Local swimmer Jesse Shade cuts through the water.

Killer Whales throwing Shade at the competition

Local swimmer Jesse Shade is leading the wave of Campbell River Killer Whales through their long course season after some recent success at the regional qualifying meet for Special Olympics.

Shade finished first in all six of his events, which earns him an invitation to the provincial championships. He is a strong favourite to make it through that championship and on to the National Championships where he will face some tough competition in his attempt to earn the right to represent Canada in the future.

The remainder of the squad are two events into long course season – where the young athletes change their focus from a 25 meter pool to the Olympic size 50 meter pool – and have had strong showings thus far, as well, breaking eight club individual records and five club relay records so far.

Individual record breakers included Cianna Dunn, Kaya Lathangue, Brooke Wenger and Summer Wenger. Additional swimmers who contributed to the club relay records were Martina Montana, Ava Simard, Aleah Jordan, Melayna Beaudin and Jamiliya Wellard.

The Killer Whales also had swimmers showing an affinity to the longer pool qualifying for their next level of swim meets with Maria Fernanda Villarroel qualifying for the Vancouver Island Regionals. Ava Simard and Martina Montana both achieved their first “AA” provincial Standard. Carson Dunn and Ali Beck raced to their first “AAA” provincial standard with Beck also qualifying for the Western National Championships held next February.

Coach Jim Campbell looks forward to seeing the progress continue at the Island Medley Challenge meet, happening from May 20 to 22 in Victoria.