Thursday, August 24, 2023


Mackay and Whitsunday Life

Mackay Cyclone Athletes Smash PB’s

To Bring Home A Swag Of Medals

On the weekend of August 11-13, the Mackay Cyclones had nine athletes compete at the 2023 Hancock Prospecting Queensland Short Course Championships in Brisbane.

Over the course of the championships, the club achieved 26 top 10 spots, 50 out of 54 personal bests, five gold medals, three silver medals and two bronze.

Mackay Cyclones Swimming Club was given a ranking of 38th out of the 113 clubs in Queensland for the event.

It was some of the best results for the competing kids who trained hard in the lead up to these championships, their hard work achieving them some huge personal bests.

Coach of Mackay Cyclones Leigh-Anne Pokarier said all athletes stepped up to "next level racing ", as personal best times were not just beaten, they were smashed.

The team culminated everything that was worked on leading into the state event and put it on display to perfection.

Competing at the championships was Max Vernon, 15, 14-year-olds Jarek Taylor, Vaughn Wyatt, Mackenzie Neilson, Anneka O'Donnell and Izabella Wills, 12-year-olds Kaiden Neilsen and Jessica Britton and Dakota Daniel, 11.

Prior to the event, Izabella Wills had been informed of her selection for the Matt Levy Inclusive Futures Scholarship, one of five prestigious scholarships meaning she has been identified as a future talent for the Paralympic pathway.

Read on to find out how each swimmer finished.

Izabella Wills - S10 Multiclass swimmer

5 x Gold Medals (50m and 100m backstroke and 50m, 100m and 200m freestyle)

Kaiden Neilsen

1 x Silver Medal (400m freestyle, breaking the North Queensland record)

2 x Bronze Medals (200m freestyle, 200m individual medley)

Top 10 finishes in 200m backstroke (4th), 100m butterfly (5th), 100m backstroke (7th) and 50m backstroke (10th)

Mackenzie Neilsen

1 x Silver Medal (200m butterfly)

Top 10 finishes in 100m butterfly (5th) and 200m individual medley (9th)

Dakota Daniel (at her first ever state short course meet)

1 x Silver Medal (200m individual medley)

Top 10 finishes in 100m freestyle (6th), 400m freestyle (7th), 50m freestyle (8th), 100m butterfly (9th) and 200m freestyle (9th)

Jarek Taylor

Top 10 finishes in 200m backstroke (9th), 100m backstroke (10th) and 50m backstroke (10th)

Vaughn Wyatt

Top 10 finishes in 200m breaststroke (8th)

Contributed by Alisha Ness

Back row L-R Anneka O’Donnell, Max Vernon, Vaughn Wyatt, Coach Leigh-Anne Pokarier, Front row L-R Jessica Britton, Mackenzie Neilsen, Dakota Daniel, Kaiden Neilsen, Izabella Wills

Kaiden Neilsen

Mackenzie Neilsen

Dakota Daniel

Izabella Wills

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