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Dan and David compete at National Lifesaving Competition
Posted by Sally on 21 September
Dan Leggott and David Eke represented South Axholme Sharks and South Yorkshire at the recent Lifesaving Nationals held at Leeds, please read Dan's report below.
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On the 3rd of September David and Dan represented South Axholme Sharks and South Yorkshire at the 2017 RLSS Yorkshire heat for the National Lifesaving Championships at the John Charles Centre in Leeds.

The competition was fierce with over 100 lifesavers of age 12 years all the way to masters competing for the accolade of Yorkshire Lifesaving Champion and for places at the national lifesaving championships. All competitors take part in all events, as individuals for men and women and as a pair for seniors and junior competitors. The four events are a wet simulated emergency response competition (SERC), a dry SERC, a rope throw race and a swim and tow race. The wet SERC was very challenging with seven casualties requiring attention. The dry SERC was very closely contested. The rope throw and swim and tow were quite successful for the boys with the highlight being a 2nd place in the swim and tow by David.

David and Dan came 7th and 6th respectively in their age category with several places being decided by a very small points difference. Efforts will be redoubled to increase the squads’ size and success for next year.
David competes abroard in the Vidosternsimmet 21+km swim.
Posted by Sally on 24 August
Vidosternsimmet 21+km swim
The concept of the swim is that you take yourself to four checkpoints, three of which are on land, and the navigation is up to the swimmers. The organisers have posted 20 large (don’t look so large from 1km away) yellow buoys over the 21.5km course.
Here is Davids account of the race.
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06:45 – Nervous
We arrived at the start area:
Mist rolling off the lake, inspirational music pouring from the speakers, announcements been made in gibberish (or Swedish as they like to call it).
I collected my assigned tow float and decided to make my way to a collection of swimmers gathering around a bonfire. Just behind this I noticed a large red fire engine, which struck me as a little excessive, considering we were next to a lake, even for safety-conscious Swedes. (I think they'd explode if they ever went to the Haxey Hood where they set a man on fire!)
07:00 – Very, very nervous and I need a wee
Stood on the start line my main thought been: this is a terrible idea; maybe if I could fake an injury I’d leave without my pride too badly hurt. Before I could fully formulate my escape plan, Boom! We were off. Damn-I might actually have to do this.
I managed to settle into a nice steady rhythm early on finding a pair of feet and just staying on them to draft off. This worked brilliantly for the first 3km but then I noticed a gap forming between the guy I was drafting off and the next group up the lake so at Funtabo (the first stop - 3700m) I decided to ditch this group, quickly have a gel and see if I could hitch a ride up the lake.
08:05 – Felt good but wanting to keep it steady
After 1km of chasing down the next group I attached myself to the back of the perfect swimmer - 6ft 3 and big-boned. His style was very much to try and pound the water into submission instead of gliding effortlessly through it; This aggressive style did make him perfect to draft off. Because of this, km 4 - 8 were delightful.
09:15 – Screw it, Let’s go for it!
Arriving at Tanno (2nd stop, 7600m) I decided that mine and Arnold’s relationship wasn’t going to last so I again quickly shoved a gel down and chased down the group in front - why not? I’m feeling good so what could possibly go wrong?
8 - 10km was going well, I really pushed hard thinking that I could expend energy now and again draft off the next group as a rest. I caught up to next swimmer but then, suddenly, I couldn’t swim in a straight line; every time I lifted my head my vision would just be a blur and be spinning; my shoulders became lead weights. I tried desperately to get behind him but every time I lifted my head I got the disappointing sight of seeing the guy I’d tried so hard to catch just slip away from me. Now I couldn’t draft off him anymore and, equally important, I would now need to sight for myself which was becoming harder and harder.
10:55 – UGGHHH!!!
13.1km, miserable, I arrived at the next stop. Arnie and the group I had ditched came in just minutes later still looking fresh. Determined not to make the same mistake, I stayed for 3 minutes loading up on mint cake and gels and attended to a matter of re-heating the wetsuit whilst waiting for the next group to start so I could use them to draft or just to use their tow floats to sight since the buoys were so hard to see.
(Warming up strategy)
I did try offering my services to let someone draft off of me but they quickly gave this up when they realised I had no idea where I was going so the effort saved was not worth the extra distance covered (overall in the 21.5km race I actually managed 22.7km according to my Garmin, whoops). The next 3.4km went by fairly unremarkably taking me to 16.5km and the last stop before the finish.
14:00 – Ouch, ouch, ouch, breathe, ouch, ouch, sight and breathe
With 3km to go I developed a very real hatred of swimming. I could see the end yet every time I lifted my head to sight the end stayed stubbornly a long way away. This constant reminder of future pain to be had was quite demoralising for a body that had had enough by this point.
14:54 - Relief
Soon, just like the other stages, I was through, and managed to catch a second wind (which would have been appreciated earlier instead of 500m from the finish) under the bridge and there it was. The only thing I had cared about for the last 7 hours: the finish.
I neither slapped the water like Peaty nor climbed up onto the lane ropes like Phelps; I just sort of held onto the raft – knackered, just thinking of sleep and food - relieved.
Exhausted, I clambered up the cramp ramp, and an organiser began walking towards me with a microphone
Interviewer: “David Eke from Great Britain, Doncaster, Congratulations!”
Now it’s fair to say at this point I was a little tired therefore the interview I gave was not one of the most scintillating pieces of literature you’ll ever hear
Interviewer: How was the swim for you?
Me: ……Long……
Interviewer: (undeterred by my lack of enthusiasm) “And how did you find the event”?
Me: ………I googled “long swim”…….
Interviewer: (deterred by my lack of enthusiasm) – Well congratulations!
Final impressions:
- A very friendly atmosphere throughout the day
- Finished in 6 hours 54 minutes and 1st from the whole of Great Britain (admittedly there were only two of us)
- Swimming is hard work!

