Eighteen members of the Oamaru Swim Club are gearing up for the pinnacle event of the year.
The Makos division of the New Zealand Junior Swimming Meet will be held at at the CBay Aquatic Centre in Timaru from today until Sunday.
The swimmers from Oamaru will compete in their respective age groups over three days against hundreds of other juniors from Nelson to Invercargill, Oamaru Swim Club president Sonya Macdonald said.
“It’s realistically a national meet,” Macdonald said.
“It’s a fantastic opportunity for them to go and showcase all of their hard work that they’ve been putting in over the last 12 months.
“They have all been working really hard so I have my fingers crossed for them that it all pays off.”
Oamaru’s team was “very strong”, Macdonald said.
“We’ve got swimmers across the board, in all strokes [and age groups], who are very much medal contenders, which is huge,” she said.
“We don’t have one or two swimmers who are standing out – we have all of them putting up their hands and going for that top three.”
For the past two years, the Oamaru Swim Club has won the overall points competition to earn the status of top South Island junior club. Coach Narcis Gherca is hoping the club will defend its title again this year.
“We’re hoping to go third year running,” Macdonald said.
The Oamaru Swim Club team will be represented at the meet by Georgia Fraser, Okerao Jamieson, Olivia McLean, Elias Fraser, James Soal, Willow Bartlett, Hannah Burke, Frankie McDiarmid-Jones, Cameron Notman, Eric Strachan, Marianne Alegre, Deegan Croucher, Ella Fraser, Maddison Phillips, Emily Southee, Hanna Strachan, Neighton Fraser and Davi Vogel Brayner.