Nomads master Europe

Fareham Nomads swimmers, from left: Jo Corben, Claire Tagg, Noemie Peignon and Laura Molyneaux

Fareham Nomads swimmers, from left: Jo Corben, Claire Tagg, Noemie Peignon and Laura Molyneaux

Lucy Peers

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Fareham Nomads swimmers Jo Corben and John Molyneaux put on a masterclass at the recent European Masters Swimming Championships – winning five gold medals between them.

Dedicated Corben, 45, from Fareham, raced to victory in the 100m and 200m backstroke, setting world records in both events, and claimed fourth in the 50m backstroke in a new British record time for the 45-49 year age group.

Head coach Molyneaux, 28, from Portsmouth, was on fine form to claim all three backstroke titles in the 50m, 100m and 200m events for the 25-29 year age group at the London Aquatics Centre, in Stratford where the 2012 Olympics were held.

Team-mates Laura Molyneaux, Noemie Peignon, Tony Corben, Claire Tagg, Paul Rowan and Ian Dickson also competed in nine events between them at the prestigious masters event.

Assistant coach Stewart Crowe said: ‘A squad of eight Fareham Nomads Masters swimmers gave a masterclass of swimming at the recent European Masters Swimming Championships between May 25-30.

‘Fresh from their recent success at the British Masters Championship, at which they won 13 medals, the group were relishing the challenge of competing on the European stage.

‘For some this was the most important competition they had competed at since leaving the sport in their late teens some 10 years previously.’

Peignon achieved a personal best time of 1.09.05 in the 100m butterfly to come 10th in the 30–34 year age group, while Laura Molyneaux also set a best time in the same event placing 19th in the 25-29 year age group in a time of 1.10.57.

Tagg also set a new best of 3.06.18 in the 200m individual medley.

Triple European champion John Molyneaux recorded a time of 27.84 in the 50m backstroke, 59.96 in the 100m backstroke and 2.12.19 in the 200m backstroke, finishing just 0.32 ahead of a German swimmer.

World-class Nomads swimmer Corben set the British record in her weakest event of the 50m backstroke in a time of 32.99, before clinching gold medals and world records in the 100m backstroke in 1.07.75 and 200m backstroke in 2.24.06.

The latter event was the fastest time she had posted since 2002 and 15 seconds ahead of her closest rival.

‘A lot was expected of Jo and John as these swimmers were highly ranked in their respective events,’ said Crowe.

‘They had done the necessary work and now was the time to step up and display their class to the best of Europe.”

The last event was the ladies 4x50m Medley relay with Corben, Tagg, Peignon and Laura Molyneaux recording 2.16.80 to place 10th.

Crowe added: ‘The swimmers are an inspiration to all at the club, great to coach and will now look forward to the British Short Course Championships in October and next year’s World Championships which will be held in Budapest.’

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