For a small club, the Fulton Amateur Swim Team (FAST) have been churning up the pools across the North Island this swimming season.
At the New Zealand Junior Festival in February, more than 80 per cent of the competing FAST team came away with personal bests. In March, seven swimmers travelled to Rotorua for the NZ Division II event where Keegan Neate grabbed himself a silver medal in the 200m butterfly, and top ten placings in three other events. That effort secured Keegan with qualification for the next level of competitive swimming, the NZ Age Group Championships.
The season highlight for the FAST crew came at that top event, the National Age Group Championships, held in April at the AUT Millennium Pool in Auckland. Four FAST swimmers made it through the tough qualification standards; Mikaela Hawley (13), Keegan Neate (15), Nathan Hickmott (15) and Libby Murphy (13). Nathan’s efforts on the day gained him entry into finals for the 50m freestyle, 100m freestyle and the 50m backstroke and he came away with a fifth, a sixth and a tenth respectively. The standout performer was Libby (who we’ve profiled in an earlier edition), who set the bar high for the rest of the team, with gold in the 100m butterfly, silver in the 200m individual medley, bronze in the 100m freestyle, 200m freestyle and individual medley and top ten placings in all other events. They say ‘good things come in small packages’ and this small club is showing it to be true.