Viking Swimmers enjoying yet another great season

IT IS proving a huge year for Viking Swimmers Special Olympics Club.

Established in September of 1999 by Regina Curley, the club is based in Tallaght Leisure Centre and currently caters for approximately 30 members of varied abilities.

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Under the guidance of Head Coach Eileen Conway and coaches/volunteers Betty Whelan, Gerry Buggy, Shauna Conway and Daniel Wynne, club members made their presence felt in the recent Special Olympics Ireland Games and the club will also be represented at the World Down Syndrome Swimming Championships in Nova Scotia, Canada, this month.

“The recent Games were magical,” recalled Head Coach Conway. “We had six athletes who qualified, four of those for the pool and two for open water.

“In total they brought home nine gold medals, four silver, three bronze, one fourth and two participation ribbons between them. As a club, we are so incredibly proud of them.

“The atmosphere at the Games was electric and in particular the team spirit between the coaches, chaperones and athletes was second to none,” she added.

The club will now be hoping that some of their own members are selected for the Special Olympics World Games which will be taking place in Abu Dhabi in Spring.

For sure they will boast two members, Maeve Phillips and Eoin Tully, on the Team Ireland squad heading to the World Down Syndrome Swimming Championships.

“We are now on our summer holidays, but once September comes we will start training for the leagues held between other Special Olympics clubs and services,” explained Conway.

Team spirit and comradery

“The athletes really enjoy getting together for their training sessions, competitions and social events as there is always a great sense of team spirit and comradery within the club.

“The coaches and volunteers strive to create a friendly atmosphere that not only encourages the athletes to improve on their sportsmanship, but also their interpersonal skills.

“We are always looking for new athletes to join our team, but we need more volunteers to facilitate  this.

“It’s simple to get involved. Firstly, visit here to register as a volunteer to register as a volunteer. Mention that you are interested in joining our club and you will be redirected to us,” she explained.

On behalf of Viking Swimmers, Conway would like to thank Jennifer Hughes (Eastern Region’s Head Coach) for all her hard work.

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