Swimming Western Australia
Published: Mar 19, 2013 04:33:16 PM Updated: Mar 19, 2013 05:32:22 PM
The closing round of the 2012/13 Swimming WA Open Water Swim Series at Mullaloo Beach saw UWA’s duo Paul Laver and Sacha Downing retain their existing series lead and clinch the title of 2012/13 Series Champions. Both Laver and Downing needed to win their events to secure the overall series title and a prize of $500 cash and two tickets to the 2013 Swimming WA Swimmer of the Year Awards.
Saturday’s round was not the first time Laver and Downing had tasted success together, the pair claiming victory in the hotly contested season opening 5km event at Cottesloe Beach in October.
After finishing painfully close behind last year’s series winner and teammate Rhys Mainstone, Laver blitzed the field in the men’s 2.5km race to take top points and the title for the first time.
The seasoned open water swimmer powered through two laps of the course, facing choppy conditions on the return, however remained in control of the race he called a training session.
“Today was a good training session for a few swims I have coming up. Firstly Albany in a couple of weeks time, and then Surf Life Saving State and National Titles before heading over to France for a 5km in June”, Laver said.
“It’s good to finish with a win and to take out the series”.
Despite a busy schedule that includes preparation for the upcoming Australian Open and Australian Age Championships over east, Laver’s training partner Downing still managed to attend all eight rounds and assert her dominance over the series.
Having only attempted open water swimming in 2011, Downing is quickly making a name for herself on the Australian open water circuit. The young gun opted to swim the shorter 1.25km distance as she it was back to the pool for a competition after finishing.
“It was a really good short swim today. I wanted to get some points and hopefully stay in the lead”, Downing said.
“It has been very important for me to swim in all eight rounds as I went into last year’s nationals having only done two open water swims and feeling very unprepared”.
“After these rounds I have a lot more experience and I’m feeling confident with my swimming”.
Runners up to Laver and Downing are World Championship contender Simon Huitenga and London Olympian Heidi Gan who each received $250 cash and one ticket the 2013 Swimming WA Swimmer of the Year Awards
Rounding out the series leaderboard in third place are Fabrice Lincoln and Karla Goy who took home $100 cash and one ticket the 2013 Swimming WA Swimmer of the Year Awards.
A full list of results can be found here.
Photos from the Round 1 – 7 of the 2012/13 Open Water Series are available at www.modoiview.com.