Largs swimmer Fraser Kelly was among the medal winners as the North Ayrshire team made a ‘flying’ start to their long course season at the first West District meet of 2020.
Fraser started the weekend in the 50m pool at Tollcross in Glasgow claiming a bronze medal in the 400m freestyle in the 17-year-old age group, delighting Head Coach, Jess Wilkie.
“He was very consistent around the walls and working on the breathing which we’ve been concentrating on in training,” she comments. “Next time he swims it I reckon we’ll be looking at going under the 4:20 marker.”
Fraser, pictured below, was a finalist in the 100m fly and free and made personal bests in every one of his races.
“It was good to see him staying under 1 minute with another PB in the fly and taking nearly a second and a half off his free is a massive drop for this distance at this age.”

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Jess says her highlight of the meet was seeing seven North Ayrshire girls qualify for the finals of the 100m fly, including Isla Waller from Largs.
She finished in the top 10 in all her events in the 13-year-old group. “Isla improved on her qualifying time from the heats which is something we’re always aiming for,” says Jess. “She maintained her stroke and rhythm in the 200m and looked a lot better. I’d like to see her attack the first half of the race a little more.
“The first 200m of her 400m free was fantastic. We’ve done a lot of work on catch and feeling the water and it will be great to see her continuing to work on that. The 400m IM looked good over the four strokes but there’s more we can do around head position in the breaststroke and keeping the high hips all the way through.”
Daniel Convery set new records in both his races, taking 9 seconds off his 100m backstroke and more than 15 off the 100m fly.
Andrew Sutherland recorded a small PB in the 100m freestyle and had his best finish in the 400m, coming in 13th place. “It was as a solid time (4:33.1) and we’ve been focussing on trying to improve his speed and consistency around the walls.
Matthew Shanks set PBs of 4.4 and 5.6 seconds in his 100m backstroke and freestyle.
“He had a much better head position and kick rate in the backstroke. It was his first 400m freestyle long course and he kept consistent pace throughout but we’re going to work on how he handles the
walls and his breathing patterns. He stepped up in the 100m free and there’s definitely more to come from him,” says Jess.
The coach was delighted with the results from the younger swimmers: “Our Junior Coach, Alan Dickson, has been doing a great job and it’s fantastic to see the young swimmers coming through the programme and I’m looking forward to working with them in the years ahead.”
“The 8 members of Gold squad had 20 swims between them,” says Alan, “and every one of them was a PB.
“They also made 11 finals, and 6 of them were faster times, which is very impressive when you consider that they’d already set a record to get into the race and an hour later they’re improving