Sharks In Deep Water
Posted by Sally on 27 July
This year so far we have seen 4 of our older swimmers and 5 ex members take to the waters of the Lake District. Jonathan Grayson, David Eke, Jackie Buxton , Jordan Buxton, Alex Cook, Hannah Hirst, Sam Cook and Richard Eke swam Lake Windermere while Sam Smith swam Lake Coniston. Here is Sam's report
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Earlier this month on a very wet Saturday morning I swam Lake Coniston. Coniston is the third largest of the Lake Districts’ sixteen lakes. In length it is approximately 5.25 miles/8.45km long, and at its’ deepest point is 184ft/56m deep. I had the option of swimming 1 mile or 4.53miles/7.3km I chose the latter. We attended a briefing at the finish location, we then travelled by bus to the start location. We were allocated to a pod of swimmers of similar abilities along with a kayaker. Alistair the coach from advised that I needed to not look for the finish but to focus on the sides as it would be a while before the finish line was in view. The water temperature was 15c. After the first mile or so I settled into a steady pace and kept up this speed throughout. Everything went smoothly with great support from the pod kayaker. As I went through I managed to overtake and join the front pod of three and kept up with them for the last two miles or so. You can see me finish on the following link As this was a challenge the event was not timed but I completed in just over 2 hours. The pictures show me just before the race and the day after.
My next challenge is on 13 August when I am going to Llanberis in North Wales to take part in The Big Brutal Swim in Llyn Padarn which is the sixth deepest lake in Wales. I am going to swim in the 5km race. We are camping the night before because it is an early start.
Posted by lisa on 21 July

Can you design this years Halloween Meet T- Shirt?.....
The winning design will be printed on this years T-Shirt, to be worn by all those swimming for South Axholme Sharks.
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- Open to all members of South Axholme Sharks
- Enter as many designs as you want
- All designs must be on white A4 paper
- All designs must be in colour with a bold outline

REMEMBER......Small details do not print well.

Entries in by Monday 9th September 2017

Place all entries in a SEALED envelope, marked T-shirt competition, and hand to a member of the committee.

Summer Fun Night.
Posted by lisa on 05 July
This years Summer Fun Night will take place Friday 21st July 2017.
Pete Smith is again in charge of the games, and a evening of fun is to be had by all.
Fun Night is open to all swim members of South Axholme Sharks.
Please sign up, by the 12th July, the information can be found on the Notice Board.
A Postcard from Scarborough
Posted by Jonathan on 29 June
The weekend’s swimming started before we got to Scarborough with Zoe and Emily being in action in the morning at the Humber School Games Finals at Grimsby alongside their Year 7 and 8 Sharks team mates who represented both Axholme (North) and South Axholme Academy’s. They were then in the pool again on the Friday evening session at Scarborough’s Annual A & B Gala.
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Despite being in competition mode all day the pair both showed their strength for going the distance and claimed PBs from their races, Emily in the 200m Free and Zoe in the 400m Free. The evening session also brought the first drama of the weekend when Poppy exactly equalled her own PB in the 400m Free. We all remarked there must be some ridiculous odds on being able to do this to the hundredth of a second while Poppy was consoled with a 2nd place medal.

