After a three year hiatus caused by the Covid-19 pandemic, we are delighted that the Scottish National Age Group Swimming Championships are back! More than 1,000 athletes representing 92 clubs from across the UK will travel to the Tollcross International Swimming Center in Glasgow, for five days of great competition, from April 13-17.
A number of athletes who raced last week in Sheffield return to action this week in Tollcross including Katie Shanahan, Drew McKenzie (Glasgow City Swim Team), Anna Morgan, Natasha Simson (Warrender Baths Club ), Evan Davidson, Katherine Bailey (Perth City), Keira Stericker (South Ayrshire) and Holly McGill (Heart of Midlothian). For the majority, however, SNAGS may provide the first long-course racing opportunity in a few years.
For many, age groups are usually the event that provides the first opportunity to win that first national championship medal, make a final or score points for their club in the Top Team competition (Warrender Baths Club d’ Edinburgh won the Top Club title in April 2019). Athletes can also secure ranking positions for the UK Summer Nationals as well as the Scottish Summer Meet held in July, if they do well enough.
Milngavie & Bearsden have a team of around 20 athletes competing, and for a number of them this year will be their first SNAGS experience. During a training session the day before the competition, there was more an air of excitement than nervousness. Joanna, 13, said:
“I’m really looking forward to the experience and my 100m freestyle, because I think I can do well in that.” Her teammate, Abi (14), was also excited to run, she said,
“I’m looking forward to the atmosphere. I’m also confident in my 200m backstroke, so I’m looking forward to this event.
Chloe (12) said: “I think it will be a great experience, and I can’t wait to check out the event, as it hasn’t been held for a few years and I’ve never been to SNAGS before. . .”
With the UK Championships only ending on Sunday, the girls also spoke about some of the inspiring performances they watched last week. Emily (13) had a keen eye on fly swimmers, she said,
“I really want to improve, so I was watching the butterfly finals closely to see if I could learn anything. I can’t wait to race with new people here.
Rebecca (13) who will represent South Lanarkshire Swimming said:
“I think I’m really looking forward to getting behind the blocks and getting ready for the race. At the British Championships everyone got up so high behind the blocks and looked so confident before their race, hopefully I can do that here too.
The playoffs for the 15, 16 and 17-18 age groups will take place in the morning, with the playoffs for the 11-13 and 14 age groups in the afternoon, with all finals played from 5:15 p.m. Scottish Swimming is once again partnering with Streamscence, with all sessions streamed live and available on the Scottish Swimming YouTube Channel.
Tickets for the event will be on sale at the door only, there is no presale of tickets.
The program of the event is available here and the results will be provided by Swim in Scotland.
Session times are as follows, from Wednesday 13 to Sunday 17 April:
Morning warm-ups: 9:00 a.m.
Afternoon heat: 1:40 p.m.
Finals: 5:15 p.m.
The action can be followed on social media using the hashtag #SNAGS2022
Follow us on twitter: @ScottishSwim
Like us on facebook: Scottish Swimming
Follow us on instagram: @scottishswimming