Swimmers set to shine at British Championships

Amberley Hoar will compete in both the 100m backstroke and 100m breaststroke
Amberley Hoar will compete in both the 100m backstroke and 100m breaststroke
Kate Steels-Fryatt in action  Picture: Terry Scott

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The British Swimming Championships begin tomorrow, with the area’s finest pool talent looking to shine in Manchester.

Portsmouth Northsea send their dynamic duo into action as both Neil Redman and Amberley Hoar look to make an impression.

And the city’s golden girl, Katy Sexton, will be hoping to be competitive as she goes in all three of the backstroke events.

World champion and current world-record holder Gemma Spofforth will be expecting to reign supreme in the 100m and 200m backstroke.

The former Portsmouth High School student has been gearing up for the championships in Australia as she looks towards retaining her world crown later this year.

Northsea will look to Redman to continue the hurtling strides he is making.

The 16-year-old will be hoping to hit a time which will allow him to make the European Junior Championships when he swims in the 200m breaststroke.

Redman has already got national experience under his belt and will be looking to build on the records he has already set at county and regional level.

Hoar – The News Sports Awards 2010 outstanding contributor to disabled sport winner – will be aiming for selection for the German Open later this year, when the disability swimmer competes in both the 100m backstroke and 100m breaststroke.

She has stepped up to the premier Northsea swim squad and preparations have gone well ahead of the meet.

Her long-term goal will be focused at making it to next year’s Olympics on home soil in London.

Northsea head coach Paul Hogg is hopeful both will swim to the best of their abilities.

Hogg said: ‘Amberley has been looking good and will be looking to swim fast enough to get the qualifying time for Germany.

‘She’s just recently switched to our top squad and has looked good in the water.

‘Obviously, her long-term goal will be looking to 2012 and the Olympics.

‘Neil will be looking to make the European Juniors.

‘He has made massive strides this season and is in with a shout.

‘Neil came to us in 2009 and has made good progress in that time.

‘We are looking for them to go there and do as well as they possibly can.’

Sexton’s season is gearing up for the championships as she bids to build up her work after a hiatus from the sport.

Injuries saw a break from swimming enforced on her – and the former world champion feels that has been a big benefit.

Her aim is to make it to a final at the event as she looks to create some momentum.

Sexton said: ‘I’m going there and just going to see what happens.

‘I’ve swam the times to get there, so I’m going to go there with an open mind.

‘If I was to make a final I’d be happy.

‘I’m still swimming reasonable times, it’s about keeping the scales balanced.’