March 3, 2020                                                                                    Media Release

Hills swimmers sweep the pool at Regional Carnival

Sydney Hills athletes shone at this year’s Special Olympics Regional Swimming Carnival, held at Oakhill College on March 1, winning 12 first places and seven second places.

Sixteen Hills swimmers competed in this year’s meet, five more than last year, despite changes to the rules that discouraged some athletes from entering.

They were up against swimmers from Canberra, Central Coast, Flinders, Hunter Valley, Illawarra, Macarthur, Northern Beaches, Sydney East, Sydney South, Sydney West, and. Upper North Shore

Hunter Valley athletes scored 10 firsts and eight seconds, a highly commendable result given that this year only 10 of its athletes entered compared with 16 last year.

Top Hills competitor was Corey Atkinson, 25, who took first place in his 200m breaststroke and 200m freestyle events, and second place in the shorter 50m freestyle.

Sydney Hills swimmers Kayla Van Zeeland, Patrick Cusack and Ben Withford each won two of their three races, while Ashlie Becker, Lauren Heggie and Mitchell Duncan all took home one first place ribbon.

Hills SO athlete Shay Bell powered home in fine style in his 100m backstroke race to win by a lap of the 25m pool..

Matthew Swinburne, 18, from Upper North Shore, was the top athlete on the day, winning all four of his races – the 50m freestyle, 50m breaststroke, 50m butterfly and 100m breaststroke.

Canberran Darcy Wilson also impressed with an impressive 3m19s dash to claim first place in the 200m individual medley.

Once again organiser Russell Becker kept things moving in a thoroughly professional manner, with only a couple of minor delays during the event. Russell was ably assisted by Hills SO committee members, as well as more than 20 Oakhill College students.

Media contact: Michael Richardson 0408 672 404

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