PROMISING LINE-UP: CYMS St Edmund’s Swimming Club competitors prepare for the relay and individual events at the state titles.
PROMISING LINE-UP: CYMS St Edmund’s Swimming Club competitors prepare for the relay and individual events at the state titles. David Nielsen

St Edmund's coach keen to enhance team's excitement

EXPERIENCE, exposure, enjoyment and expansion are the focus of CYMS St Edmund's club swimmers contesting the state championships starting tomorrow.

A team of five individual and 31 relay swimmers are contesting the annual Queensland titles at Chandler.

However, St Edmund's head coach Steve Critoph is looking for more than personal bests over the next week.

He's keen to build club spirit and future excitement among the swimmers competing at Chandler and at the South Australian championships in January.

"It's mostly about giving people an opportunity to do some travel and experience some new things,'' Critoph said about focusing on two major meets.

Critoph said to keep kids spending a long time in swimming, they need trips to enjoy and to remember.

"If you talk to former athletes - whether they be swimmers, cricketers, basketballers, whatever - they always talk about the trips away that they had,'' the coach said.

"The time that they went here or the time that they went there. Everything is about what they really remember out of their sporting careers and the things they really enjoy out of their sporting careers.

"I make it a huge focus with us that we have a major trip away every year.''

Last year, Critoph took a team to Canberra.

"This year, we're going to the South Australian championships (starting January 20),'' he said.

"Next year we may go somewhere else. But there's always something that people can aim towards and get to.

"You get people to earn a trip to go to nationals for example. But it's only really a small group of people and we want to try and give that exposure and experience to as many people as we can.

"The kids that go to South Australian championships this year might just make nationals next year or the year after.

"It might be the spark that says to them 'hey this is really good. Let's try a little bit harder. Let's work a little bit more. I want to do this'.''

The individual swimmers representing St Edmund's at the Queensland championships are Ryan Smith, Elly Burling, Aiden Tuihalangingie, Josh McIntyre and Britney Summerville.

Club swimmers to have qualified for the South Australian championships are Dylan Smith, Nick Dowsett, Nat Smith, Max Roche, Harrison Rae, Josh McIntyre, Aiden Tuihalangingie and Ryan Smith (boys); and girls competitors Bethany Smith, Britney Summerville, Elly Burling and Jordan Harton.

Families and swimmers have worked hard in recent weeks to assist with team expenses.

They have raised money by running barbecues and selling chocolates.

State title mission

CYMS St Edmunds swimmers focusing on individual events at the state titles starting this weekend at Chandler pool.

  • Elly Burling, 14 (100m freestyle).
  • Joshua McIntyre, 15 (100m backstroke, 100m butterfly).
  • Ryan Smith, 16 (men's open 200m breaststroke, 16yrs 100m breaststroke, 16yrs 200m breaststroke, 16yrs 200m IM).
  • Britney Summerville, 14 (200m backstroke, 100m freestyle, 100m backstroke).
  • Aiden Tuihalangingie, 16 (100m freestyle).