Hertfordshire County Championships 2015

Report : written by Mary Wright Head Coach

Results on Herts ASA Website can be found here

HoddSC Full set of results can be found here

Sessions 2 to 6 of the County Championships were due to take place on the weekend of the 14th and 15th March, at the Venue, Borehamwood.

Due to technical issues with the pool, which resulted in the water temperature being too cold for the swimming competition, only Session 2 went ahead on the Saturday.  The Coaches felt that the cold water temperature had considerable effects on the swimmers’ performances, particularly the 100 freestyle and 200 breaststroke.

All other sessions went ahead as planned, except that the events missed on the Saturday afternoon and evening had to be fitted into the following weekend’s timetable. This made it a very long and tiring weekend for swimmers and officials, and our swimmers did remarkably well in the circumstances.

Throughout the weekends, our swimmers were a delight to Coach, both in and out of the water, and it was a pleasure to see them all getting the reward for all their hard work through Personal Best Times, Medals and Regional Times. Some of the older swimmers also picked up medals in the Elite Open Finals for the County.

Special mention must be made to the following people:

Bella Parkus, for her first ever appearance at Counties, aged 9. She swam a very nice 200 Backstroke in 3.29.24, just outside her personal best time, and finished 6th in the County. Well done Bella, we look forward to lots of years watching you compete in the future.

Grace Harvey , S7, SM7, SB6  showed her inner strength by competing in the 100 freestyle and 200 Breaststroke, and despite the very cold water, she achieved personal best times in both events. She achieved a Personal Best (PB) time in the 100 freestyle of 1.19.20 and a massive 52 second PB in the 200 Breast (4.04.53). Grace is travelling to Glasgow to take part in the British Para-swimming International Meet at the venue of last year’s Commonwealth Games. The event takes place 26th to 29th March 2015, and I am sure you will all join with me in wishing her “fast swimming” at this  extremely high level event.

Dominic McCarthy(12), Ezme Gladwell(12) and Ryan Brewster(15), all qualified in multiple events for Counties this year, but due to injuries and illnesses arrived at Counties in less than perfect form. Ezme still managed a large PB in her 100 Backstroke (1.20.10) and competed in multiple events only just outside her PB’s despite being unwell. Dominic not only had a knee injury, but topped it off with a cold, but still managed a small PB in his 50 Freestyle (31.96). Ryan has had considerable disruption to his training due to injury over the last few months, but still managed a PB in his 100 free (1.01.18) and 50 Free (28.10)

For these three I wish them a speedy recovery, and next year, who knows what they will achieve!

Rising stars in the 11Year Age Group at Counties this year were Lucy Hinks and Amy Bishop, were rewarded for all their hard work by some enormous PB’s and County Medals. Lucy swam the 50 Backstroke in a new PB (35.87) to claim a Silver medal and a Regional Qualifying Time. She also achieved an 8 second PB in her 100 Backstroke (1.17.40) and this swim gave Lucy her second medal, a Bronze.  She finished 5th in the 200 Backstroke with a massive 16 second PB and in the 200IM Lucy knocked a further eight seconds off her PB (3.02.12).

 Amy swam a one second PB to claim the gold medal in the 50 Freestyle (31.57). She finished 4th in the 100 IM (1.19.04) a 6 second PB and achieved a small PB in her 50 Backstroke (36.89) to claim 5th place. She finished 7th in the 50 Breaststroke (42.23), also a PB. She also took 3 seconds off her 100 Freestyle (1.10.55) and 6 seconds off her 200 Freestyle (2.38.91).   Amy and Lucy should be very proud of their performances.

Marco Tontodonati also competed in the 11 year old age group, where he swam multiple events.  He came 7th in the 50 Backstroke (37.62), 8th in 200 Free with a 7 second PB and 8th in 100 IM (1.23.77), a 2 second PB.  He also swam an excellent 26 second PB in the 400 Freestyle (5.33.71) an 8 second PB in the 200 IM (3.00.25) and a 3 second PB in the 200 Backstroke (2.53.55). He also swam a good 50 Breaststroke (45.82), and achieved small PB’s in the 50 Free (33.03) and 200 Breaststroke (3.29.98). Even though the weekends were so long the PB’s kept coming. Well done Marco !

Marco Tontodonati - 8th place BAGCATS (11yrs)

Rhys Dolan  (12) who is also an active member of  Hoddesdon Triathlon Club, participated in his favoured Backstroke events. He achieved a 3 second PB in the 100 Backstroke (1.20.26), and also achieved a PB in the 200 Backstroke (2.55.54). His 50 Backstroke also showed improvement over his entry time (37.24).

Competing in the 12 year old Girls age group were Ellie Godsave, Lily Merrett and Libby Dunford.  

Ellie has showed a welcome return to form recently and despite the cold water, smashed out a 2 second PB in the 100 Freestyle (1.06.31),

missing her  Regional time by only a fraction of a second., and finishing 4th in her Age Group. She also finished 4th in the 100IM with a 2 second PB time (1.18.34), 5th in the 50 Freestyle (31.32) and achieved PB’s in the 50 Butterfly (35.07) and an 8 second PB in the 200 Freestyle (2.28.00). Keep up the good work Ellie, it is paying off!

