Harry Oliver notched nine podiums during the All Stars Junior Festival. PHOTOS/SUPPLIED

SWIMMING

ELI HILL
eli.hill@age.co.nz

Up-and-coming Wairarapa swimmer Harry Oliver claimed nine podium finishes, including three gold medals, to top his age group at the All Stars Junior festival held over weekend in Wellington.

The swimmer was part of an eight-strong Masterton Swimming Club contingent who competed in the annual Swimming New Zealand meet held at Wellington Regional Aquatic Centre over Friday, Saturday and Sunday.

Oliver produced a raft of personal bests that catapulted him on to the podium.

Oliver in the 200m freestyle.

The 11-year-old’s gold medals came in the 200m backstroke when he clocked two minutes, 47 seconds, the 200m freestyle in 2.29.13 and the 200m individual medley which he won with a time of 2.51.46 – over nine seconds ahead of the runner-up.

Oliver was second in the 50m breaststroke, 100m IM and 50m butterfly and was third in the 100m butterfly, 50m and 100m freestyle.

Joining him on the podium in the 11-year-olds’ 200m IM was Jack Younger who came third while Mya Anderson, also 11, was third in the girls’ 100m backstroke.

The youngest member of the team, Charlie Grenfell, was the fastest nine-year-old in the 200m backstroke and achieved 10 personal bests.

The club won 11 medals, had 34 top 10 placings and achieved 52 personal bests to finish eighth in the overall standings.

Coach Piers Fuller said the festival had been a highlight of the season for the 12-and-under swimmers.

“We were thrilled with how swimmers performed at this three-day event.

“The excitement of the occasion and good preparation made for some great performances as all of our Masterton swimmers really stepped up.

“I’m proud of our swimmers, who just by getting up on the blocks to race against the best swimmers in the middle of the country, have shown that perseverance pays off.”

At last September’s Wellington Short Course Championships, Oliver won five events – the 100m and 200m backstroke, 50m and 100m freestyle, and 50m butterfly. He also took two silvers in the 100m butterfly and 200m individual medley.

The Wairarapa Swimming Club was represented by Charlie Grenfell, Olivia Murray, Enzo Fuller, Mya Anderson, Harry Oliver, Jack Younger, Jordyn Bowden, Madison Bowden and Japhy Fuller.