Emma Do Swimmingly In Cuppers

Emma won last weekend’s swimming cuppers, beating fierce competition from Downing and Catz.

Blues Catz Cuppers downing emma emmanuel johns leys school penguins pool st johns swimming

Emmanuel College managed to see off stiff competition to take first place in this year’s swimming cuppers last weekend at The Leys School Pool.

Two rounds of heats on Friday evening and Saturday afternoon were followed by a finals session on Sunday when the eight fastest swimmers battled it out for victory. Blues swimmers were excluded from the individual events, but were able to compete in relays to allow for a more level playing field.

The atmosphere at the heats on Friday evening was electric, with Catz bringing more supporters than swimmers. Emma demonstrated their speed early on, finishing in the top three positions in the majority of their qualifying races. The John’s Penguins won in both their butterfly swims, while Catz were on form in the medley and breastroke. The Downing dream team (which includes three men’s Blues swimmers) faced an embarrassing shock defeat in both their relays, losing in both the medley and freestyle, to John’s and Christ’s respectively.

The standard in the second day of heats was generally lower, though Girton and Trinity both had a number of strong swims. The female swimmers from Girton in particular led the way in a number of individual and relay events.

Going into the final, the favourites from the heats – coincidentally with the big names from the Blues team – were Emmanuel, Downing, John’s and Catz. Downing started strongly, taking the women’s medley event, while Catz won the men’s. Catz went on to take the women’s backstroke and breastroke, but failure to qualify in a number of the men’s events put them at a severe disadvantage in the overall table.

While some of Saturday’s talent was missing, the Girton girls still managed to put up a good fight, winning the butterfly and freestyle events. The individual swims from the Downing team were unimpressive, with the exception of a win in the men’s breastroke. The John’s Penguins, however, came in the top three of all the men’s individual events, while Emma swung between placing first in the men’s backstroke and freestyle, and last, in the butterfly.

Emma were first going into the relays, with Downing second and Catz third. Overcoming a poor first round performance, the Downing men stayed long and strong, taking both men’s relays with ease. John’s came in second with Emma close behind. Catz won both the women’s events, while Emma finished second.

John’s stole the men’s title from self-proclaimed ‘traditional’ winners Downing, while Catz topped the podium for the women. But it was Emmanuel who took the overall title, the depth of their squad securing victory in this closely fought competition.