Lily has shown a spectacular improvement over the last year. Her results at Counties this year have reflected this and Lily should be very proud of her achievements. She achieved a further 2 Regional times during Counties in the 200 Freestyle (2.25.15) and 50 Freestyle (30.75) to give her a total of 9 Regional times for the East Region Championships in May 2015.  She won Gold in the 50 Backstroke with a 1 second PB (33.30), 5 silver medals in the 100 butterfly (1.14.34), 50 Fly (32.57), 50 Free (30.75), 200IM (2.41.48) and 100IM (1.16.82) and a Bronze in the 100 Backstroke (1.13.28). She also came 4th in the 200 backstroke (2.38.22), 7th in the 100 Freestyle (1.07.73) and 8th in the 200 Freestyle as well as competing in the 50 Breaststroke (42.88). Nearly every swim resulted in a Personal Best time.

Libby also had an excellent County Championships.  Of the Events swum at counties, Libby also has 9 Regional times to take forward to the East Region Championships. Of the 11 events swum at counties, Libby achieved 7 gold medals, 2 silver medals and a 5th place in the 100 Breaststroke (1.28.85) and 6th in the 200 Breaststroke (3.13.94) . Gold Medals were 100 Freestyle (1.05.38), 100 Backstroke (1.11.64) 50 Butterfly (32.27) 50 Freestyle (29.13) 200 Freestyle (2.19.92), 200 IM (2.39.42) and 100 IM (1.14.45). Silver medals were for the 50 Backstroke (33.70) and 200 Backstroke (2.34.01).

Libby Dunford 1st and Lily Merrett 3rd place BAGCATS (12yrs)

Ralph Davies (13) and Matteo Tontodonati (13) both competed in the 13 year old age group. 

Matteo has also made enormous progress this year, and after adding a further 3 Regional qualifying times at Counties to the two he has already achieved is looking good for the East Region Championships. He is now very close on a number other times, but if they don’t happen this year, next year they will. Matteo won a Bronze in the 50 Backstroke (32.01) and came 4th in the 200 Butterfly (2.49.14), 5th in the 100 IM (1.11.75), 100 backstroke (1.09.33)and 200 Backstroke (2.31.51) 6th in the 200IM(2.34.34) 200 Freestyle (2.15.17) 50 Freestyle (28.42) and 100 Butterfly (1.12.88). Matteo also came 7th in the 200 Breaststroke (3.03.42), a 5 second PB, and 8th in the 400 Free with a 16 second PB (4.50.21). He also achieved PB’s in the 100 Freestyle (1.03.51),50 Breaststroke (39.01) and 50 fly (32.18) and was on his PB in the 100 Breaststroke (1.26.02)

Ralph Davies swam in no fewer than 15 events in the County Championships this year. He had some fast swimmers in his age group to contend with, but  swam especially well on the second weekend where he achieved a Regional time in the 50 Backstroke  and 5th place (33.02) He came 6th in the 400IM with a 16 second PB (5.41.92) and seventh in the100 Butterfly (1.15.06) , 50 Breaststroke (38.76) and the 100 freestyle (1.02.30) where he came very close to his Regional Time. He was 8th in the 200 Breaststroke (3.07.01). He recorded Personal Best times in almost every event , which shows his incredible stamina, as the second weekend was very long. He swam notable PBs in the 100 IM (1.13.50), 100 Backstroke (1.12.33) 200 Backstroke (2.38.56) and an 8 second PB in the 400 Freestyle (4.58.20). New PB’s were also swum by Ralph in the 200IM (2.44.04), 100 Breaststroke (1.27.57), 200 Freestyle (2.21.38) and50 Freestyle (28.68). He recorded a time of 33.17 in the 50 Fly.

Kayleigh Perry and Jessica Callaghan competed in the 13 years Age Group.

Kay showed herself to be back on form and showing great promise for the future. She was able to add another Regional time to the 100 Backstroke she already has with a great swim in the 50 Backstroke (34.36) and 6th place in her Age group. She came 7th in the 100 Backstroke (1.14.00) and 200 Backstroke (2.40.16) where she was only 1 second off her Regional Time.  She was also within a second or two of her Regional Times for the 200IM (2.44.91), 50 Free (31.26) and 200 Freestyle (2.24.91). Kay also achieved PB’s in the 100 Freestyle (1.07.53) and 100 IM (1.17.02).

Jessica achieved Personal Best times in all her races, finishing 11th in the 50 Backstroke (35.04). She recorded a 2 second PB in the 100 Backstroke (1.16.35) and PB’s in the 50 Free (31.16), 100 IM (1.19.50) and 100 Freestyle (1.09.04). We look forward to seeing you in more events next year. Well done Jess.

 The 15 year old age group was represented by Carly Bays and Amy Godsave .

Carly  achieved a Bronze Medal iand a PB n the 200 IM (2.30.92), 4th in the 100 Butterfly  (1.08.21), and in the 50 Butterfly (31.46)  and was 7th in the 100 Freestyle (1.02.74). Carly also made the Open final of the 100 Butterfly where she swam a time of 1.08.68 to finish 8th.

