THUNDER BAY – This past weekend 6 ThunderBolt swimmers travelled to Toronto to compete in the 2019 Summer Festival Championships. The best male and female swimmers aged 13 and under from across the provincial descended on the Markham Pan Am pool for the elite competition.
There were a total of 45 teams that competed for the title. The ThunderBolts turned in an outstanding effort as the men placed 6th overall.
“Any good club is built on a strong foundation. Our performance at this year’s Festival Championship clearly demonstrates our development and strength,” stated an exuberant head coach Tommaso Panizza. “This year, as a team we did awesome and we had some excellent individual performances. Next year, my goal is top 3 overall and to continue with individual achievement but with three times more athletes.”
Luke Foulds lead the charge in the pool, breaking 8 ThunderBolt club records, some more than 30 years old, in the Freestyle and Backstroke events. Racing against the best in the province Foulds won 4 gold medals, 1 silver and 1 bronze. Foulds also scored the highest number of points for all 12-year-old males.
“I was pretty happy with my races getting all best times,” said Luke Foulds. “I was very proud when I managed to break my dad’s records in my second last swim meet of the year as a 12-year-old,” added Foulds.
Sam Chisholm swimming in the 13-year-old category, excelled against the competition, winning gold in the 400 m Individual Medley, 400 m & 800 m Freestyle, as well as 2 silver and 1 bronze medal.
“The whole team performed at such a high level,” said Sam Chisholm. “Personally I was most happy with achieving 4 National times and breaking 5 minutes for the first time in the 400 m Individual Medley,” added Chisholm.
The ThunderBolts’ other medal winner was 12-year-old Kaitlyn Luu swimming to a bronze medal in the 400 m Individual medley.
Other swimmers competing in Markham were Matthew Foulds, McKenzie Thompson, and Fischer Jackson. All swimmers returned home with outstanding swims and best times.
“The results of this weekend are a culmination of commitment, dedication and hard work. The athletes’ passion for excellence is clear. I am really looking forward to building on this weekend’s results for the future,” added Coach Panizza.
Up next for the ThunderBolt Swim Club is the Junior Provincial Championships in Toronto and the final competition of the season at the AquaJet Invitational Swim Meet in Minneapolis.