HUNTINGDON Piranha Ryan Skeels made it to the semi-finals of the national championships, setting a personal best on the way.

HUNTINGDON Piranha Ryan Skeels made it to the semi-finals of the national championships, setting a personal best on the way.

Skeels was one of 42 swimmers to qualify for the 50m freestyle at the ASA British Gas Youth Nationals 2010 held in Sheffield, and the first Piranha to qualify in more than 10 years.

He progressed through his heat comfortably, leading from start to finish to win in a time of 25.07secs. He then bettered his time in the semi-final with a personal best of 24.91secs, finishing in eighth position in his race, and 16th in the overall timings.

Skeels has already had a season to remember after picking up a bronze in the 50m freestyle and sixth in the 50m butterfly at the ASA East Region Youth Championships in Norwich in May. He is also the Cambridgeshire county champion in five events: the 50m and 100m freestyle, the 50m and 100m backstroke and the 50m butterfly.

Head coach John Richards said: "This was a great achievement for Ryan and for the club. It is over 10 years since a club swimmer achieved a national qualifying time.

"Ryan is now training for the Winter ASA East Region Championships in November, where he is currently the second fastest 50m freestyle swimmer in his age group."