Amy achieved Gold medals in the 100 freestyle (58.05), 100 Butterfly (1.05.44), 200 Freestyle (2.09.89), 50 Butterfly (29.36) and 50 Freestyle (26.95) in her age group, and also won the Open 100 Freestyle Final (58.01) and 50 Freestyle Final (26.71) gained a Bronze in the Open 100 Butterfly final (1.05.18) and came 4th in the 50 Butterfly final (29.58). Amy is preparing for the British Championships which are being held at the London Aquatics Centre in April, and I am sure you will all want to wish her “fast swimming” at this exciting event.

Amy Godsave

Georgie Pryor(16) Becky Freestone (16) and Christie Bays (19) all participated in the Senior events, but for various reasons were limited in the races they undertook.

Becky who had been on a National Netball weekend for the first weekend, popped in to do the 50 Breaststroke where she came 8th with a time of 38.29.

Christie despite her battle with health issues achieved a PB and Silver in the 100 Butterfly (1.08.05). She also won silver in the 50 Butterfly (31.26) and in the 50 Breaststroke (35.92), a second inside her entry time. A further Silver came in the 100 Breaststroke (1.18.17) where Christie made the final but was unable to compete.

Georgie, who was with her dual Club, London Aquatics Centre, in Edinburgh on the first weekend of Counties won gold in both the 50 Butterfly in her Age Group (28.52) and in the Open Final (28.05). She also achieved gold in the 200 Freestyle (2.07.60) and the 50 Backstroke Age Group (29.92) and Open final (30.23).

Georgie Pryor

Ben Hunt (15) achieved his first ever Regional time in the 50 Backstroke (30.52). He was less than a second off his Regional Time in the 100 Backstroke (1.06.09) and recorded PB’s in the 50 Fly (31.45), 200 Freestyle (2.14.53) and 50 Free (27.54).

Harry Williams (16), James Narengian (17) and Chris Smith (19) all participated in the Championships. Harry competed in the 50 Freestyle (27.09), 200 Freestyle (2.12.31) and his favoured 100 Freestyle (58.78)  where he achieved a PB.

It was very nice to see James competing for us again, having returned to participate in counties from the Royal Wolverhampton School where he boards and trains. James achieved many PB’s over the two weekends, coming 1st in his age group in the 400 Freestyle (4.32.48) and 100 Fly (1.04.22), 2nd in the 200 Freestyle (2.04.15) and 200 IM (2.23.00), 3rd in the 100 Breastsrtoke (1.12.23) and 4th in the 50 Breaststroke (32.90).We look forward to seeing him again soon.

Chris was unable to participate fully in the first weekend of counties due to illness, but managed a 2 second PB in the 200 Breaststroke (2.29.33)  to finish first in his Age Group. He also competed in the 50 Breaststroke where he finished 1st in his Age Group (31.23) and 2nd in the Open Final with a PB time of 30.96. In the 100 Breaststroke, Chris also finished 1st in his Age Group (1.08.78) and 2nd in the Open Final (1.07.94). He finished 4th in his Age Group with a 2 second PB in the 100 Butterfly (1.02.10) and 7th in the Open Final (1.02.35).

Mary Wright Head Coach said "We want to say a big well done to all the swimmers who took part in this year’s County Championships, keep working hard, because next year’s Championships start in January 2016 and will be Age as at 31st December 2016, it won’t be long before qualification for these will start!"

Janet Warrington said “We are very pleased with everyone's achievements this year, conditions were not the best, yet our swimmers continued to get personal best times and provide us with excellent performances.  We have six swimmers who will receive trophies tonight at the Presentation Evening (Wednesday 25th March and we wish them all the very best: Georgina Pryor, Amy Godsave, Chris Smith, Libby Dunford, Lily Merrett and Marco Tonotdonati.



Posted on 25th March

Herts Major League Gala Round 3

Senior Gala Season ends with Fantastic Finale


Hoddesdon Team

The third and final round of Herts Major League proved to be an exciting and exhilarating finish to the Senior Gala season, with Swimmers, Parents and Coaches participating in the Club’s success.

Mary Wright, Head Coach, said "I was so proud of Hoddesdon last night – Parental support was amazing, many thanks to all of you for your support which helped to make the evening so special – and helped me round my “lap of honour” of the baby pool on my knee scooter!"

"Thank you parents for all your support throughout the season, giving up your Saturday nights to Judge, Timekeep and Support the Team is very much appreciated, and helps to make Hoddesdon the Special Club that it is."

"It was also amazing to see so many Coaches on poolside last night. Again, this is a fantastic boost for the swimmers, and shows the swimmers how much we, as coaches, care about their performances. I have been so amazed at the way the coaches have all rallied round following my accident, and I am so grateful to them for all their help over the last month or so."

