Blacktown City Swimming Club kicked off the 2017-18 long course season with team success in the Nepean Aquatic Centre Open Water Swim at Penrith Regatta Centre last week.
Around 180 swimmers participated in swims across the 2.5km and 5km distances with age groups ranging from 10 to open age.
Club president Richard Galea said it was a great result to start the season.
“I’d say it was no fluke that we won because we put the preparation in and we also entered a large team into the event,” Mr Galea said.
“It was well planned from our point of view and we put in the effort and reaped the rewards.”
For four weeks before the competition, the club took swimmers up to the regatta centre for two hours each week for training.
Three-time Australian open water champion Wally Eggleton also came in to give the kids some tips for open water swimming.
With all the work put in and the results on the board, Blacktown was the top point scoring club for the event, winning $1000 in prize money.
In individual performances, Petar Karadojov took out the 10-year-old boys 2.5km swim and finished second overall in the 10-14 year age group.
Matthew Galea was also the under-15s boys 5km champion from the day and sixth overall.
Mr Galea has also welcomed the growth of open water swimming and the opportunities it provides.
“If you have a look at the Swimming NSW and Swimming Australia websites, there is a lot more focus on open water,” Mr Galea said.
“Swimming Australia has now gotten more involved in it and there will be some swim meets at various points in Sydney Harbour over summer. We’ll even be taking some kids to do the Bondi to Bronte swim.”
Blacktown City Swimming Club has been around since 1961 but four years ago was on the verge of closing.
Based at Blacktown Aquatic Centre, the club has quickly returned to 250 members, welcoming 30 per cent growth this year.
With state championships for open water and junior long course set for December, the club has started the season with a win.