FIVE debutants are among the 17 Swim Bournemouth athletes involved in the National Age Group Championships, which started in Sheffield yesterday, and the Youth Championships, which begin on Tuesday.
They include five youngsters who are swimming only in relays after the club qualified for five of the six team events.
The 17 include Commonwealth Games finalist Jay Lelliott, swimming for Bath University, and European junior breaststroke ace Jack Burton, competing for Plymouth Leander.
Backstroke specialist Ellie Kerslake also qualified but had to withdraw due to injury.
Eighteen qualifiers is Swim Bournemouth’s biggest contingent since the club was formed by the merger of Ferndown Otters and Bournemouth Dolphins four years ago.
As reported last week, 12 Poole swimmers and eight from Bournemouth Collegiate School are also involved.
In total, 36 swimmers from the Bournemouth/Poole area will take part in the age group and youth events over the next two weeks.
Swim Bournemouth qualifiers - Bell, Ethan, 13: Attending his first age group nationals as a member of Swim Bournemouth’s 4x100m and 4x200m freestyle relay teams.
Brain, Lucy, 15: The Dorset junior 800m freestyle record holder was 15 on July 28, making her one of the youngest swimmers at the youth championships, where she goes in the 400 and 800m freestyle . Despite the disadvantage of being at the youngest end of a two-year age band, she will be hoping for better fortune than last year, when she marked her nationals debut with disqualification for a false start in her only event.
Burton, Jack, 18: The Dorset breaststroke record-holder is hoping to make up for a disappointing European Junior Championships by winning gold in the 100 and 200m breaststroke and medley relay at the youth championships, where he will swim for Plymouth Leander.
Collins, Matt, 14: Hopes to improve on his 15th place in the 1500m free-style last year and also goes in the 4x100m and 4x200m freestyle relays.
Gray, Jamie, 18: Gray says a “semi-final would be nice” as he goes in the 50m backstroke at his third youth championships.
Green, Jemma, 14: After qualifying for her nationals debut by 0.01sec last year, the 2014 South West age group champion at 800m freestyle has qualified more comfortably for the 200 and 400m freestyle as well as all three girls’ relays.
Kerslake, Ellie, 18: Qualified for her second youth championships in the 50m backstroke but has been forced to withdrawn due to injury.
Leaper, Megan, 14: After swimming in the national schools relay finals in November, she heads for her first age group nationals as a member of the 4x100m and 4x200m freestyle teams.
Lelliott, Jay, 19: The Bath University student will arrive at the youth championships hotfoot from the Commonwealth Games but plans to drop his Glasgow event, the 1500m freestyle, from his program-me. Instead he will be looking for his first national medals in the 100, 200 and 400m freestyle, 100 and 200m backstroke and 200m butterfly.
Long, Morgan, 13: Attends her first nationals for the girls’ 4x100m freestyle relay.
Perfect, Harriet, 14: The former Seagull could be challenging for medals as she swims the 100 and 200m backstroke in her second nationals. She is also in the 4x100m medley and 4x200m freestyle teams at the age groups.
Pryce, Izzy, 13: Has missed two to three months’ training after a foot operation but is back for the medley relay at her second nationals.
Richens, Jess, 14: The former Poole swimmer qualifies for her second nationals in the 200m butterfly and 4x100m medley and freestyle relays.
Samuel, Ben, 13: Attending his second nationals for the 4x100m an 4x200m freestyle relays.
Stonier, Hannah, 13: The Dorset 12yrs Bagcats champion is attending her first nationals for the 4x200m freestyle relay.
Wong, Alan, 16: The former national age group champion goes in the 100 and 200m backstroke at his sixth consecutive nationals and is hoping to make the semi-finals.
Wong, Kelvin, 13: Alan’s cousin narrowly missed out on a final last year and is hoping to go one better in the 100 and 200m breaststroke at his second age group nationals, where he will also swim in Swim Bournemouth’s 4x100m and 4x200m freestyle reams.
Young, Jordan, 16: The distance specialist, who also swims for East Dorset Open Water SC, makes his nationals debut in the 2km at the youth open water championships at Rother Valley, near Sheffield, on August 3.