"From the youngest swimmer to the eldest swimmer, Hoddesdon showed how Team effort can pay enormous dividends. In a Team event, it is not about individual PB’s but about digging deep for the team and finishing in the best position possible.   Although we had lots of 1st, 2nd and 3rd places, in fact far more first places than any other team in the Gala, the hard fought 4th and 5th places were equally as important as they helped to boost our points total, and helped us get so close to Costa towards the end of the Gala. The Under 12 Boys Team of Charlie Cole, Marco Tontodonati, Elias Baluch and Dougie Grayling who was on his first outing in Herts Major League, Division 1, and achieved personal best times, and fought hard in the U12 relays to maintain their 5th position, which helped us get 2 points closer to Costa."

"Those who did their best for the team should be very proud of what was achieved on Saturday night. Our superb performance allowed us to get within a couple of points of Costa, who have been the runaway winners in the last two rounds, and to finish second, above Hemel Hempstead, in the League."

Individual First Places went to Amy Godsave in the Open 100 Freestyle (58.81), U16 100 Freestyle (59.21), and U16 Back (1.07.13); to Georgie Pryor Open 100 Backstroke (1.04.60) and Open 100 Butterfly (1.02.97); to Christopher Smith Open 100 Breaststroke (1.09.19); David Kelleway Open 100 Backstroke (58.28) and 100 Butterfly (57.39); Carly Bays U16 100 Breaststroke (1.21.30); Lily Merrett, U12 Freestyle (30.75) and U12 50 Butterfly (32.79); Charlie Cole U12 50 Butterfly (36.68); Lucy Hinks U12 50 Backstroke (35.87)

Relay first places went to the Open Girls Team of Becky Freestone, Christie Bays, Georgie Pryor and Amy Godsave for both the Medley Relay (1.23.79) and Freestyle relay(1.13.97); the U16 Girls Freestyle Team of Amy Godsave, Carly Bays, Fran Patasin and Libby Dunford (2.16.20) and the wonderful and exciting squadron consisting of Lily Merrett, Libby Dunford, Amy Godsave, Georgie Pryor, Marco Tontodonati, Matteo Tontodonati, Ryan Brewster and David Kelleway (3.46.85)

Second places were achieved by Carly Bays U16 Girls Butterfly (1.07.79) Christie Bays Open 100 Breaststroke (1.17.52),  the Under 12 Freestyle relay team of Lily Merrett, Lucy Hinks, Ellis Burroughs and Amy Bishop, (1.32.87) and the Under 14 Girls Freestyle Relay team of  Kay Perry, Ellie Godsave, Jess Callaghan and Libby Dunford.

Third places were achieved by Marco Tontodonati, U12 50 Backstroke (37.59), Libby Dunford, U14 100 Butterfly (1.12.68) and U14100 Freestyle (1.04.75) , Ralph Davies U14 100 Freestyle (1.03.87), Kay Perry U14 100  Backstroke (1.14.81) and Matteo Tontodonati U14 100 Backstroke (1.09.71) and the Open Men’s  medley relay Team of  Chris Price, Chris Smith, David Kelleway and Harry Williams (1.55.79), and the U14 Girls medley Team of  Kay Perry, Ellie Godsave, Ezme Gladwell and Jess Callaghan (2.23.34)

Individual Personal Bests were swum by Harry Williams Open Men’s 100 Freestyle (58.84), Carly Bays U16 100 Butterfly (1.07. 79), Amy Godsave U16100 Backstroke (1.07.13), Libby Dunford U14 100 Butterfly (1.12.68) and 100 Freestyle (1.04.75), Ellie Godsave U14 100 Breaststroke (1.28.97), Charlie Cole U12 50 Fly (36.68) and 50 Free (34.14), Marco Tontodonati U12 50 Breaststroke (44.73)Lily Merrett U12 50 Free (30.75). there were a further 25 Personal Best Times recorded in the Relays.

"Well done Team Hoddesdon!  Here’s looking forward to the Counties!"

Full set of results can be found here.





Posted on 11th March

South Herts Trophy Gala

HODDESDON swimming club’s young swimmers travelled to Potters Bar on Saturday 14th February 2015 to compete in the South Herts Trophy Gala against three other teams: Hertford, Potters Bar Blue and Potters Bar Jade.

The swimmers achieved 83 personal best times, eight 1st, five 2nd and twenty-two 3rd places.  Andrew Woodhouse Coach said “this is an important gala for our younger swimmers, it gives them the opportunity to practice their race skills and it also gives us coaches the opportunity to observe them competing with a view of selection of our team for the Herts Peanuts League later in the summer.”

Individual 1st places were achieved by Bella Parkus in the girls u11 25m freestyle (18.94) and the u11 25m butterfly (21.40) both times were personal best times for Bella.  Molly Cobbold in the girls 9 years 25m butterfly (20.10); and Amy Bishop won the u13 50m backstroke in a personal best time of 36.90 seconds. 

Charlie Cole won the u12 50m freestyle (35.46) and Marco Tontodonati won the u13 50m backstroke (37.53).

Two relay teams won their races the girls u11 4 x 25m Medley Relay made up of Bethany Dinmore, Isobel Short, Molly Cobbold and Bella Parkus (1:31.87) and the girls 9 years old 4 x 25m Medley Relay Meisha Trend-Evans, Isobel Short, Molly Cobbold and Molly Hagan.

