October 2017

Waterworld Upgrade

No doubt you’ve seen in the newspaper and on social media that the Hamilton City Council have approved a significant redevelopment at Hamilton’s Waterworld.

A big part of the redevelopment will be the upgrade of the air filtration system, the network of pipes which support the pool operation, and the installation of new acoustic tiles.  What this all means from a swimming perspective is cleaner air, less noise, flash new floor coverings, new racing blocks and a deeper pool (1.4m at each end and 1.55m in the middle).  This is fantastic news for swimming in the region and although we will all experience some inconvenience while the pool is closed, we’ll end up with a quality competition pool with some of the best spectator seating in the country.

At this stage, we expect the pool to be closed from 1 February for a period 5-6 months (to be confirmed).  We’ll keep you up to date as this project progresses.

We need more Technical Officials

We’re on the hunt again – there’s no other way to say it, we need more Technical Officials.

As our swimmers progress through the different stages of our swim meets, they become more and more focussed on swimming personal best  times and qualifying for target meets.  And our Technical officials play a key role in supporting this swimming pathway.  Without the required number of Technical Officials on pool deck for our Festival, XLR8 and Regional meets, the meets won’t be approved and our swimmers won’t be able to use those swims as qualifying times.  That’s why we’re always asking for more technical officials – so we have the opportunity to develop our current group of officials, and train a whole bunch of new ones.  It means our swim meets will be approved by Swimming New Zealand, and our swimmers will get to celebrate their swimming goals.  Currently, we have 38 qualified Technical Officials which means we need most of them to attend every swim meet that we host.  It’s a huge ask, particularly as many of them no longer have swimmers involved in our sport.  If we can grow our base of Technical Officials, we can spread the load across all the meets that are hosted in the Waikato each year.

What we need is for each Club to have a minimum of one technical official for every four competitive swimmers.  It sounds a lot – but in reality, it means we can rotate officials during our two day swim meets, give our officials a break during meets, and even give them weekends off !   So please – as a swimming parent, consider joining our family of Technical Officials and help us deliver quality swimming opportunities to our members.  We provide all the training (and a flash Waikato shirt) – all we need from you is an email to say you’re keen, and we’ll get your training underway.

Click HERE for more information about our Technical Officials.

Hi from Darren Ward, our new Hub Coach

I would like to take this opportunity to introduce myself to you all and to express my eagerness to take up the role of Swimming Waikato's Hub Coach in early 2018.

There are a number of factors that attracted me to Swimming Waikato - one being the enthusiasm of those who, along with Clive and Cherie, decided to challenge the norm and to take a chance on a new concept. I have been encouraged by the Hub, its vision for the future and the long-term planning to make these visions a reality. It is, for this reason, I believe the Hub can match my own ambitions and drive.

I have every confidence that the region has the talent pool and resources to produce exciting waves of competitive swimmers, these athletes should be expected to challenge themselves and their competitors on the Worlds biggest stages. It will require an incredible amount of hard work, dedication, resilience, and self-belief on the part of Swimming Waikato, individual club management, club coaches, parents, and of course the swimmers themselves, to reach these ends.

Swimming is a discipline that brings multiple benefits to those that participate, many of whom wish to remain non-competitive. The beauty of a swimming pathway is that it should combine the goals of each participant and as such it will be my goal to ensure we promote and support the goals of all swimmers, regardless of ability, age or sex.

From now until January, I will continue as I have been to liaise with both Clive and Cherie in order to be up to date with the all the appropriate updates. I have also passed on my details to all club coaches to discuss any matters that they wish to raise, a thank you to all those who coaches who have already been in touch.

I look forward to working alongside the individual clubs, coaches swimmers and all stakeholders in the new year. Until then I hope the remainder of 2017 is productive and that your days are warmer and drier than mine here in Scotland.

Best wishes
Darren Ward

A NZSC Champs overview from Fairfield Swimming Club


17 swimmers proudly represented Fairfield Swimming Club recently at the New Zealand Short Course Champs in Auckland.

We are very pleased to say that Fairfield finished 5th club overall out of 81 competing clubs.

Within this group we had 4 rookies competing at their first National event, so a big experience for them - well done to Ella, Kelly, James-Hardy and Calib. We also had Bradlee and Jesse who train with High Performance squad representing us as well.

A big congrats to the rest of the squad - Claudia, Andrew, Sophie, Peyton, Jaxyn, Hamish, Michiel, Jessica, Kaitlyn S, Maddison and Jordyn for your superb efforts. The whole squad supported all swimmers cheering from the sidelines with great enthusiasm- it’s a wonder some had a voice afterwards.

There were many PBs attained with all swimmers giving their utmost in their events with some our swimmers making open finals in some of their events.

Acknowledgment to the follow swimmers for their results:

Andrew Jeffcoat - A Gold and 2 Silver age group medals. He swam 7 events and made finals in all 7. Most impressively he had a 100% PB rate.

Jordyn Williams - 4 Bronze Age group medals

Jesse Reynolds - 2 Gold, 5 Silver and a Bronze

Bradlee Ashby- 8 Gold, 5 Silver Open Medals and a NZ record.

Many thanks to our Head Coach Ken for his ongoing support of all our swimmers. And to Jane and Maree who gave their time to Team Manage our team for the week.


2017 NZ Short Course Champs ... a summary from Ace

Ace Swimming Club arrived back from the New Zealand Short Course Championships held on the North Shore of Auckland after a successful week of competition.

It has been a time of renewal on two fronts for the Hamilton club that are the only year round residents at the Waterworld pool in Te Rapa. Firstly, this month saw the arrival of a new director of coaching for the club, Paul Dowey. Secondly, the announcement made by Hamilton Pools and Hamilton City Council for the $10 million upgrade of the Te Rapa facility.

However the changes have seemed to have only had a positive impact upon the 7 athletes that made the commitment to travel and compete on the North Shore. The resilience of this current bunch of Ace athletes has been noted; Kayla Ansley, Maddie & Jess Chapman, Sarah Wilson, Carlos & Danyon Hardie and Caleb Parsons all took part in the meet. Over 56% of their races were personal bests.

Medals for age groups were presented from results in the morning heats whilst the evenings saw athletes compete against an ‘Open’ age range from all around New Zealand. The team took home 5 age group medals (2 gold, 1 silver, 2 bronze). There were 25 swims from 5 athletes that ranked inside the top 10 for their age groups. There were 13 finals (A2, B4, D7) from 4 Open finalists.

“All the swimmers did well especially those who made finals.” said Director of Coaching at Ace Swimming Club, Paul Dowey. “However Danyon Hardie deserves a special mention.” he said. Danyon took 4 medals for his 16yr age group. Two gold medals in the 200 & 400 IM events, silver in the 1500m freestyle and a bronze in the 100 IM. He placed 8th & 6th respectively overall in New Zealand in his 200m & 400 IM events, a great result. In true sibling style, the other medal winner was younger brother Carlos who took home a bronze medal in the 1500m freestyle.

“The club is always open to new members.” said assistant coach Abbie Armstrong. “If we have inspired the ‘Olympian within’ come and try us out.” Ace is an an ideal accompaniment to your current learn-to-swim programme. If you can swim 25m on your back and front Ace Swimming Club are keen to hear from you. Take your swimming further and get in touch via email or see us on poolside from 3:30pm each weekday at Te Rapa Waterworld, Hamilton.