25th October 2011

The Pavilions in the Park was packed with a record crowd on Saturday night for the inaugural Atlantis “Endless Pools” Trophy team gala.  Seven teams battled for the trophy, which is sponsored by local Horsham firm Home Counties Pools and Hot Tubs, who are the South East’s leading supplier of Endless Pools.  Atlantis entered an A and a B team - emphasising the club’s growing depth of swimmers - and they competed against 5 visiting clubs: Crawley, Littlehampton, Mid-Sussex Marlins, Redhill & Reigate and Shiverers from Brighton.

Roared on by a very vocal crowd, the young swimmers put on an impressive display of highly committed competitive swimming over 50 events, with the lead see-sawing about over the course of the evening.  Particularly exciting were the 18 relays, which were all swum at a fast and furious pace. 

At the end of the competition it was the Atlantis A team that emerged victorious to take the trophy presented by Craig Trusson, Home Counties’ Managing Director.  The result was very close and in doubt right up until the final squadron relay, with Redhill & Reigate just pipped into second place by just 3 points.  The final standings were Atlantis A 1st (251 points); Redhill & Reigate 2nd (248); Mid Sussex Marlins 3rd (236); Littlehampton 4th (222); Shiverers 5th (217); Crawley 6th (216); and Atlantis B 7th (154).   

Atlantis hopes that this gala will become an annual feature of the swimming calendar.  Its purpose is to introduce the club’s less experienced swimmers to competitive gala swimming and in this way to encourage a greater proportion of the club’s members to compete on a regular basis.  Other local Sussex and Surrey clubs are now building up a good programme of events targeted towards younger swimmers and Atlantis is keen to make its own contribution.

Craig Trusson said:  “I was delighted to support this event.  It was great to see so many people having so much fun on a Saturday night.  It beats Strictly Come Dancing!”.

Atlantis Deputy Head Coach Andy Lobley said: “This was a fantastic experience for our younger swimmers, many of whom have not swum in a competitive gala before or in front of such a large crowd and in such a fevered atmosphere.  I hope it will now give them the confidence to start competing on a more regular basis.  They certainly showed they all have the ability to do so”.