Manuela Teti Coach said “It was a very enjoyable night and it was nice to see so many youngsters having a go, sometimes for the very first time, at racing. Sorrel was a little bit nervous, especially when she found out that she had to swim two lengths, but she managed very well. Tom and Sid were on fire! and the group Molly Cobbold, Bella, Bethany, Meisha were very excited and happy.”

Final places:

Potters Bar Blue - 1st 66 points; Hertford - 2nd - 122 points; Hoddesdon - 3rd - 142 points; Potters Bar Jade - 4th - 175 points


Full results can be found here

Posted on 16th February

Herts Majors Round 2 2015

HODDESDON swimming club travelled the relatively short distance to Stevenage on Saturday 7th February to take part in the 2nd Round of the Herts Major League Gala’s.

Sixteen 1st places, ten 2nd places and five 3rd places saw the Team finish overall in 2nd place behind Hemel Hempstead.

Individual 1st places were achieved by Lucy Hinks in the Girls u12 50m backstroke (35.87pb); Marco Tontodonati Boys u12 50m backstroke (36.76pb); and Carly Bays in the Girls u16 100m butterfly (1:08.83) just 0.5 off her personal best time.

Lucy Charles won two individual races in the evening; the Girls Open 100m backstroke in a time of 1:06.50 and the 100m butterfly in a time of 1:03.53.  Libby Dunford swimming up in the Girls u14 100m butterfly swam a personal best time of 1:14.39 and Christie Bays won the Girls Open 100m breaststroke (1.16.90).

Chris Smith won his favoured race the 100m breaststroke in a time close to his personal best 1:07.84.

Lily Merrett won two individual races the Girls u12 50m butterfly (32.09) and the 50m freestyle (31.02) both personal best times. 

Amy Godsave arrived at the gala during the later stages having travelled from an Open Meet in Norwich where she qualified for the 50m freestyle in the British Championships which will be held at the London Aquatics Centre 14-18th April.  She was still buzzing from this when she jumped in the pool to race the Girls u16 backstroke and won the race with ease in a personal best time of 1:07.17.

Relay Teams who won their races were the Girls u14 4 x 50m freestyle and medley team mad up of Kayleigh Perry, Ellie Godsave, Jessica Callaghan and Libby Dunford winning both races; the Girls Open 4 x 50m freestyle team Amy Godsave, Christie Bays, Becky Freestone and Lucy Charles; the Girls u12 medley relay team Lucy Hinks, Amy Bishop, Lily Merrett and Ellis Burrough; and the Mixed Squadron Relay Lily Merrett, Marco Tontodonati, Libby Dunford, Matteo Tontodonati, Amy Godsave, Ben Hunt, Lucy Charles and Sam Dallimore.

Swimmers of the gala were awarded to Lucy Hinks and Marco Tontodonati.  Head Coach Janet Warrington said “Tonight was great, I am so pleased with the team, we had to make a few changes at the last minute but everyone just gave it their all and didn’t complain.  I am very proud of them and very pleased with the results.”


Final places:

1st            Hemel Hempstead  130

2nd           Hoddesdon            140

3rd           Potters Bar              143

4th           Harpenden              182

5th           Hatfield                  222

6th           Stevenage               239


Full Set of Results can be found here.

Posted on 13th February

Junior stars of the future


Lily Merrett and Libby Dunford

Sunday 8th February 2015 saw Hoddesdin SC's Libby Dunford (11yrs ) and Lily Merrett (11yrs) took part in the 2nd Junior Inter-counties competition at Luton Inspire 50m pool. The competition involved the best teams from Bedfordshire, Cambridgeshire, Essex, Hertfordshire, Leicestershire, Lincolnshire and Suffolk.              

Both girls were involved in the girls (11yrs) 4 x 50m medley relay where the Hertfordshire Team led from the very start with great swims from Jessica Patrick (City of St. Albans) and Jessica Bond (Hatfield) starting for the team, Lily then pushed ahead with the butterfly leg swimming a time of 32.50 seconds and Libby brought the team home with the  freestyle leg swimming an impressive 29.57 seconds, securing a clear first place.

Libby came first in her individual 50m freestyle (29.84), and also in her individual 50m backstroke (34.67).   Lily also came first in her individual 50m butterfly leading all the way to the finish in a time of 32.19 seconds.

Libby also delivered fantastic swims in the mixed 4 x 50m freestyle relay, where the team finished overall 2nd and then in the final race of the day; the mixed squadron 8 x 50m relay finishing in overall 3rd place.

Libby said “It was a great experience and there was a good team spirit” and Lily said “It was really fun; I am looking forward to next year!”

Anna Baker, Lily’s mum said “The swimmers were selected from across the East Region so there was a very high standard of swimming on the day.  The girls did amazing to bring home so many first places on such a tough day of swimming especially as this was their third competition in three days!”

Overall it was a close run competition with Hertfordshire managing to just make it to 2nd place behind a strong Essex team.

1.      Essex 307.5

2.      Hertfordshire 260.5

3.      Lincolnshire 260

4.      Leicestershire 257

5.      Suffolk 213.5

6.      Bedfordshire 177.5

Posted on 11th February

Herts Major League Round 1 - Jan 2015

Great Team Effort in the 1st Round of the Herts Major League


Well done to all who took part in the Herts Major League gala last night. There were 11 first places, 11 second places and 7 third places, with some excellent swims, despite a number of our swimmers being unwell – some of whom still raced!

