Swimming sensation Angharad Evans is targeting a return to the international stage in 2018 as she reflects on an ‘exciting’ last 12 months.
The 14-year-old from Little Abington was awarded a scholarship from Ellesmere College in Shropshire over the summer, following her breaking two British Age records (13-years-old) at the 2017 British Nationals.
And the West Suffolk Swimming Club (WSSC) member said the training and knowledge she has gained at the school has already helped her progress as a swimmer, recently breaking another age group record (14-years) at a recent meeting in Canada.
Angharad, who primarily competes at 50m and 100m breaststroke, said: “I’ve been really pleased, I thought I had a good year in 2016 but 2017 was even better.
“Better even than I imagined. Hopefully I can make this year even bigger but we’ll have to just see. It’s exciting.
“I’m wanting to race over 200m and I’m working on improving my times.
“It’s a new challenge for me and I’m enjoying it, although it does hurt more.
“I would love to make the Europeans again this year and I’m going to work really hard; I just want to be the best I can be.”
Her mum Jill Evans said: “Team GB approached her about going, to gain experience at the international meet.
“She was going to go to the Commonwealth trials in Sheffield but this was a better option for her at this stage.
“She’s one of the most impressive 14-year-old swimmers in Britain and it’s looking good for the next year.
“It’s always hard at this age though, a lot of children start to plateau but Angharad hasn’t yet.”
Despite adding another record to her belt, Jill said her daughter was disappointed not to get a medal.
“This year and the school has really made her hungrier for it,” she said. “And she’s so much happier at the school now too.
“It was harder for her before to make friends with the amount of training she did, but she’s in a sport environment now.
“She’s met a group of young and ambitious swimmers, and that’s good to push her too.”
Next up for Angharad is the 2018 British Swimming Championships in Edinburgh at the start of March, where she hopes to impress British junior selectors.
Meanwhile at the WSSC, Jack Bowyer recently competed in the British Winter Championships and followed it up with a Phase 2 England Talent Camp after.
The 50m and 100m butterfly swimmer trained with the best in the country over the two-day event.
And, in other successes for the club during 2017, Taylor Bowen won a bronze medal in the 100m butterfly at the Swim England Summer National Meet, while regional 200m champion Ella Hale also competed.
Charlotte White and Edward Merhan both won gold medals in their respective age groups at the Regional Championships. Both were also selected for the East Region Talent Camps.
Ollie Pyle was made winter regional open age 50m butterfly champion and Annabelle Ireland became a double medallist at the Junior National Para Championships, winning a silver in the 14/16yrs 200m IM and a bronze medal in the 14/16yrs 400m Free.