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Northland Awards 2016 - 2017

At Swimming Northland’s annual awards last Sunday, top Northland swimmer Ciara Smith picked up armfuls of awards plus some help towards achieving her next goal.

Ciara is off to the Youth Commonwealth Games in the Bahamas later this month, where she will represent New Zealand in 100m and 200m breaststroke – the trip costs just under $6000 and she and her family faced bills of more than $15,000 over the last season for her to attend national and overseas meets.

Her club, Northwave, are sizzling sausages and selling cakes and raffle tickets to help Ciara and her family with the cost of being a national representative.

Ciara was Northland’s Swimmer of the Year for the past season, and picked up trophies for coming the closest to or breaking Northland and national age group records at national meets (she equalled the New Zealand Age Group 16 year girls record in 50m breaststroke at the NZ Age Group Championships in March this year). She also won the Martin Wilson trophy for the swimmer breaking a race record by the greatest percentage margin at the Northland Age Group Championships, and the Richard Dunkerton L.M. Trophy for earning the highest FINA points at the national age groups. Ciara won stroke trophies for all the breaststroke distances, plus 50m, 100m and 200m freestyle, and 200m and 400m individual medley trophies.

Some of her achievements in the past swimming season include: winning the 100m breaststroke at the 2016 Australian State Teams National Championships in Canberra; winning three golds at the Auckland Championships; winning the 100m and 200m breaststroke events at the NZ Zonal meet as a member of the Harlequins team; winning three breaststroke golds at the New Zealand Age Group Championships, three silver medals for breaststroke at the New Zealand Opens in Auckland in April; silver in 100m and 200m breaststroke at the Australian Age Group Championships in Brisbane. She was recently named in the Swimming NZ national development squad and will travel again with the New Zealand team to the Australian State Teams Nationals in Canberra in September.

In just over a week Ciara will head to the Bahamas where she’ll compete against some of the world’s top youth swimmers. Mum Tracy Blaauw says Ciara’s very excited and can hardly sleep, in the lead up to the trip.

Northland’s Official of the Year Shield winner, and Swimming Northland chair, Carlrine Gillespie of Dargaville, also heads overseas this month on swimming related business – to Budapest in Hungary, where she’ll officiate at swimming’s top event, the FINA World Swimming Championships.

Other major award winners for Northland were: Junior Swimmer of the Year: Emilia Finer (Bay of Islands); Coach of the Year: Monica Cooper (Northwave); Administrator of the Year: Beth Finer (Bay of Islands); Emerging Official of the Year: Denis Garner (Bay of Islands); Mick Parr Memorial Trophy for Swimmer Service to Sport: Samantha Turner (Bay of Islands); Champion of Champions Trophy: Annabell Simpson (Northwave); Crawford-Woodman Cup: Bream Bay Swimming Club; O.W. Wright Shield Club Points Trophy: Northwave.

The Lorraine Holmes Trophy for the 12 years and under swimmer who gains the most points in 50m and 100m finals at Northland Age Group Championships went to Matty Douglas (Dargaville) and the Swimming Northland Trophy for the swimmer who earns the highest XLR8 points in an event at NZ Juniors went to Emilia Finer (Bay of Islands).

Stroke Trophies: Ciara Smith (Northwave): women’s 50m, 100m, 200m free; 50m, 100m, 200m breaststroke; 200m and 400m individual medley; Annabell Simpson (Northwave): women’s 50m, 100m, 200m back; 50m, 100m, 200m fly; 400m free; Paul Linton (Bream Bay): men’s 50m, 100m, 200m back, 200m IM; Kieran Swords (Bream Bay): men’s 50m, 100m, 200m fly, 100m IM; Archie White (Bay of Islands): men’s 50m, 100m, 200m breaststroke; Teegan Farr (Northwave): men’s 200m fly (SC & LC), 400m IM; Katelin Milina (Whangarei): women’s 200m SC fly, 100m IM; Conor Willy (Dargaville): men’s 50m free; Tyler Jepsen (Northwave): 400m free.