Gold rush for Camden Swiss Cottage Masters

Camden Swiss Cottage's Chris Hopton (left) with Masters coach Wojciech Slusarczyk

Camden Swiss Cottage's Chris Hopton (left) with Masters coach Wojciech Slusarczyk - Credit: Archant

A trio of Camden Swiss Cottage Masters swimmers secured two gold medals each at the Barnet Copthall Open Meet.

Chris Hopton, Martin Woodhams and Stuart Matthews were the men to lead the club’s medal haul, which eventually yielded six golds, five silvers and two bronzes.

Hopton, competing in the 40-44 age-group, was on good form, winning the 400m freestyle in four minutes 33.06 seconds – his fastest time of the season so far – and the 100m freestyle in 57.47, a little over his 56-second ambition.

Woodhams (50-54) had a busy and successful meet, competing in six events, with his golden double coming in the 200m breaststroke and 800m freestyle. He added silvers in the 100m breaststroke and 400m freestyle and bronze in the 100m freestyle.

Woodhams is improving rapidly as a pool competitor, having come from a triathlon background.

The extra speed developed in these pool events will also be of great benefit when he competes again in open water and triathlon events, which are reliant on quick starts and renowned for competitive and congested turns around buoys and close finishes.

Stuart Mathews, also in Woodhams’ 50-54 age group, showed his great versatility again by winning both the 200m backstroke and 200m butterfly.

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Tamsin Jaggs (55-59) was a silver medallist in all three of her events – the 100m, 400m and 800m freestyle – and took three seconds off the 100m time she set in May. Elena de la Camara (45-49) was awarded bronze in 400m freestyle.

Next season looks set to be an exciting one for all London Masters swimming clubs as the European Masters Championships are being held at the 2012 Olympic Pool at the London Aquatic Centre in Stratford in May 2016.

There are qualifying times for this prestigious event and Masters swimmers all over the UK are now lining up their competitions for the new season, which starts in September, to ensure they are qualified and fully prepared to race the very best in Europe when they descend on Stratford in their thousands.