Three swimmers from the Able2 Pontefract Special Olympics team have been crowned national champions.
Sarah Shutt, 40, of Featherstone, Thomas Raddings, 16, of Ackworth, and Oliver Peace, 22, of Upton competed as part of the Yorkshire ASTRA5 squad at the 2014 National Halliwick Swimming Championships, having qualified at the Yorkshire Regional Competition back in May.
The National Championships were held at Sevenoaks Leisure Centre, Kent on Saturday and saw Thomas give the team a great start by winning his first ever national swimming title with a gold medal in the boys’ 25m race.
This was quickly followed by his second title in the boys’ 50m race where he claimed the Keyhaven Cup.
Sarah won gold in the ladies’ 50m, taking the Olive Lee Memorial Cup which she had previously won in 2012.
Oliver took gold in the men’s 25m event and was awarded the London Transport Revenue Trophy for the third time, regaining his UK title won in 2011 and 2012. He was just pipped at the finish in the men’s 100m race and collected the silver medal.
In the senior relay event, Sarah and Oliver were members of the team finishing in bronze medal position.
With an array of medals and cups awarded to the 10 members of the ASTRA5 Yorkshire team, the squad was also presented with the Barnardo Trophy as overall champions for the third year in a row.
ASTRA5 team manager Debbie Malton said: “A big thank you goes to the Able2 swimmers, we wouldn’t have won without them; they were fantastic!”
The success at the championships continued a glittering year of success for Able2 Pontefract Special Olympics.
This year Sarah also became a national champion in athletics and was awarded the Disability Sports Yorkshire Sportswoman of the Year trophy in September.
Thomas was presented with a Yorkshire Children of Courage award for his swimming and his school work.
Oliver’s national swimming title is his fourth national title during 2014, having also won championships in table tennis, athletics and equestrian (dressage) as well as earning the title Disability Sports Yorkshire Sportsman of the Year.
Pontefract Special Olympics, formed in April 2009, is an associate Club of Special Olympics Great Britain and offers coaching and competitive opportunities in sport for people with learning disabilities. For details, contact chairman Steve Peace on 07551 648661.