BARRHEAD - Barrhead Swim Club swimmers continue to make huge strides this Swim Alberta winter club season.
On Nov. 25 and 26, about 16 swimmers travelled to Edson to compete in the Orca Swim Club's annual Splash and Dash meet, where several swimmers recorded 72 personal best times, including 33 from swimmers taking part in their first-ever swim meet, shaving off a collective 632.02 seconds.
"That is close to 11 full minutes," head coach Kylee Meunier said.
She also noted that Barrhead swimmers had 74 Top 10 finishes, including 55 in the Top 5, and five swimmers had podium finishes in their prospective age categories.
Seven Barrhead swimmers qualified for the Orcanator, a series of 25-metre freestyle heats to see who the meet's quickest swimmer is, with Robert Williams and Colby Chase taking first place in their age categories.
Barrhead swimmers competed in 25-metre and 50-metre distances of the four main swimming strokes: the butterfly, back, breast and freestyle. Meunier said several swimmers also tried their hand at the longer 100-metre distances in the freestyle, backstroke, breaststroke and the IM or individual medley, which combines all the strokes into one race.
Two swimmers, Adam Assaf and Colby Chase, also competed in the 200-metre breaststroke in the 15 and over category.
Meunier said the Edson meet was the first time this season that the club has competed in an event where they had to stay overnight in a motel.
"It just gives a different feel to everything, giving it an extra level of excitement," Meunier said, adding that a large contingent of Barrhead fans made the trip to help cheer their swimmers on.
She added time together, which helped them bond as a group, saying the swimmers especially enjoyed going out and having a team meal.
But the aspect that helped team bonding the most, Meunier said, was the tight confines.
She said that the Edson and District Leisure Centre is one of the smaller venues, adding they were assigned a small area on the pool deck.
"It is a pretty cramped area to spend five or six hours," Meunier said. "It is almost as if they were sitting on top of each other. There is stuff everywhere: towels, yoga mats, bags. You make space where you can, and by the end of the weekend, you know your teammates better."
The Barrhead Swim Club travelled to Spruce Grove for another swim meet this past weekend. As of our press deadline, the results were not known.