Individual Personal Best times were achieved by Ben Hunt, Open 100m Freestyle (1.00.53), Lucy Hinks, 50m Backstroke (36.94), Marco Tontodonati 50m Backstroke (38.26), Matteo Tontodonati, 100m Breaststroke (1.25.31), Chris Price 100m Backstroke (1.09.49), Libby Dunford 100m Butterfly (1.15.37), Jess Callaghan 100m Freestyle (1.08.83) and Lily Merrett 50m Freestyle (31.47). There were also 20 Relay personal best times swum during the gala.

On the Boys side of the Team there was much for the coaching team to be proud of. Ben Hunt, recovering from dental surgery, was determined to swim and even managed a couple of PB’s and a third place in the Under 16 100m Backstroke.

Ralph Davies was also unwell, but when Ben was too unwell to participate he stepped in. He also managed a 3rd place in the U14 Freestyle. Matteo Tontodonati was very supportive of his Team Mates and also stepped in where required. None of them complained once and showed such excellent team spirit they were awarded swimmer of the gala – jointly.

None of the boys’ teams were without issues. With several of the members of the Under 12 boys’ team missing, Oguljohn Er and Anthony Rollo stepped in and did brilliantly for their first swim in the Herts Major League. I am sure we will be seeing much more of them in the future.  We wish Dominic all the best for a speedy recovery from his broken fingers!  He was “gutted” at not being able to swim, and wished his Team Mates well for the gala. The U14 boys’ medley team of Matteo, Ralph, Benjamin and Rhys swam well to achieve 3rd in their Medley Relay.

Chris Price, Chris Smith, Ben Hunt and Ryan Brewster all held the Senior Boys’ team together, despite many regular members of the team being absent, and managed to include some pb’s for good measure. They still managed 3rd in the Medley relay. Chris Smith also finished 2nd in the 100m Breaststroke and 3rd in the 100m Butterfly. Well done, a real team effort.

The Girls Teams were in a better place with fewer illnesses and injuries, apart from Libby who is still recovering from a respiratory virus.

The Open Girls were in excellent form, Georgie, Amy, Becky and Christie winning both relays, as well as every individual race – Amy Godsave, 100m Free Open, 100m Free Under 16, Georgie open 100m Butterfly and 100m Backstroke, and Christie Bays 100m Breaststroke.

Carly Bays also had a good evening in the U16 girls, coming second in both the Butterfly and Breaststroke, and Carly, Amy, Libby and Fran coming second in the Medley Relay and first in the Freestyle relay.

Despite her illness, Libby managed 2nd in the 100m Butterfly in the U14 age group, where the team of Ellie Godsave, Kayleigh Perry, Jessica Callaghan and Ezme Gladwell all swam brilliant 31’s to finish second to COSTA. Kayleigh Perry, in action again in the 100m Backstroke, touched home in third with a time of 1.15.32.

The U12 Girls, Ellis Burroughs, Amy Bishop, Lily Merrett and Lucy Hinks swam brilliantly to claim lots of first, second and third places. Lily Merrett won her Freestyle and Butterfly individuals and Lucy came second in the Backstroke and Amy 3rd in the Breaststroke.  They also came second in the Freestyle and Medley Relays. Well done to Ellis for her first time in the Major League.

Head Coach Mary Wright said "The mince pies and chocolates certainly has had an effect with fewer PB’s than usual, underlining the need to get back to serious training before Counties are upon us!"

Head coach Janet Warrington said “It was a very exciting gala and I was particularly pleased with the efforts of the whole team and finishing 2nd was great.  I am now looking forward to Round 2 which is on the Saturday 7th February, 2015."

Full set of results can be found here

pdf report 


Posted on 11th January

Tri Juniors tackle Olympic Velopark Christmas Cracker Duathlon

Hoddesdon’s Junior Triathletes were in action again on Sunday, keen to use their skills learnt from training on the Rye House Kart Track in November, the team headed  to the Olympic Velopark for the  Christmas Cracker Duathlon on Sunday 14th December. (a Duathlon is Running and Cycling)

15 junior members from Hoddesdon Tri Club arrived to a very frosty track. With the day starting very cold and icy a decision was made to delay the start by an hour for safety by the Velopark team.  Undeterred the juniors, ranging in age from 7 to 14, took the extra opportunity to warm up fully and were ready when each of the race waves were called forward.  Distances ranged from 400m run/ 800m cycle/ 200m runs for the 8 and under to 1600m run/ 5km cycle/ 600m run for Tristar 3 and youths.

Epic performances were seen by all the juniors – with several first time racers including Ben Willis age 7, Cormack Clarke, Katie Warburton and Harry Eagle.  Tom Willis, 14, was 3rd in his age category of Tristar3. Smiles were evident as all the juniors crossed the finish line to receive a medal and seasonal santa hat! 

