Smashing efforts at Woogaroo meet
Multi-talented swimmer Kelsey Wall obliterated her personal best time for the 100m butterfly to qualify for the elite McDonald's Queensland Championships.
It was the last chance for racers to post times in competition to qualify for the prestigious state meet.
Wall did not squander the opportunity as she carved an unbelievable eight seconds off her previous mark to book her place on the blocks at Chandler.
Woogaroo coach Noel Donnelly said every swimming carnival provided a rare performance and Wall took this mantle on Saturday.
"There is always a diamond in the rough," he said.
"Kelsey qualified from nowhere. It was a big improvement and a testament to her talent. She is an all-rounder - a natural swimmer, a good student and she is still involved in team sports as well."
Wall will be among 13 Woogaroo athletes to enter the fiercely competitive state titles in December.
Jayden Allum, Gabby Stokes, Hamid Bah, Lua Taione, Liam Donnelly, Poppy Wilson, Kaiden Quinn, Jack Simmonds, Mercedes Siganto, Alex Peacock, Zac Presneill, and Hugo Newham round out a strong squad blessed with plenty of ability.
Seven of the club's state contingent train under Donnelly, with the remainder honing their strokes under the watchful eye of Stephen Ballhouse. In an indication of their collective potential, Donnelly anticipates that at least 25 per cent will qualify and progress to nationals at Perth in April.
He said the Queensland Champs represented the equivalent of a mid-season grand final for the swimmers who would turn their attention to school sport, junior and senior metros and nationals in the second half.
"As a club to have 12 qualify at that level is very good," he said.
"The qualifying times are decent. Having qualified, you can pretty much say that you're in the top 40 swimmers in the state. It is the culmination of their work for the year."
Donnelly said though numbers ended up a little down on last year's inaugural meet, the last chance state qualifier once again proved a hit with the region's superfish.
"It was better for the participants because it was not quite as long," he said.
"People are looking for a half-day experience and preferably three hours rather than four. The morning session was finished by 11.15am and the seniors were done by 5pm."
Donnelly said the event also served as a successful fundraiser, with all of the proceeds to go back to the children via the club's formal trophy presentation night at season's end.
"All of the money always goes back to the club and back into the kids," he said.
As with all amateur sporting events, Saturday's carnival could not have occurred without the army of volunteers who ensured it was enjoyable for all in attendance.
Donnelly paid tribute to everyone who devoted countless hours in the lead-up and on the day.
Such was the level of their commitment that the post-carnival clean-up was over in no time.
"Three quarters of an hour after we had finished, the complex was back to being a public pool," he said.
"It was quite amazing the number of hands that we had on deck. They did an absolutely mighty job."