15 to 17 category, Harvey broke the record in 50m backstroke (29.88), 100m backstroke (1:03.95), 200m freestyle (2:06.83), and 400m IM (5:09.17)

Harvey also has a string of new club records to his name in the 50m backstroke (29.88), 200m IM (2:23.37), and 400m IM (5:09.17)

Yukon’s Alex Petriw also broke the meet record in 800m freestyle for boys aged 15 to 17 with a time of 9:21.27.

Bukszowana called the 16-year-old Harvey a hardworking and focused swimmer.

“What I see and hear from the coach that is coaching him is that he is still training super hard and he pays attention and he puts in 100 per cent effort when he’s in practice,” she said.

Bukszowana said Harvey is working towards the goal of appearing at the national championships.

“He definitely is going for it, so we’ll see.”

The swimmers weren’t the only ones practicing their skills poolside.

Nancy Telford, a visiting referee from Penticton, B.C., not only officiated the event but also taught officiating courses and mentored two parents working toward their referee certification.

Bukszowana said the Yukon has a few people with the qualifications to officiate events (mostly parents of former swimmers) but no one local was available for this particular meet.

This training will help increase the size of the pool of parents the club can call on for help.

According to organizers more than 150 parent volunteer positions were filled over the two days.

Contact Ashley Joannou at ashleyj@yukon-news.com

Just Posted

Yukon government was wrong in evicting youth from a group home, commissioner finds

The health department has roughly two months to respond to recommendations

Stephanie Dixon ready to dive into new role as chef de mission for 2019 Parapan American Games and 2020 Paralympic Games

“You do it because you believe in yourself and you have people around you that believe in you”

WYATT’S WORLD

Wyatt’s World

Whitehorse becomes first community north of 60 to have private pot shop

Triple J’s Canna Space opens its doors to first customers

Whitehorse council news, briefly

Some of the news that came out of Whitehorse city council this week

Snowmobiles and snow bikes descend on Mount Sima for Yukon Yamaha Uphill Challenge

“I think everyone had their eyes opened on what could be done there”

Yukon Orienteering Association starts Coast Mountain Sports Sprint Series off in the right direction

The race on April 11 was the first of five sprint races planned for the spring

Yukon gymnasts stick the landing at inaugural B.C. Junior Olympic Compulsory Championships

Seven Polarettes earned five podium finishes at the two-day event in Langley, B.C.

École Émilie-Tremblay hosts first Yukon elementary school wrestling meet of 2019

“You can grab kids and you can trip and you can do that rough play, but there are rules”

Driving with Jens: Survey says….

If you’re like me, you probably feel inundated with surveys. It seems… Continue reading

Editorial: Promising electoral reform is the easy part

Details of what that would actually look like are much harder to come by

Yukonomist: The centre of the business universe moves 4,000 k.m. northwest

The Canadian Federation of Independent Business named Whitehorse Canada’s top place to start and grow a business

Whitehorse starts getting ready for Japanese students

This summer 13 Japanese students are slated to come north

Most Read