Wow, what a weekend Geelong Swimming Club had! A huge congratulations to all our swimmers around the country, be it Surf Life Saving or Pool Swimming.

For the Club and our pool swimmers, Country Champs is a rite of passage type competition. Three days of hard racing in multiple events and in whatever the weather decides to throw at us. For me personally Countries is my favourite meet of the year, it ’s a chance to see friends, laugh, tell stories and do the thing we love (race) in whatever competitive condition we turn up in.

As my first year at the helm I couldn’t not be prouder of how we performed – both in the pool and towards one another over the three days.

From a performance point of view we swam awesome. Making 98 finals, 19 relay medals and 42 individual medals, coming second behind Traralgon in the over all point score with a total of 1564 points. Madi Cooper also won the Australia Day medal for being the fastest athlete (Highest FINA point score) of the meet – awesome effort.

Performance aside the most enjoyable part of countries was the interaction we had with one another (and the greater country swim teams). The camaraderie offered was energising; chants and cheering non-stop for the three days and staying till the end to support the athletes that won trophies or medals, there are 100’s of small gestures that made the weekend what it was.

A huge thank you to Zach and Emy for taking lead of the swimmer and parents chants, Martine for organising relays and general admin tasks, the coaches for doing everything you see them do and more thanks for the things you don’t see them do. Thank you to the parents for putting the time and effort into your children, the investment is worth it. Thank you to Swim Vic, BSW and the Officials for making the meet function as well as it did. Thank you to the committee for putting in all the back end work (tent, rosters, catering, etc) and to the sponsors for funding our journey towards excellence. And thank you to the swimmers, the dedication this sport requires to be successful is great, greater than any sport I know, but what you put in is what you get out and it felt like we got allot out of this weekend.

We have set the standard for the year and I can’t wait for what is to come.