HPK swim to success

The Howick Pakuranga Swim Club team (Supplied)

Howick Pakuranga Swim Club retained their 3rd place club ranking last week at the Swimming New Zealand Age Group Championships held at Wellington Regional Aquatic Centre from 21st -25th March.

A team of 24 swimmers and 5 staff from the South East Auckland club travelled to Wellington for the 5 day competition that saw the best swimmers aged between 12 to 18 years of age battle it out to be crowned New Zealand Age Group champions.

The mixed team of boys and girls stayed in the Bay Plaza Hotel where the staff helped to create an environment conducive to some great performances. With days starting at 6am and finishing as late as 10pm it was vital to have an opportunity to rest during the breaks.

There were 75 finals from which the team produced a total of 31 medals, eclipsing last year’s result of 25. “It was a hard fought competition this year and it came down to the last day. We are grateful to the schools for releasing the swimmers to compete and display their skills.” Paul Dowey, Head Coach of the Howick-Pakuranga Swim Club. “We certainly can see some young talent beginning to blossom.”

The stand out performances from the team included 2 athletes in particular, both from Pakuranga College, collecting more than their fair share of medals.

Ryan Oliver collected 7 medals with, 2 gold, 2 silver, and 3 bronze. Tyron Henry was declared champion in no less than 5 events picking up 5 gold and 1 silver. Both athletes had major roles in the relay team.

There were great medals from other athletes including Daniel Koenigsperger, Hannah Ferguson, Phoebe Harris, Thomas Hughson, Andrew Rattray, Adrian Chong and Holly Ancliffe. There were other top 10 placings for finalists Brooke Hill, Rocky Mulinuu, Noah Villisoni-Heather, Josh Kao, James Slessor, Laura Wesseling, Jasmine Anderson, Andre Yiu, and Karl Zhu.

Paul was keen to publicly thank others: “Thanks to Honda for supporting the team with vehicles to get the athletes to the pool. Sheldon Kemp and Rachel Palmer the coaches on deck, to Horst Miehe for his support and of course the team manager Susan Yates who faultlessly kept everyone on track.”