Four members of the Gander Lakers swim team competed in the Canada Games in Winnipeg, with one setting a new provincial record. Left to right are: Zac Davidge, Melissa Brown, Ewan MacLean and Nick Rowsell.
GANDER, NL – A provincial record that was held for 24 years was recently broken by Gander swimmer Ewan MacLean.
The 14-year-old was one of four Gander Lakers who participated at the Canada Games in Winnipeg from July 28-Aug. 13.
During a 200-metre back crawl swim, also known as the backstroke, he recorded a time of two minutes and 20.6 seconds.
According to coach Tim Rowsell, the old record in his age group was set in 1993, at a time of two minutes and 21.19 seconds.
Rowsell said he couldn’t contain his excitement during Ewan’s record-setting preliminary race swim.
“Even though he finished seventh in the heat, I was jumping up and down anyway because I knew he had broken the record,” said Rowsell.
“This was a goal that Ewan and myself, as his coach, had set. He had attempted it at Champs, which was the Canada Games selection, and we were close, so with the adrenaline of the competition in Winnipeg, I was pretty confident he could do it.”
Rowsell is also extremely proud of the effort of the Lakers swimmers – MacLean, Nick Rowsell, Zac Davidge and Melissa Brown – given the hurdles the team had faced in the year leading up to the Canada Games.
Their hometown pool was closed for repairs during peak training time and the young athletes had to travel extensively to Grand Falls-Windsor, St. John’s and Mount Pearl for months on end.
“It was almost all personal best times,” said coach Rowsell of the Canada Games showing. “To me it’s very rewarding to see these (young athletes) obtain these personal achievements.”