Brits in Rio School Games Exchange
The next generation of talented young swimmers concluded a training camp to Rio with a haul of medals at the Brazilian School Olympics.
The British swimmers were at the event as part of a DCMS London 2012-Rio 2016 strategy and it was part of an agreement between the UK and Brazil in the lead up to the London 2012 and Brazil 2016 Olympic Games.
The squad of eight brits won 23 medals from 24 finals including 15 golds, 6 silvers and two bronzes.
Jessica Lloyd (City of Manchester), who swam as part of the relay team at the London Olympics, dominated the Freestyle events winning three individual gold medals in the 50m (26.46), 100m (56.92) and 200m Freestyle (2.03.75).
Lloyd was also part of the relay quartet with Elena Sheridan, Danielle Lowe and Natasha Hofton who took the 4 x 100m Freestyle title in 3.53.55 – five seconds ahead of their nearest rivals.
Sheridan (Romford Town) also took a hat trick of individual gold medals and a further relay silver in the 4x50m Mixed Medley with Lowe, James Guy and Nathan Theodoris.
Sheridan, European Junior Champion, won the 50m Butterfly in 28.36, the 100m Butterfly in 1.01.40 and the 200m Individual Medley in 2.19.27.
City of Sheffield’s Matthew Johnson dominated the 1500m Freestyle to win with a clear five second margin in 16.00.30. He was also over a second clear to take the win in the 200m Individual Medley in 2.07.53.
Johnson was part of the victorious 4x100m Freestyle relay quartet with Guy, Theodoris and Ackland, who claimed the gold in a winning time of 3.30.73. The same team also won silver in the 4x100 Medley relay 3.51.48.
Backstroker Natasha Hofton showed good form, with wins in the 50m (30.00) and 100m (1.02.95) events. Danielle Lowe also won two golds in the 50m and 100m Breaststroke in 32.92 and 1.10.99 respectively.
Millfield’s James Guy raced in six finals, medalling in all races. In addition to his relay medals, he also won the 200m Freestyle in 1.50.24, was second in the 100m Butterfly with a time of 55.08 and third in the 100m Freestyle in 52.39.
Harry Ackland, the Breaststroke specialist from Plymouth Leander was second in the 100m in 1.06.41 and third in the 50m in 30.24.
Sprinter Nathan Theodoris won two individual silver medals finishing second in both the 100m Backstroke in 27.78 and the 50m Backstroke in 27.09. He also just missed the medals in the Freestyle finishing in fourth with a time of 27.09.
Mark Perry, British Swimming Development Coach said: “We saw some really solid swims over the weekend from the team, with plenty of medals.
“Our swimmers are here as part of the DCMS London 2012 – Rio 2016 link which saw them compete at the Ollmpiadas Escolares, a Brazilian School Olympics and is a very serious competition in Brazil.
“The aim of the camp was to expose some of our best up and coming youngsters to the Brazilian climate, culture, food and lifestyle.
“It was a challenging week but they have responded well and performed really well tough conditions.”
Trudi Else, Chef de Mission for the School Games GB said: “We are delighted that the Brazilian Government invited some of our best young athletes to compete at the Jogos Scolaires.
“It is a significant multi sport event with quality competition and offers our athletes an experience of how it might feel to be part of an event such as an Olympic Games.
“It certainly has been an amazing and unique opportunity for the School Games GB Team and the swimmers have produced some fantastic performances of which we are very proud.”