2015 Masters Meet Reports




    We didt it! In their final competition of 2015, Team Luton brought home the Top Non-Midlands club trophy from the Etwall Eagles Masters competition in Derby for the second year running.

    Graham Powell (centre) and Glenda Mayes (right) with the trophy forTop Non-Midlands Masters trophy 2015 from Etwall Eagles meet

    In 2014 Team Luton won the trophy with 63 points ahead of Everton on 50 points. This year it was a more decisive win with the squad of Glenda Mayes, Alastair Gibb, Graham Powell and Colin Mayes amassing a total of 120 points, way ahead of East Leeds and Trafford Metro both on 54 points.

    In the 55 – 59 year age group, Graham  secured 44 points winning four of his races (25m Fly, 25m Back, 50m Back and 100m IM) and finishing second in a further four events (50m Fly, 25m Breast, 25m and 100m F/s). He was delighted to finish off a long day’s racing with a time of 1:06:65 in the 100m Freestyle. That time should ensure Graham ends the year in the top 50 of the British Masters Decathlon when the results are confirmed in January. As he won the individual competition for his age group Graham has also secured free entry into three races in next year’s competition in Derby.

    Colin won all five of his events (50m and 100m Breaststroke and Freestyle plus the 100 Individual Medley) to clock up 30 points. He finished in second place in his 60-64 year age group and so won free entry for two races in 2016.

    After a wobbly start (!), Glenda  collected 23 points for the team having swum to first place in both the 25m and 50m F/s and the 50m Backstroke. A second place in the 100m Freestyle gave Glenda third place in her overall age group competition and one free swim next year.

    Alastair  gained a further 23 points. In the 55-59 year age group his best results were a second place in the 100m Fly and third in both the 100m Back and 100m Breast.

    The winning team


Team Luton Excel At National Masters Championships

The eight members from Team Luton’s Masters squad who travelled up to Sheffield for the National Masters swimming championships brought home three silver and five bronze medals, whilst breaking one East Region and six County records. All of the squad set personal best times for the year with their strength in depth and versatility being reflected in a total of 26 top ten finishes.


2015 National Masters – Colin Mayes and Graham Powell


Competing for the final year in the 55 – 59 year age group, Graham Powell entered the meet with little expectation of winning any medals. However Powell posted his fastest times this year in all six of his events. His efforts were rewarded with silver and bronze medals in the 50 and 100 metres Backstroke. A further silver medal came in the 100 metres butterfly but Powell just missed out on a medal over 50 metres, finishing in fourth place in a time of 30.96 seconds. This was just two hundredths of a second slower than his own Beds county record set back in 2011.

In the same age group, Alastair Gibb also swam his fastest Masters times this year to be placed in the top ten in all five of his events. His best result came in the 400m Individual Medley, finishing fourth in a time of 5:56.73. Beating the East Region and Beds county records that he had set back in April by a further 2.3 seconds, Gibb has this year reduced the county record for his age group by over 50 seconds.

Having moved up to the 60 – 64 year age group, Colin Mayes was also in County record-breaking form in all five of his events. Three of those came as Mayes finished in third place in the 100m Individual Medley and both the 50 and 100 metres Breaststroke. With a 6.5 second improvement on his own record over the 200m Breaststroke, Mayes was rewarded with a silver medal. A fifth County record came in the 200m Freestyle.

Malcom Barton – Bronze Medalist


Malcolm Barton posted his own personal best times of the year in all three of the 60 – 64 year Breaststroke events. He finished seventh in the 50m, fifth in the 100m but topped it off with a bronze over the 200m, to add to the bronze medal won earlier in the year at the long course (50m pool) GB Masters championships. Barton’s time over the 50 metres Breaststroke was his best for three years. Barton also swam to fourth place in the 400m Individual Medley.

Swimming for the final year in the 50 – 54 year age group, David Wright recorded best times for the year in all five of his events. He finished in sixth place in the 200m Butterfly, eighth in the 400m Individual Medley and ninth in the 200 metres Backstroke. Wright’s times in both the 200m Butterfly and 100m Individual Medley were the fastest times he had done for over two years whilst his 400m Individual Medley time was two seconds faster than when he had last swum the event five years ago.

John O’Rourke, in the 45 – 49 year age group, joined all of his club mates who competed in the 400m Individual Medley in securing a top ten finish. His time was a personal best by three seconds. O’Rourke’s best placing was a fourth in the 200 metres Backstroke as he swam his fastest time for five years in that event. His time over the 200 metres Freestyle was also his fastest in five years.

Competing in the same age group, Ian Norman recorded his best times for two years in both his 50 and 200 metres Freestyle.

After a fourteen-year absence from Masters competition, Glenda Mayes smashed her entry times in all three of her events in the 55 – 59 year age group. Her best result came with a sixth place in the 50 metres Backstroke.

Masters at 2015 Nationals


The fact that all of the competing swimmers exceeded their own expectations and achieved such improvements on their best times was testament to the many hours of coaching given to Team Luton’s Masters squad by Pauline Harrington, assisted by Jane Cattle.

East Region Masters – October 2015 – Medals Galore

Medals Galore For Team Luton Masters At East Region Championships

Team Luton enjoyed incredible success at the 2015 East Region Masters championships held at Newmarket, with the swimmers bringing home a total of 25 medals, eleven of them gold, and recording two new County Masters records in the process.

In the Men’s 45 – 49 age group, John O’Rourke collected two gold medals in the 400m Freestyle and 200m Backstroke. He also finished fourth in the 50m, recording a season’s best time by 0.5 seconds, and fourth in the 200m Freestyle.