The club is welcoming new members from their first session back on 9th January 2015 when they return to their outdoor training base at Broxbourne Sports Club.  The junior section meets every Friday from 530pm to 630pm.  The membership is open to girls and boys turning 8 years of age in 2015 up to age 16 they would be delighted to welcome you for a first free session.

 To find out more and want to come along contact the club at

Posted on 15th December

Record Breaking Finish to 2014

Hoddesdon Swimming Club have been breaking more records this time at the ASA East Region Winter Championships held on the 6th and 7th December in Luton and at the Disability Nationals held in Manchester on 22nd 23rd November.

Georgie Pryor and Amy Godsave

Swimming for Team East at the Disability National Championships in Manchester Grace Harvey broke her own British Record for the200m Individual Medley SC with a new personal best time of 3:24.96.

Grace Harvey

Team East Relay Team for Classification S14 (learning disability) also broke the British Record for both their relays 4 x 100 Medley Relay and Freestyle Relays.  Team East was made up of sisters Danielle and Charlotte Harlin, Katie Nesbitt and Jessica-Jane Applegate (MBE).

Danielle, Katie, Jessica-Jane and Charlotte

Janet Warrington Head Coach Team East said “It is a privilege and a pleasure to coach Team East.  The Team had some great swims and the British Records were the icing on the cake!”

Grace Harvey (16)  S7, SB6, SM7 swam in eight events: 100m Freestyle; 100m Breaststroke; 50m Freestyle; 200m Individual Medley; 100m Backstroke; 50m Butterfly and 400m Freestyle also swimming in two relays.

Lottie Mills (13) who recently changed classification to S8, SB7, SM8 swam in four events: 100m Freestyle; 100m Breaststroke, 50m Freestyle and 100m Backstroke.

Gemma Bennett (27) S14 who swims jointly with Dunmow Masters and Hoddesdon SC (2nd claim) swam in three events the 100m Breaststroke, 50m Freestyle and the 200m Individual Medal.

Janet Warrington said “All three girls were on form swimming personal best times and they really enjoyed being part of Team East.  I especially was pleased with how Lottie had a very strong and determined attitude following the disappointment of her re-classification.  The future is very bright for all three girls.”

At the ASA East Region Winter SC Championships Georgie Pryor and Amy Godsave smashed no less than five ASA Hertfordshire and ASA East Region Records and Hoddesdon finished in an impressive 4th place in the Senior and the Junior Medals Tables. 


Top Club Seniors












City of Peterborough















Top Club Juniors












City of Peterborough















Click here for the full Medal Table.


Six members of Hoddesdon SC travelled to inspire Luton Sports Village for the Winter Championships: David Kelleway (21); Chris Smith (18); Becky Freestone (16); Georgie Pryor (16); Grace Harvey (16); Carly Bays (15); Amy Godsave (15) and Gemma Bennett (27) who swam under her home club of Dunmow Masters.

BeckyFreestone, Grace Harvey, Chris Smith
and Georgie Pryor

ASA Hertfordshire and ASA East Region Senior Records that were broken by Georgie Pryor were 50m Backstroke winning jointly with Josephine Blades of St Felix School in  a time of 28.84; and the 100m Butterfly winning in a time of 1:00.83 and she broke the ASA Herts Record in the 50m Butterfly winning in a time of 27.32.  Georgie also qualified for the 200m Individual Medal finishing in 2nd place in the final in a new personal best time of 2:20.34; and finished 3rd place the 100 Backstroke where she swam a time of 1:03.42.

ASA East Region Junior Records  broken by Amy Godsave were the 100m Freestyle which she swam in a fantastic time of 56.50 and the 50m Freestyle in a time of 26.18. She also won the gold medal for fastest Junior in the 50m Butterfly with a time of 29.09.

Mary Wright Head Coach said “ We are very proud of Georgie and Amy who have both shown commitment to their training programme, and have been working hard in and out of the pool.  They deserve these achievements and the coaching team are excited to see how they progress this season”

David Kelleway qualified for five events 50m Freestyle (23.72); 200m Freestyle (1:52.60); 50m Butterfly (26.42); 100m Butterfly (55.54) winning the bronze medal and 100m Freestyle (51.06).

Chris Smith swam his 100m breaststroke heats in a time of 1:06.14 finishing 5th in the final in a time of 1:06.20 and finished 12th place in the 200m Breaststroke in a time of 2:31.22. He also swam the 200m Individual Medley in a personal best time of 2:17.95.

Grace Harvey swam a new personal best time of 2:57.16 in the 200m freestyle (600BDP) and a pb time of 58.68 in the 50m breaststroke (467BDP). The former was an amazing 19 second PB and the latter a 3 second PB.

Carly Bays qualified for a number of events but as this meet was her debut back into high level competition she decided to swim in the 50 Backstroke (31.96) 100m Breaststroke (1:24.73) and the 100m Freestyle (1:02.24), the 100m Butterfly (1.08.37) and  200 IM (2.30.99) With some good pb’s Carly showed herself equal to the challenge.

Becky Freestone swam her favourite race 100m Breaststroke in a time of 1:22.53,  the 50 Breast in a time of 37.66 and the 200 IM in  2.38.53. As Becky is just recovering from injury both she and her coaches were happy with these results.

