Synchronised swimmers Kate Shortman and Isabelle Thorpe have enjoyed a hugely encouraging season.
They earned spots on the England Programmes Age Group training squad and won a comfortable gold medal at the Primorje Cup in Croatia, scoring 73.0667 for their free routine in the final.
The 14-year olds then travelled to the Mediterranean Cup in Ostia, Italy and impressed against some of the best young synchronised swimmers in Europe, finishing eighth in the Duet with a score of 73.6667 for their free routine in the final.
The pair were named ASA Engand Programmes synchronised swimmers of the year at the ASA Aquatics Awards in November, then completed a successful defence of their National Age Group title with a breathtaking routine in Gloucester this month, receiving 75.2667 from the judges for their free routine performance.
What has been your favourite memories from 2015?
Izzy: My favourite memories were being awarded England Programmes Athlete of the Year with Kate and competing with her at the Mediterranean Cup and finishing in eighth place.
Kate: Being named Athlete of the Year with Izzy, finishing eighth in the duet in the Mediterranean Cup in August and winning a silver medal for Solo in the Croatia Junior Open in June.
Tell us about your plans for the festive period
Izzy: I am going to see my family and spend some time not thinking about my sport but taking part in lots of other activities and squeezing in time to see my friends, go to the cinema and ice skating… I will also be doing the odd bit of training!!!
Kate: Catching up with my friends, sleepovers and spending time with my family in Wales.
What are you hoping to find under your Christmas tree?
Izzy: Hair straighteners and the obligatory swimming costume.
Kate: Aiden Turner……only joking! I’m hoping for lots of surprises including some Roshes, nice make-up and a Lindt father Christmas!
What’s your favourite part of Christmas dinner?
Izzy: I love all of the Christmas dinner. We are going to my aunties this year and she always has amazing puddings.
Kate: Being sat around the table with all my family.
Are you making any New Year’s resolutions?
Izzy: Not really. I have thought about making a few resolutions but I will continue to think about what they should be.
Kate: Wake up for early morning training with enthusiasm!
What are you looking forward to most in the year ahead?
Izzy: Competing in the senior and junior teams at the European Championships, if I am selected to the final eight athletes. I am also really looking forward to Kate and I competing for the final time at the Mediterranean Cup in Israel later on in 2016.
Kate: Being selected for the Age Group duet and improving our ranking at the Mediterranean Cup in Israel 2016. Also, hopefully competing in the Junior and Senior teams.