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Tom Fraser-Holmes backs new Swim League in Hunter
Swim League Media Launch
Olympian and Australian Swimming Team Co-Captain Thomas Fraser-Holmes has thrown his support behind a new swimming league which is being launched from the Hunter Region.
Fraser-Holmes is the inaugural Ambassador for Swim League, a new team-based format of racing which will create more opportunities for local swimmers and a gripping contest for spectators.
The first regional series of Swim League will be staged in the Hunter Region and kicks off on Saturday 13 May.
Five teams will contest the 10-week series in 60-minute swimming matches staged each week at Coughlan’s Swim Centre in Warners Bay.
The teams are Newcastle Royalty, Lake Macquarie Wizards, Port Stephens Pirates, Hunter Valley Vipers and Central Coast Heat.
Swim League Founder Adam Beisler, who is head coach of the Novocastrian Swimming Club, said he has created Swim League to boost the opportunities for swimmers who are trying to make it to an elite level.
“Swimmers in regional areas like Newcastle have to work extra hard to compete with those who have much greater resources. A lot of our top swimmers move to Sydney or Queensland or even the US in order to reach the next level,” said Beisler.
“Swim League is about giving swimmers a new platform to show what they can do in the pool and more valuable racing experience. It’s also a lot of fun and will open up more pathways into the sport.”
Beisler says Swim League is also about driving the sport of swimming forward by making it much more entertaining for the spectator.
“Your average swimming carnivals stretches out over a whole day but swimmers might only get to compete for five minutes in total. Swim League matches are fast, energetic and social. It’s great to watch, we encourage all sport-lovers in the region to come and check it out.”
Tickets to each match are $5 and children 12 and under are free.
The five Swim League teams include some of the best junior swimmers in the region as well as experienced swimmers who have already achieved major milestones in the sport.
At the end of the series the four top teams will meet in a Finals match to battle for the title of first Swim League Regional Champions.
Some of the swimmers in the League include:
• Cassandra Van Breugel (Central Coast - Australian Open Finalist, NSW State Medalist, NSW Country Champion) swimming for Central Coast Heat
• Joshua Peoples (Central Coast - Australian Open Qualifier, NSW Country Champion) swimming for Lake Macquarie Wizards
• Emma McDonald (Newcastle - Australian Open Qualifier, NSW Country Champion) swimming for Lake Macquarie Wizards
• Jacob Sansom (Newcastle - Australian Age Medalist, NSW State and Country Champion) swimming for Port Stephens Pirates
• Lauren Hughes (Port Stephens - Australian Age Qualifier) swimming for Hunter Valley Vipers
• Jacob Cerniauskas (Warners Bay - Australian Surf Lifesaving Medalist, NSW State Surf Lifesaving Medalist, NSW Country Medalist) swimming for Port Stephens Pirates
• Phoebe Shearer (Warners Bay - NSW State Qualifier) swimming for Newcastle Royalty
• Rhys Hughes (Toronto - NSW State Qualifier, NSW Country Medalist) swimming for Newcastle Royalty
• Harrison Little (New Lambton - Australian Age Qualifier) swimming for Lake Macquarie Wizards
Media Contact: Adam Beisler 0402 282 536
Round 1 wrap up
In the first round of the Swim League Regional Series, Hunter Valley Vipers beat Central Coast Heat in a fiercely contested dual on Sunday 14 May.
From the first relay, the lead changed several times and this set the tone for the rest of the night. Many wins for the Vipers came from the outside lane seven which made for some close finishes as the middle lanes were forced to push back.
Vipers coach Sam Frame strategically focused on the night's relays and it paid off as Myles Bailey and Matthew Pender led all the way to win the Brace relay. The Viper girl combination of Christine Connell and Lauren Hughes also took top spot to give the Vipers a 41-35 victory.
In the first match of the new team-based Swim League, Newcastle Royalty toppled the Port Stephens Pirates 56 -19. Newcastle were dominate from the first event with recent National Age champion Emily Jones taking first place in all her races while teammate Jack Curran racked up three wins for the team. Port Stephens struggled to make up ground. Coach Michael Abel lamented that the ballot-selected program of events were not a good match for his team and is hopeful for more Butterfly and Medley races in the next round of the league.
Next week the two matches will see Newcastle Royalty line up against Central Coast Heat and Hunter Valley Vipers take on Lake Macquarie Wizards Saturday and Sunday 4.30pm at Coughlan's Swim Centre in Warners Bay.