Hemel masters make a splash at top meet

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A GROUP of Hemel Hempstead masters swimmers have returned home from Rimini in Italy after competing in the prestigious FINA World Masters Championships.

The event saw some of the world’s best masters competing in age groups ranging from 25-29 years through to 95-99 years.

Hemel’s Pam Ware put in some solid performances, gaining top-50 finishes in the 50m freestyle, 100m freestyle and 50m butterfly.

Team-mate Adrienne Monger swam in the 200IM and 50m freestyle, achieving 77th place in the 50m freestyle.

Elsewhere, veteran breaststroke swimmer Mike Piggot won his heat in the 50m breaststroke in a time of 39.21 seconds and finished 130th in the 50m freestyle.

Swimming colleague Kevin McKenna, who competed in the same age group as Piggott, narrowly missed out on a top-100 spot in the 200IM, finishing 102nd. He then finished 122nd in the 50m freestyle.

James McFarlane – swimming in his first World Masters competition – clocked personal best times in the 200IM and 50M butterfly, while Dave Pirrie took 20th place in the 200m breastroke, 30th in the 50m breaststroke and 32nd in the 200IM.

Finally, the over 200 years of age relay team ,comprising of Chris Hollick, Ware, Piggot and Pirrie finished a credible 37th in the four-star 50m freestyle relay.

Further afield, Hemel’s Annette Thatcher captured the South African masters 50M breastroke title.