David Wright, competing at the top end of his 50-54 age group, won a bronze in the 100m Backstroke and three silvers in the 100m Individual Medley and both the 50m and 400m freestyle events. His 50m time was a season’s personal best. In his final event of the day, Wright powered his way to a gold medal over 100m Butterfly in a winning time of 1:14.55.

In the 55 – 59 age group, Alastair Gibb came away with two gold medals from the 200m Individual Medley and 200m Backstroke and three silvers from the 200m and 400m Freestyle and the 200m Breaststroke. Gibb’s time of 5:14.52 in the 400m Freestyle shaved 0.11 seconds off the Bedfordshire County record. Graham Powell finished fourth in that event but recovered sufficiently to win both the 50m and 100m backstroke titles, the latter in a season’s personal best time. Powell also collected a silver medal in the 100m Individual Medley.

Friendly team rivalry was also in evidence in the 60 – 64 year age group. Colin Mayes won both the 50m and 100 Breaststroke with Malcolm Barton finishing second on each occasion. In addition to a bronze medal in the 50m Freestyle, Mayes beat his own Beds County masters record by 0.33 seconds to win the 100m Individual Medley. Malcolm Barton nevertheless came away with his own gold medal, winning the 200m Breaststroke.

Team Luton’s men were defending their 200+ years 4 x 50m Freestyle and Medley relay titles. Despite finishing second in both races this year, they only lost to a visiting Spanish team. It was still an impressive achievement, considering the Freestyle relay of Powell, Wright, O’Rourke and Gibb had a combined age of 214 years whilst the Medley relay of Powell, Mayes, Wright and Gibb had 228 years between them.

In only her second ever Masters competition, Eloise Turner finished outside of the medals swimming to fourth place in the Women’s 40- 44 year 50m Freestyle and fifth in both the 50m and 100m Breaststroke. Having arrived late at the competition due to a flat car battery in the morning, Turner’s time in the last event was a personal best time by over three seconds.

All in all it was a day on which coach Pauline Harrington and the small group of Team Luton supporters went home pleased with everyone’s performances.

Stunning Competitive Debut For Turner

At the age of 43 in her very first competitive swims, Team Luton’s Eloise Turner produced stunning performances at the Barnet Copthall Masters Sprint Meet.

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A self-taught swimmer, Turner joined the club in late 2014 and received her first ever formal poolside training and stroke improvements from Masters coach, Pauline Harrington. Eloise therefore entered four events at Barnet with no expectations but got off to a winning start in her first race. She shattered her entry time in the 40 – 44 year age group 100 metres Breaststroke by 13 seconds to claim the gold medal.

In the second session of the meet, Eloise proceeded to take 11 seconds off her entry time in the first heat of the 50 metres Breaststroke. Watching the faster seeded swimmers in their heats, further joy came as coach Pauline delightedly advised Eloise that her time of 48:87 seconds had secured her a second gold medal by the narrowest of margins, just one hundredth of a second.

Two fourth places in the 50 and 100 metres Freestyle, where Eloise also smashed her entry times, rounded off a truly remarkable day and leaves her hungry for future competitive opportunities.

In a hotly contested 45 – 49 year age group, John O’Rourke had three top ten finishes in the 50 metres Breaststroke, 100 metres Butterfly and 50 metres Freestyle, some of his lesser favoured events. The Team Luton swimmer’s preference is for longer distance Freestyle and Backstroke events. So, with negative split times, John’s endurance came to the fore as he claimed the bronze medal in the 100 metres Backstroke, his fourth event in just a single two hour long session.

Competing in the 55 – 59 age group, Alastair Gibb finished second in the 100 metres Backstroke and 100 metres Breaststroke, the latter in a season’s best time. Gibb also won his 100 metres Butterfly and 4 x 25 metres Individual Medley events and surprised himself in the very last event of the day, claiming gold in the 100 metres Freestyle by three hundredths of a second.

Open Water 2015 –  July 2015 – National Silver For Dave Wright

National Open Water Silver For Dave Wright

At the ASA National Masters Open Water Championships held at Rother Valley, David Wright powered his way to a silver medal in the 50 ­- 54 years age group 3km swim. His time was 46 minutes 17.7 seconds.

Dave Wright 2015 Open Water silver

This swim followed on from his victory in the 50 – 59 age group Open Water 3km at the East Region Masters when he completed the distance in 45 minutes and 25 seconds.

Bedfordshire ASA have also announced that David finished second in the Bedfordshire 3000m Open Water Senior Boyschampionships for 2015. Not bad for a “Master”!

Malcolm Barton & Alastair Gibb at 2015 GB National LC Masters

Malcolm Barton and Alastair Gibb were both in record-breaking form at the GB Long Course Masters swimming championships held in Manchester,

Malcolm beat the East Region and Bedfordshire County records for the 60 – 64 year age group 200 metres Breaststroke by over six seconds to win a bronze medal. His time of 3:15:62 was just over a second behind that of a Hungarian competitor who collected the silver medal. Malcolm also finished in 5th place in the 100 metres Breaststroke.

Alastair Gibb won his bronze medal in the 55 – 59 year age group 400 metres Individual Medley. His time of 6:18:05 was a new County record and beat the old East Region record by 25 seconds. Alastair also finished in 6th place in the 200 metres Breaststroke, whilst claiming Bedfordshire County records in both the 100 metres Butterfly and 50 metres Backstroke events.