This was followed by more top 3 place success throughout the weekend. Emily and Poppy medalled on both Saturday and Sunday, as did Lauren who joined the quartet of Sharks girls at the Saturday morning session. These 3 managed a 1, 2, 3, on the Saturday morning (not all in the same event). Emily claimed 1st in the 13 years 100m Breast in B Grade and Lauren 2nd in a PB time in A Grade in the same event for 14 year olds. Poppy took 3rd in A Grade in the 13 years 50m Back also with a new PB, as did Emily gaining her own PB in this event.

3 was Zoe’s lucky number for the weekend. She got 3 out of 3 PBs and claimed her own 3rd place medal in the 13 years 50m Fly at B Grade in the Saturday afternoon session, before leaving the swimming to the others for the rest of the weekend but not before the traditional gathering of Sharks on Saturday evening.

Families met up. Poppy got burried in the sand and gained a mermaid tail. Zoe and brother Robert join us in an oldies v. the girls in a game of crazy catch, clearing the rest of the bathers off South Bay Beach. Then we cooled off with a paddle in the sea on a beautifully warm evening, reminding us why we do like to be beside the sea.

The sea air must have been a tonic as Poppy swam to another 2 x 3rd places at A Grade in the 100m IM and 100m Back events after an early morning wake up on Sunday, with PBs set in both. Lauren also claimed 1st in the 100m Back in B Grade.

There are always highs and lows at the meet and this year’s long hot weekend tested everyone’s stamina. Lunchtime picnics brought some respite to all, with a welcome breeze and 'nana naps' all round. Perseverance paid off and on Sunday Emily and Lauren managed a double-double, with both taking a 2nd place in the 50m Breast event in the morning and again in the 100m Fly in the afternoon. This last event for the Sharks saw Emily taking a PB while Lauren had gained a PB from the 50m Free earlier in the session. The silver twins ended Scarborough 2017 with a high five poolside to finish. The SAS Scarborough Girls of 2017 can be pleased with their 3 PBs each gained through gritted teeth in the heat on poolside.

Messages came from the other 2 Scarborough girls from recent years who had stayed at home. Jess said she “wished she was there”, especially after seeing a photo of the impressive newly opened pool at the Scarborough Sports Village, where the 23rd Scarborough A & B Gala was being held for the first time. The Kaye’s sent a message asking how all was at Sunny Scarborough, we returned a message saying it wasn’t the same without them … some of us thinking of the time Bob slushed an official from the balcony (literally with a cup of slush down the back of the judge’s neck).

This memory is joined by others made in 2017 that keep drawing us back to the seaside gala year after year. Like the postcard suggests, the fight to get there in the Friday rush is always worth the effort; at least it is after a few days at home to reflect.
Annie is Top 12yr Old Girl at Team Jorvik Viking Sprints.
Posted by lisa on 25 June
Sharks keep up the good work at this years Viking Sprints held at John Charles Centre, Leeds on the 17th June 2017.
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Yet again Sharks were on form at the Gala.
As usual the swimmers did us proud, working hard to finish seventh out of the twenty four clubs attending.
The overall standard of swimming seemed to be higher this year , as this Meet becomes ever more popular. 21 swimmers represented South Axholme Sharks. (Alfie, Annie, Caitlin, Cerys, Charlotte, Daniella, Elodie, Hannah, Harry, Jack, Joanna, Kristopher, Leo, Lizzie, Mitchell, Molly, Nadine, Natalia, Oliver C, Rohan, Thomas).

ANNIE WILSON came home with Top Girl for her age group, achieved by finishing with two first place finishes, two third place finishes and one tenth place finish, giving her an accumulative score of 20 points, and the trophy for the 12 yr old girls.
Annie gained Top Girl at this Meet two years ago when she swam as a 10 yr old.

Alfie Nixon came close in the 10 yr old Boys Top Swimmers by finishing second in his age group.

