James swims his way to Ulster and Irish titles

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COLERAINE schoolboy, James Richardson, is still celebrating after winning the 100 metre freestyle race in the Irish Schools Swimming Championships at the weekend.

Apart from the individual event, James was also part of the four-man relay team who became Irish Schools’ champions in the free style relay race.

James, who is a member of Coleraine Swimming Club, added the accolade to a raft of other wins he has bagged this season.

He took gold in the 100 metre freestyle at the Ulster Schools Championships in January securing his place in the Ulster swimming squad.

Perhaps most excitingly he has also been chosen to swim for Ireland in the forthcoming UK school games to be held at the Olympic Pool in London this May.

He is not the only star currently training with the Coleraine club, Iain McCullough became Junior Ulster 50 metre butterfly champion at the December Short Course Championships and came third in the Senior Ulster 50 metre butterfly race at the same event.

Head coach, Keith Ferguson, said, “James has had a fantastic season which will culminate in his appearance for Ireland at the UK school games later this year. Both boys have trained hard and deserve their wins – it really is testament to their dedication and commitment to swimming that they have achieved so much.

“I, and the rest of the coaches, could not be more proud of our swimmers – they are a great example to others that hard work really does pay off,” said Keith.

Club chairperson, Lynn Montgomery, added, “Coleraine Swimming Club has not had a swimmer representing Ireland since the Robinson twins swam in the 1990s. Both girls swam at Olympic and Commonwealth level so who knows what’s ahead for James.”

This year Coleraine Swimming Club has enjoyed another very successful season with the club winning all its galas in the Provincial Towns League.

The last gala was held in Portadown on Saturday night when the team were once again victorious – with James and Iain’s help, of course!