Page last updated 24th June 2018

Len Badcock meet - Saturday 9th June 2018

Orange squad team photograph

This meet took place in Enfield (yes London way) on Saturday 9th June. It meant a very early start for Orange Squad, with most of us getting up between 4.30a.m. and 5a.m. to arrive at the pool by 8.30a.m.

I have to say that the day started out really well and just got better and better. I have laughed until I cried, with ribs sore and tummy aching, with all the different escapades of the day.

At the services on the motorway, one of us walked off without paying for goods (oops) - genuine mistake, but definitely requires finger printing and mug shot taken I think, and then we had the fun of finding our way out of the services as the exit sign seemed to disappear. The swimmer concerned did go back and pay for the goods by the way.

Once we got to the pool and met up with everyone, we had a cup of tea with lids that were impossible to take off without either spilling boiling hot tea all over your fingers, or knocking the whole cup over.

Phones were plugged in all over the place, as most of us had used them on route and with such a long journey, most had low batteries. There wasn't an electric socket to be found that didn't have a phone charger plugged into it.

Having then got over these little problems, the warm up began. Having been told the pool was 1m deep at the blocks, we had to re-assess the diving to ensure swimmers were safe, only to find out actually the depth was 1.8m, safe enough for all. Warm up continued and with the usual goggles issues

just before the session started.

It was about now that the organisation on poolside fell apart, with both Steve and I communicating totally ineffectively with each other, and causing chaos. Add in another coach/swimmer Robin to the equation, and more chaos reigned. Having got soaked during the warm up, we just got wetter and wetter, to the point where we may have just got in the pool.

The first event was the 200m Free, and Georgina decided to pull out as she had been unwell recently. All the other swimmers competed and swam well. I wasn't expecting any PB's from any of them today, as most had just competed in Sheffield but surprise, surprise, there was PB from Sarah Tinley and Richard Johnson.

The next event was the 50m breaststroke and unfortunately Aimee was disqualified for a one-handed touch finish. Always remember your training Aimee! Robin achieved a good time, although the chaos within the poolside organisation continued as Robin climbed out to find no one had moved his chair within this reach, leaving him stranded. The same happened to Scott, as he was also left stranded after his race.

You just cannot get the staff nowadays!

We had timings go wrong, splits times that really did not make any sense at all, watches that did not stop, watches that did not start, coaches trying to time 2-3 swimmers at the same time and failing miserably. Swimmers were all supported on the blocks appropriately (yippee did something right), although, when you have 2 swimmers in the same heat that need support and both require female helper and I am the only one, it becomes a little like poolside Twister around the blocks with one arm here and the other arm there and left foot in the middle.

The next event was the 200IM. Aimee achieved a PB time only to be disqualified again for one handed touch on the butterfly this time. However, Scott got very close to his PB time and showed a very relaxed style, with great turns. With only one swimmer in the next couple of 25m events, it gave us coaches a small breather to start to write down some of the recorded times before the 50m butterfly. Emily- Jane achieved a PB time in this and her technique is greatly improving. Still some work to do within training but certainly a great improvement. Scott achieved gold in this event, and Aimee did not get disqualified this time, learning from her mistake in the previous event.

The next big event was 100m freestyle, and Sarah swam well but her finish meant that someone overtook her in the last 5m. She was aware of her own error and was able to reflect on what went wrong and did not make the same mistake again. Emily-Jane, Robin and Scott all achieved gold medals in this event. With just a couple more 25m events closing the morning, we all sat together for lunch and cup of tea. Some managed to persuade parents to purchase items from the swim shop and others went for a small walk in the sunshine, before returning for team photos.

There was one swimmer missing for the first set of photos - bet you can all guess where he was.

Every swimmer received a rosette with their names on, and these were collected and showed with pride.

The second half started well with the 400m free event. There were some great swims here, with Scott just outside his new PB time that he set in Sheffield. Emily- Jane also got close although she did decide to swim 450m instead of just the 400m. A little cry of frustration came from her lips when she realised, as the timekeeper banged her feet on the tumble turn of the 18th length!

The afternoon was as organised as the morning in relation to the poolside staff. We really must learn to communicate with each other in a language we all understand. I'm sure the definition of communication is the transmission of a message that both the sender and receiver understand. However much we tried, something always got in the way, the noise, the swimmers, or basically the correct words would just not come out of my mouth. However, the afternoon fun was aided by the addition of Robin's hat. That just about sealed the group's seriousness of the day, as we all fell about laughing when Robin appeared in a white swimming hat. We had several scenarios put forward but the boiled egg one stuck. It became even funnier, when Robin produced a teaspoon from his breakfast that morning that had attached itself to the magnet within Robin's wheelchair. The whole group just fell about laughing.

The red strawberry shoelaces went down well - down all over the floor. We did tell Robin we were going to tie his around the block and he could have a nibble every time he turned.

The last 2 events were the 50m freestyle, and all swimmers took part in this, but Scott was in the last heat of this event and the first heat of the next one, so straight out and back onto the blocks. However, he achieved 50mfree PB time (only just but it was a PB) followed and fantastic 100m butterfly, where he got the gold. Robin, Aimee, Emily-Jane all got medals for 50m free event. Sarah got a PB time in this event as well.

Swimmers then prepared to go home. That was fun too.

The biggest problem with going home is that I decided to take a quick detour via Uxbridge (oops) went the wrong way (sack the navigator) and the Surgeoner family had taken up residence in the showers. They were still in the showers when most of us left to go home, and I suspect they were still there when the cleaners came in the next day! (only joking although I do think they were probably the cleanest swimmers ever after that long shower)

I managed to stop laughing around 8pm, when I needed to concentrate on the road ahead and most of us got home around 9pm after a very early start.

This meet was very enjoyable and we will be attending again next year. The organisers have asked for some feedback, so if any swimmers/Parents/coaches would care to add any comments let me know and I will forward on.

Karen

group shot images\llandudno2017\IMG_0858.JPG ASLEEP IMG_0823.JPG LUGGAE IMG_0657.JPG