Making a splash at the ISST Swimming Championships
Last weekend saw the return of ISSTs, and this year’s swimming championships took place, for the first time, in our very own Aquatic & Fitness Center. Read on to learn more about the events that took place last Friday and Saturday.
The ISST swimming championships is the last meet of the winter season, and is a key opportunity for student athletes to compete one last time—reflecting on their hard work and sportsmanship over the school year so far. Alongside our ASL swimmers, eight visiting teams from Europe participated in events over the weekend. ISSTs have been taking place at the end of each for more than 50 years. It’s not easy to coordinate an event involving nine international teams, but the result last weekend was electric. The Aquatic & Fitness Center, Farmer Family Gymnasium and Blue Gym were buzzing with visiting students from all over Europe—Brussels, Frankfurt, Zurich, Vienna, Munich and Paris.
Friday prelims and finals: 200m freestyle, 100m breaststroke,100m butterfly, 50m freestyle, 4x50m medley relay
Saturday prelims and finals: 4x50m mixed medley relay, 100m freestyle, 200m individual medley,100m backstroke, 4x50m freestyle relay
Owing to recent changes, teams now comprise varsity athletes only, age 14-18. Next year’s ISST swimming championship will see only high school swimmers taking part, so this is the final year that Grade 8 swimmers may take part.
The weekend’s events provided the student athletes with an opportunity to mix with others from schools in Europe, with the common interest of swimming. It’s not all about competition; the tournament provided a chance for swimmers to make new friends and reflect on their sportsmanship and hard work in training. In addition, taking on the role of host allowed ASL to show off our first-class facilities!
The swimming ISSTs was a rewarding experience for the ASL athletics department, including Apostolos Mitrakos, head swim coach and swim coordinator, and John Farmer, athletics director. Planned from scratch in November, ISSTs took four months to put together, with our in-house security, catering, athletics and facilities teams all playing an integral role in the event’s success. After finishing second overall last weekend, ASL is over the moon!
“Our ASL swimmers should be very proud of themselves for their accomplishments over the weekend.”
—Apostolos Mitrakos, ASL head swim coach
The energy and atmosphere poolside during swim categories and at the awards ceremony were described by Apostolos as unique. Hosting such an event, while a challenge, was an honor for our school. Around 200 onlookers filled the bleachers to cheer on the swimmers. Students, families, and supporters of visiting teams gave a standing ovation following speeches by John and Apostolos. We are ecstatic to announce that ASL will be hosting again next year. Bring it on!
Take a look at some photos of the action over the weekend.