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The Gold and Silver squad finished 2018 on a high, winning medals and setting dozens of PBs at the Cumbernauld Christmas Sprints.

“It was a really young group of swimmers and for many of them their first gala away from a home pool, so it was a great learning experience,” says Junior Coach, Alan Dickson.

“They’re starting to understand how much planning it takes to swim across two sessions, making sure they’re eating the right things at the right time, and getting away from poolside during the lunchbreak to catch some fresh air.

9-year-old Emma Binnie went home with a hattrick of medals, taking second places breaststroke and backstroke over 50m, and a third place in fly. She also picked up a 1.3 sec PB in her freestyle.

“Emma was outstanding in all her swims,” comments Alan. “Although she’s still very young I’m so pleased with the progress she’s made.

“Fraser put in some very good performances which will be a boost to him now he’s getting back into full training after a shoulder injury.”

Senior squad swimmer, Adam Currie, was the elder statesman of the team. He collected a bronze medal and a PB for his 50m fly and lowered his sprint times for free and breaststroke.

According to Alan: “His stand-out swim was the fly, which was the last swim of the day, and he looked fantastic.  He took on my briefing and executed it for a really nice swim.

“His younger brother, Sam, swam all four 50m events and although he didn’t PB he was listening and taking on the learning points and executed the plans really well.

The honour of the biggest PB of the day went to Kouper Sloss who took more than 6 seconds off his 50m backstroke while Ruby McInnes sliced 3.5sec from her breaststroke and 2 secs from her free.

Lewis Bray, who’s 8, set new marks for his breaststroke and free while Niamh Hamilton lowered her times for freestyle, fly and breast.

Afterwards Alan was keen to drive home that message that swims which don’t go to plan can be as good for you as the ones that win medals.

“There were a few DQs and a few swimmers were understandably upset about that, but these are great learning opportunities – you only fail if you haven’t taken anything from that experience.

“It reinforces what we tell the swimmers at training – if you don’t swim in accordance with the rules for each stroke then at a Level 2 meet like this you are likely to find yourself disqualified.

“There’s going to have many more opportunities over the coming years to swim these events again.”