The University of Limerick became a hub of vibrant activity as it hosted the season’s inaugural Short Course Gala. For many swimmers, this was their maiden plunge into the short course format this season, adding an extra layer of anticipation to the atmosphere.

The day wasn’t just about cutting through the water. It was about marking a new beginning, setting benchmarks, and navigating new challenges. The very essence of the short course format – rapid turns and speedier laps – was new terrain for many.

Recognition was in the air as the cherished ‘Munster Bands’ trophies were presented across all strokes. Even more noteworthy was the announcement that the top twenty in each category had made the cut. These honours serve as a motivation, pushing swimmers to elevate their game as the season progresses.

It was a moment of collective pride as our local talents shone brightly, registering numerous personal bests (PBs). Their feats were a vivid display of determination and the will to embrace and conquer new formats.

Events of such scale owe their success to the many hands and hearts working tirelessly behind the scenes. A standing ovation is due to the team managers, officials, and the pillars of support – the parents. Their involvement, spanning from meticulous planning to fervent cheering, was the backbone of this gala.

As the first Aspiring Short Course Gala at UL concluded, it laid down a promising foundation for the upcoming season. If this event was a sign of things to come, both swimmers and enthusiasts are in for an exhilarating journey ahead.