Deepings swimmer Lilly blossoms at Grantham

Lilly Tappern achieved the Midland Qualifying time in the 50m butterfly with a four-second personal best at Grantham.
Lilly Tappern achieved the Midland Qualifying time in the 50m butterfly with a four-second personal best at Grantham.
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Deepings Swimming Club celebrated round two of the Grantham Grand Prix with a pair of Midland Qualifying times and a host of personal bests as the squad of 30 competed against swimmers from across Lincolnshire.

The Grantham Grand Prix takes place over four rounds from January to May. Swimmers compete in three events in each round with all the points combined to award the winners in each age group, 9yrs to 12yrs, at the final meet.

Lilly Tappern achieved a perfect hat-trick of personal bests, and also swam her way to two Midland Qualifying times. In the 11yrs 50m butterfly, she took a massive four seconds off her best to finish second in 33.93. She followed that with a 10-second personal best in the 200m freestyle to touch home second in 2:27.21. Both were comfortably inside the Midland Qualifying time.

Lilly completed a flawless evening of competition by taking almost four seconds off her 50m backstroke time, finishing third in 37.98. Having finished fourth in last year’s competition, she looks well-placed for a podium position this year.

In the boys 12yrs age group, Alex Sadler achieved two top-three finishes with another fine swimming display. Alex, who is looking to improve upon his fifth place last year, came second in the 50m freestyle in 31.21 and third in the 200IM in 2:48.57. Both times were narrowly outside his best.

Lucia Karic, who won the 9yrs age group at last year’s Grand Prix, is on course to medal again after a three solid swims. She excelled in the 10yrs 50m backstroke, finishing first in a time of 40.98, came second in the 200m freestyle in 2:49.31 and ended with fourth in the 50m butterfly.

Also showing well in the girls 10yrs age group was Grace Edwards, who was sixth overall last year. She came fourth in the 200m freestyle, dipping under three minutes for the first time in 2:59.30, third in the 50m backstroke (42.45) and fifth in the 50m butterfly (43.88).

The butterfly was one of the girls’ strongest events of the evening with another four swimmers achieving new PBs to finish in the top seven: Millie Bussey won the 10yrs age group in 43.06 with Maya Sangiorgio finishing seventh (44.12), while Holly Griffin came third in the 12yrs age group in 34.79, and Alice Dovey was seventh in 37.87.

Alice and Holly were also among the leaders in the 200m freestyle and 50m backstroke. Alice came fourth in the freestyle in 2:36.71 and third in the backstroke in 36.84 – both new PBs; Holly finished sixth in the freestyle (new PB: 2:37.73) and fourth in the backstroke, just outside her best time.

Completing an outstanding evening for the girls was Ella Gerrard, who knocked more than seven seconds off her 200m freestyle personal best to finish seventh in the 12yrs age group, in 2:37.94.

The boys’ team put in some strong performances across the age groups.

In the 9yrs category, William Burdock set a new personal best in the 100IM to finish fourth and swam well in the 50m freestyle for finish fifth.

Lewis Tarver led the way for the 10yrs boys with a pair of PBs, coming fourth in the 200IM (3:35.70) and fifth in the 50m breaststroke (52.15), while Louis Sanderson took an incredible 16 seconds off his 200IM time to finish third in the 11yrs age group in 3:01.24. He set another new best in the 50m freestyle, swimming 34.55 to come fifth.

Also notable in the 50m freestyle was Ryan Weise, who sliced through his heat to drop his personal best by almost four seconds at 33.85, good enough for fifth in the 12yrs age group.

Deepings Swimming Club assistant coach Zoe Fisher said: “We had a real mix of experience in the squad, with many younger swimmers and a few who have competed plenty of times before but they supported each other well and cheered on their teammates. We had some excellent performances with every swimmer achieving at least one personal best which shows what great progress they are all making.”

The rest of the team, all of whom also achieved at least one new personal best, was: Aaron Sadler, Daniel Partridge, Oliver Shepherd, Joshi Harriss, Joseph Black, Sasha Johnson, Evie Fletcher, Maddie Taylor, Georgia Hunter, Emma Dennis, Jack Cradock, James Townsin, Antony Hall, Maddy Partridge, Daisy Jungmann, Philip Jaklewicz.