SIT down with 12-year-old Leon Seaton, strike up a conversation about swimming, and you will learn that this is one young man who is very passionate, and very confident about being a swimmer.“I just love the competition,” said the North Georgetown Secondary School first form student, as he gazed attentively across the pool of the National Aquatic Centre.“I feel fit, and it helps me in my education in some ways, and it’s a good stress relieving outlet for me I would say.”Seaton’s love for the sport, backed by his hard work and capable skills, has now helped to craft him into one of Guyana’s current top junior swimmer.“It hasn’t been easy. Since primary school, I’ve been waking up in the morning, going to swim, then school, then coming back to swim, I would go home, do my homework, and then have to be in bed. Some mornings I don’t come to the pool because I didn’t finish my homework, so it’s been a bit of a rough path for me during my time as a swimmer,” Seaton revealed.But the hard work has not been without its fruits. With regard to the sport locally, Seaton has a notable track record for his age. In his seven years thus far as a competitive swimmer, Seaton is a Goodwill Swimming Championship multiple silver medallist and a National Schools Championship multiple gold medallist. He also secured medals at the invitational meets in Barbados, Suriname and Trinidad and Tobago.Although the Guyana Amateur Swimming Association (GASA) has no up to date records, Seaton has held multiple national age group records for the Boys’ 11 to 12 category, while he had also set a few in the Under-8, and 9 to 10 age group categories.Seaton’s began swimmimg back in 2009, at age five, after his parents believed he needed some extra curricular activity to keep him busy.Seaton is very delighted with the accomplishments he has made in the pool, but he’s unabashed to recollect how hard it was for him when he first started out, he even laughs about it.“At first it was painful, well I was five. In my first competition I jumped overboard, and I started to cry, because I wasn’t that confident as yet. But as years went by, I’ve built that confidence, and here I am now today swimming for Guyana,” he said.Seaton is still brimming with pride for being the only Guyanese swimmer to date to qualify for this year’s CARIFTA Swimming Championships, set for the Bahamas in April.Seaton credits this accomplishment to all his coaches who have been a part of his development.This will be Seaton’s first year attending the regional age group meet, where hundreds of swimmers from 26 countries are set to participate.Seaton clocked a fated 27.97 seconds to make it in the Boys’ 11-12 50m freestyle, not far off the 26 seconds record for the event at CARIFTA.Last year this event was won at CARIFTA in a time of 27.07 seconds.
× COLLECTING COSTUMES — The Horace Mann Cleaner and Greener Club is off to a great start collecting children’s Halloween costumes for JerseyCares. This is the first of many projects to promote kindness and respect, not only in our school, but also in our community! In December we will be collecting gently used winter coats to help keep everyone warm this winter.