Gemma Bennett swam in four events the 100m Breaststroke (1:24.71 – 867 BDP); 50m Breaststroke (39.47 – 773 BDP); 50m Backstroke (38.44 – 597 BDP); and the 100m Backstroke (1:24.03 – 534 BDP).

Finishing the Year off at the National Arena League 3rd Round Gala on Saturday 13th December at Hatfield Hoddesdon Team finished in a fantastic 4th Place ensuring they will remain in the Premier Division (London) League again next year 2015.

On the night Hoddesdon Team secured thirteen 1st, four 2nd and five 3rd places with 57 personal best times.  Individual 1st Places were taken by Georgie Pryor, David Kelleway, Libby Dunford, Lily Merrett, and Amy Godsave.

Team Manager and Head Coach Mary Wright said “There was an amazing team atmosphere on the pool side, which made this event very special. The whole team did their very best, and the coaching team are very proud of our swimmers and their achievements. A huge thank you to the coaching team, support staff and parents for making Hoddesdon and exceptional club”

Full results of National Arena Swimming League Gala Round 3 – consolation gala can be found here.



Posted on 15th December

Daplyn Trophy 2014



On Saturday 6th December 2014 Hoddesdon SC attended the annual Daplyn Trophy, an event organised by the Herts ASA. The gala is meant to combine a nice evening of competition and fun and every year Bryan Thompson, Herts ASA Swimming Manager, prepares a surprise to delight swimmers, coaches, officials, volunteers and public.

This year we were accompanied by the joy and rhythm of Toque Tambor’s percussions.



Clubs present at the gala were: Berkhamsted, Harpenden, Hertford, Hertsmere Flyers, Hoddesdon, Stevenage, Potters Bar and Watford.

Each team could enter up to two Under 14 teams for boys and girls. The points system included Position Points (based on placements) and Technique Points: an extra 3 points were awarded to each swimmer who managed to perform an underwater undulation/pull of 10 meters, both at the start and turns.

The evening started with the Officials’ and Clubs’ parade: everybody entered the pool deck dancing at the rhythm of the samba. The unusual warm-up setting with disco lights was a pleasant change and it was nice to see the swimmers dancing all around the pool.

Hoddesdon fielded two teams for the girls: Hoddesdon A (Emily Anderson, Amy Bishop, Jessica Callaghan, Libby Dunford and Lily Merrett) and Hoddesdon B (Ellis Burroughs, Mollie Downes, Rebecca Mead, Alexandra Heal, Eden Montague). Hoddesdon A boys’ team included Elias Baluch, Ralph Davies, Dominic McCarthy, Marco Tontodonati, Matteo Tontodonati and Benjamin Williamson).

In the individual events four 1st places were achieved by Libby Dunford (100 IM, 1.14.45), Matteo Tontodonati (50 Back, 34.03), Lily Merrett (50 Fly, 33.47) and Ralph Davies (50 Fly, 32.85). A 3rd place was secured by Jessica Callaghan in the 50 Back (35.91). In total, 13 PBs were achieved both in Individual and Relay events.

Technique points were gained by Lily Merrett (+9 points), Matteo Tontodonati (+9 points), Jessica Callaghan (+6 points), Emily Anderson (+6 points), Benjamin Williamson (+6 points), Libby Dunford (+3 points), Marco Tontodonati (+3 points), Mollie Downes (+3 points) and Ellis Burroughs (+3 points).

Final placements were 4th for the Girls Hoddesdon A, 6th for the Boys Hoddesdon A and 14th for the Girls Hoddesdon B.

Coach Manuela Teti said: “It was a very enjoyable evening of swimming and dancing. It was all about having a good time and supporting the team and both were well achieved on the night. The technique points system added excitement to the races allowing our swimmers to gain more points and go up on the results list. In a few cases the focus on the 10 meters mark didn’t give the desired effect, but it all goes down to learning from experience. Well done to all our swimmers both for their races and mad dancing. Happy Christmas to everybody, have fun, be good and rest, ready for a wonderful 2015!”



Full results can be found here

Posted on 10th December

Alison Portch Memorial Christmas Gala
Sunday saw a team of 30 Hoddesdon swimmers take part in the annual Portch Memorial Christmas Gala at Fanshawe Pool in Ware, competing against Hertford and Ware SC who fielded two teams.
There were thirteen 1st places on the night, many of them achieved in the Open age group.
Special mention must go to the many swimmers who swam up into the older age groups in both individual events and relays.
Emily Anderson and Junior Boys Captain Elias Baluch were awarded swimmers of the gala for their efforts.
A few of our swimmers couldn't make it on the night due to the usual winter bugs that seem to fly around at this time of year. A big thank you to Charlie Cole for stepping in at the last moment to swim and to Ellis, Rebecca, Elias and Scott who took on additional swims. Summa, Daniel.C and Daniel.N we wish you all a speedy recovery!
Lastly I would like to thank our Team Manager Mark Charles for his rousing team talk before and after the gala and to all our parent helpers who contributed to the smooth running of the event.
Full set of results can be found here

Posted on 10th December

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