Garstang swimmer Matthew joins the county elite

Matthew Charlesworth
Matthew Charlesworth
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A swimmer from Garstang Gators Swimming Club scooped top prize during the first of three weekends of the Lancashire County Swimming Championships.

Eleven-year-old Matthew Charlesworth was one of eight other swimmers from the club to qualify for the competition, one of the toughest championships in the country to enter because of the size of the county.

“Having any swimmer qualify for the County Championships is quite an achievement for a small club such as ours, which doesn’t have the same level of funding or pool time as larger clubs,” said Sue Booth, Gators’ head swimming coach.

“The fact that nine swimmers have qualified this year in various events is amazing and is the best in our club’s history.”

Charlesworth’s championship success occurred on day one of the competition during the boys 200m breaststroke where he exceeded all expectations to go away with the top prize.

Not only did he knock five seconds off his previous personal best time and achieve a qualifying time for the Regional Championships but he beat off all opposition to win the gold medal and become the 11-year-old Lancashire County 200m breaststroke champion.

Booth added: “We are incredibly proud of Matthew for his outstanding performance.

“It’s going to be a hard act to follow in the next two Championship weekends!”