Barely two weeks after a successful meet in Nanaimo, nine Comox Valley Aquatic Club Sharks travelled to Victoria for the Island Cup. Jay Ryan and Joyce Arends, Juliana Bartemucci, Amelia Elder, Brooke Lamoureux, Emma and Ben Neufeld, Jordyn Ryan, and Gabrielle Wolfe represented the Sharks at the first “heats and finals” meet of the season.
The competition was fierce with a very fast Thunderbolt team from Oregon dominating virtually every heat. Canadian and provincial records fell as the talents of 12-year-old Tai Long Singh from the Winskill Dolphins and the swimmers (including Olympic silver medalist Ryan Cochrane) from the Victoria Academy were in attendance – a testament to the high calibre of the competitors.
Lamoureux broke her 800 free record she set at last year’s short course provincial championships, slicing off 7.12 seconds. “This is really special since we are still midseason and it was a non-tapered time,” stated coach Albert Burgund. Lamoureux collected one gold, two silver and one bronze.
Ben Neufeld, swimming in the 13-14 age category, broke three club records: the 100 free (formerly held by Travis Musgrove) and the 100 and 200 back (formerly held by Chris Donnelly). All three records were set back in October 1999. “Breaking records that have stood for 13 years is no small feat and points to the strength of the program and the talents of the swimmers – especially Ben, who is coping with a reduced training load,” commented Burgund. Neufeld hauled in four silver, topping off an awesome weekend.
Almost all the swimmers made finals with Ryan bringing home a bronze, and Wolfe garnering two gold, one silver and three bronze. “Gabrielle was swimming very well. She is trying hard to make the Age Group National Standard – which she just missed in two events – one by just a second,” remarked Burgund. “Her performances this early in the season bode well for making it to Montreal (where Age Group Nationals will be held).”
– CVAC Sharks