Braving an almost continual torrential downpour, over 700 swimmers raced at the Pacific Masters Short Course Yard Championships held at the Soda Aquatic Center over the weekend April 7-9. Eighteen lanes of swimmers competed across the width on the 25 yard course of the Olympic size pool located on the Campolindo High School campus in Moraga.
The local team of twenty Tuolumne County Aquatic Masters swimmers had an impressive showing by finishing fifth overall in the team competition. Over 100 swimmers competed on each of the three first place teams including the overall winner the University of San Francisco Masters, followed by Walnut Creek Masters, and Marcia’s Enthusiastic Masters. The Davis Aquatic Masters finished in fourth.
Each member of TCAM contributed both individual and relay points to the team total. With thirteen of the fourteen TCAM relays finishing in the top five, the team scored double the points for their relays. The 65+ men’s 400 free relay composed of Dave Fairfield, 77, Greg Jacobus, 65, Pete Fogarty, 66 and Dick Todd, 75 led the team with a gold medal finish.
The team recorded impressive meet statistics with 12 team records, 5 Pacific Masters records, 10 personal bests, 16 new swims, and 68 top five finishes in individual events.
Moving into a new age division, Dick Todd, 75 dominated with seven wins, 7 new team records and 5 Pacific Masters records in the 70-74. His records ranged from the 50 sprints to the middle distance 200’s. Todd was the age group high point winner. His Pacific Masters records were in the 50, 100 and 200 breast plus the 100 free and 200 back.
Joining his teammate in the 75-79 division, Dave Fairfield, 77 won all three of his events. He finished sixth in the 75-79 age division high point awards.
Senior swimmers, Bob Garretson, 84 and Toni Wivell, 80 continued to inspire the team with their racing successes. Garretson swimming on his 84th birthday won both his backstroke swims. Wivell placed in the top three in all six of her events. She finished second and Garretson sixth in the high point awards.
Paul McIlroy, 51 set three new team records in the 50-54 division in the 50 and 1000 free, and the 100 back. He won the 50 and 100 breast events.
Single team records were set by Connie Birdsall, 71 in the 200 IM and Patti Philpott, 46 in the 200 fly. Birdsall won the 500 free and placed 4th in the age group awards for the 70-74.
Philpott dropped 32 seconds in her 500 free and 11 in the 200 fly.
The youngest TCAM swimmer, Lisa Hieb-Stock, 37 set personal bests in all six of her swims. She placed 5th in the age division rankings.
Single bests were recorded by Pete Fogarty, 66, Gary Johnson, 66, Jacobus, and Stuart Welsh, 60. Jacobus dropped 34 seconds in his 200 back.
Grabbing first place wins were Susan White, 74 in the 100 fly and Kirby Smith, 71 in the 200 breast.
Finishing in the top ten in the age group awards along with Todd, Wivell, Birdsall, Hieb-Stock, Fairfield were Matt Gass, 59, fifth in 55-59, Fogarty and Karen Kessel, 67 sixth in the 65-69, Kyle Stock, 43, seventh in 40-44, Smith ninth in the 70-74 and Philpott tenth in the 40-44.
With strong distance training, TCAM swimmers paced well in both the 500 and 1000 free. Setting steady paces and fast finishes in the distance free events were Birdsall, Fairfield, Fogarty, Jacobus, Johnson, Kessel, McIlroy, Philpott, Wivell, Larry Carter, 68, Sheryl Parola, 68, and Robin Carter, 66.
The TCAM swimmers continue to train for the upcoming open water season and the Senior Games meet in Palo Alto.
Adults interested in swimming for fitness can contact Patti Scott-Baier at Sonora Sport and Fitness.