Rydal Penrhos pupils in the swim

The school’s swimming squad travelled to Cardiff to compete at the Urdd National Gala and came away with medals

Leading the way for Rydal Penrhos School’s swimmers at the Urdd National Gala was Year 10 pupil Zach Speakman, who enhanced his growing reputation with two podium finishes in his individual events.

The Swim Wales star, who recently received a call-up for the prestigious Golden Tour, claimed gold from the 200m individual medley in a time of 2:24.13 and swiftly followed this up with a silver in the 100m butterfly in 1:01.34.

Other performances of note came from Cameron Show, Samiya Garrod, John Williams, Mollie Smithfield, Osca Clark, Ksenia Kotelnikova and Lennart Paulsen, who all finished just outside the top three.

There was further cause for celebration in the form of the girls’ freestyle relay team of Smithfield, Garrod, Kotelnikova and Mia Cole, who produced a fantastic effort under pressure to secure a silver medal from the event.

Zach Speakman after winning gold

Lennart, Garrod, Smithfield and Luca Leggieri finished fourth in the mixed relay race, while the boys’ freestyle relay team of Speakman, Show, Josh Manning and Tom Hughes came fifth after a highly competitive final.

Head of Swimming Maciej Ruszkowski, said: “This was another very strong overall performance from the group, and they should all be very proud of their fantastic achievements.

“Zach once again proved why he is one of the best swimmers in the country with another outstanding level of performance, and I am also hugely proud of Samiya, Mollie, Mia and Ksenia for managing to bring home a medal.

“We have a rich tradition of success in this competition and there was plenty to indicate that this is going to continue long into the future.”

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