© Times-Herald photo by Matthew Gourlie
Kendal Paulson from the Moose Jaw Kinsmen Flying Fins trains Friday at the Kinsmen Sportsplex.
The Moose Jaw Kinsmen Flying Fins went to Saskatoon for the 36th annual Saskatoon Goldfins Invitational to see where they stood at this early point in the swim season.
It’s safe to say the dozen local swimmers came back from Saskatoon with some raised expectations for the upcoming season.
Fins swimmers set four new provincial ‘AA’ times, 12 new provincial ‘A’ times and 65 personal best swims over four strong days in the pool.
“It was outstanding,” said Flying Fins head coach Monty Smith. “Usually the first swim of the year is where I get my boundary and set my template ... It’s like a benchmark and we can train from there.
“The performance level, the technique and the times were all great.”
Richard Tipper, 15, had a great meet. He posted four ‘AA’ qualifying times and three more ‘A’ times. Those times are a standard that qualifies swimmers for bigger meets. Those standards also change which only added to the achievement so early in the season.
“After the Olympics happen they take a percentage of all of the swims and they basically change all of the times,” explained Smith. “So now they are all faster.
“To pull off a ‘AA’ time at the beginning of the year is awesome.”
Tipper also set personal bests in seven of his eight swims, including shaving an impressive 3.13 seconds off of his 50-metre freestyle swim for a time of 27.61 seconds.
Kendal Paulson earned five ‘A’ times out of her six swims and earned four personal bests. Ironically, Smith was just as excited about her non-personal best time given that her faster time was set in a long course pool.
“It’s nice to see where they are for the start of the season. I can’t wait to see what they can do from this,” said Smith.
Lauran Armbruster swam to four ‘AA’ times and four more ‘A’ times, while also setting four personal bests.
Joey Derksen swam to seven ‘A’ times and all eight of his swims were personal bests.
Alex Folk shaved some huge time off of his swims and had six personal bests two ‘A’ swims.
Madison Jordison swam an ‘A’ time and set six personal bests. Marlee Barber, Quinn Barber and Robyn Read each set five new personal bests.
Taiha Jordison set three personal bests and Cadence Johns and William Tipper set new marks in each swim.
The Fins will be co-hosting the Fall Freeze Out with the Regina Marlins at the Lawson Aquatic Centre from Nov. 17-18.