Full results can be found on the results page on our website, or on

Another Top Performance from the Sharks Boys
Posted by Jonathan on 10 June
Kristopher Asher kept up the top swimmer momentum at open meets in taking home the top boy trophy for all 13 year olds at the Dartes B Grade Meet last weekend.

Kris scored 26 points from this maximum 5 event gala from 2 x 1st, 2 x 2nd and 3rd places, making him 12 points clear of the next highest scoring swimmer in his age group.
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One of his 1st's came as he also set a new club record in the 50m fly event clocking a PB time of 32.10 seconds. Kris is now well established as a fast flyer and is edging nearer to achieving his own target of a regional qualification time in this event. Keep up the good work Kris.

Other noted performances from the day's results were that of Elodie Maloigne, Oliver Buttrick, Alfie Nixon, and Annie Wilson all taking a clean sweep of PBs at the meet.

Special mention is also made of Oliver Crow in representing South Axholme Sharks at his first open meet.

There was plenty of lane end support and encouragement from team mates of all ages in the 22 strong Sharks squad competing at the Dartes Meet. All Sharks swimmers represented their club well and there were plenty of top 6 scoring placements gained throughout the day. These top 6 placements accumulated to South Axholme Sharks being the 3rd highest scoring club. We were just 7 points behind Rotherham Metro as the 2nd best team and Adwick ASC the best scorers of the 19 clubs represented. So well done to all our swimmers.

The team effort didn’t end there as I would thank parents Fiona McCallum and Paul Crow for being stand in team managers and to Shaun Nixon. Shaun stepped in to time keep after a last minute call to arms from other clubs for officials from Dartes. In the Sharks ‘can do way’ he joined Julie Hirst and Louise Maloigne in officiating duties culminating in a great team effort from everyone there. As Chairman it was great to receive a compliment on poolside that Sharks always present as a well organised club and for this I thank everyone in making a difference and the support they give. Its also nice to know that its noticed by other clubs.

Jonathan Exton
Chairman (time keeper and stand in team manager).
Thomas at the NER's
Posted by Stuart on 29 May
Thomas Flys the Sharks Flag at The NER's

This years spring NER's saw Thomas Crow as the one sharks representative in Sunderland, he was competing over both weekends of the championships in the 100M and 50M backstroke.
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The 100 Back was up first and saw Thomas win his heat in a time of 1:14.09 but he was left frustrated by missing the final by less than a second. The 2nd weekend saw him competing in the 50 Back and spurred on by some made up times from his mum he pushed himself to a new PB of 34.39 to finish second in his heat but again frustratingly he missed out a final place but by only 3/10th's this time.

Thomas has left the championships with a drive to compete at this level again, we just need to get some company for him.

May Sprints 2
Posted by Sally on 20 May
Another great afternoon !!!! More first swims, more records broken and more times slashed.
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Once again I would like to thank everyone involved in this afternoons May Sprints, all the volunteers, officials, swimmers, parents and Epworth Pool.

It was great to see some new faces competing for the first time.

We hope that May Sprints encourages more new swimmers to try Club Champs and our own Halloween Meet which is a great introduction to open meet swimming. If anyone has any questions regarding these events please feel free to speak with a committee member who will be willing to give you a bit more information.

Here are the records that were broken:-

11yrs 40m Free Lizzie McCallum 25.63
11yrs 20m Fly Lizzie McCallum 12.00
11yrs 80m IM Lizzie McCallum 1:04.75
12yrs 60m Back Annie Wilson 44.19
12yrs 60m Breaststroke Annie Wilson 49.49
12yrs 80m IM Annie Wilson 1:00.28
14yrs 60m Breaststroke Lauren Watson 47.85
14yrs 20m Fly Lauren Watson 11.69
15yrs 60m Back Charlotte Wilson 44.49
15yrs 80m IM Charlotte Wilson 1:00.28

13yrs 20m Free Kristopher Asher 11.14
13yrs 60m Free Kristopher Asher 38.56
13yrs 20m Breaststroke Kristopher Asher 13.97
13yrs 60m Fly Kristopher Asher 42.97
14yrs 60m Fly Oliver Buttrick 45.85
16-20 yrs 60m Fly Christopher Grayson 35.24
21&over 20m Free Jonathan Grayson 9.46
21&over 60m Free Jonathan Grayson 32.37
21&over 40m Back Jonathan Grayson 25.08
21&over 20m Breaststroke David Eke 11.09
21&over 40m Breaststroke David Eke 26.59
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