An unprecedented 938 students from 123 schools lit up the pool at the Sydney Catholic Schools Swimming Championships at Sydney Olympic Park Aquatic Centre in Homebush on Tuesday 15 March 2022.
In what was a Sydney Catholic Schools (SCS) first, students from both primary and secondary schools competed on the same day.
The morning saw 390 students from 85 schools compete across 140 races, while the afternoon and evening session involved 548 students from 38 high schools competing across 100 races.
The Championships also featured an unprecedented level of multi-class athletes, with 18 students swimming in both primary and secondary events.
LEADING THE WAY
The day was a chance for some of the best young swimmers in Sydney to show their potential and they certainly didn’t disappoint with a number of SCS records tumbling. Brother-sister duo Ella and Max from St Therese Catholic Primary School Mascot dominated in the primary session, with the pair breaking two records each on their way to both being crowned Age Champions.
10-year-old Ella broke records in the 50m freestyle and the 50m backstroke, while 12-year-old Max set new benchmarks in the 50m freestyle and the 200m individual medley.
Standouts in the secondary session included 14-year-old St Mary’s Cathedral College student Victor Strokin winning an incredible 10 races, and 16-year-old Payne Nell from St John Bosco College Engadine who came out on top in seven races.
Please note: all podium photos will be distributed by schools.
THE ROAD AHEAD
It’s a quick turnaround for qualifying swimmers who will now move on to compete at the Catholic Schools NSW Championships on Tuesday 22 March 2022.
For primary students, a NSW Combined Primary School (NSWCPS) Mackillop team will then be selected to attend the NSW Primary School Sports Association (NSWPSSA) Swimming Championships in April.
Meanwhile, qualifying secondary swimmers will compete at the NSW Combined High Schools championship.
Following that, the top swimmers will compete to be crowned the best in the country at the School Sport Australia Swimming Championships later this year.
Sport at Sydney Catholic Schools
Swimming is one of 16 representative pathway sports offered to primary school students at SCS.
“Sydney Catholic Schools is proud to provide our students with the opportunity to develop fundamental skills in a variety of sports and also the chance to trial and represent at a state and national level,” SCS’ Executive Director, Tony Farley, said.
“This includes instilling core values of discipline, teamwork, respect, integrity and fair play in our young sporting stars.
“At Sydney Catholic Schools, we believe sport is for everybody, from non competitive participation through to our elite athletes.
“Besides being fun, sport can help kids perform better in school, relax more and worry less.
“Sport also teaches students valuable life lessons in working with others and how to be gracious in victory and in defeat,” added Mr Farley.
SCS offers students a pathway to higher representative sport, starting with school trials, moving through to zone, conference, and inter-Diocesan levels and, finally, progressing to state and national competitions.