A pair off clubs located in the northern metro area of Charlotte, North Carolina have announced a merger. Sailfish Aquatics and NOMAD Aquatics have merged and will progress under the Sailfish banner.
The pre-merger Sailfish club previously trained out of 4 sites, most notably the 50 meter pool at the Huntersville Family Fitness & Aquatics facility. They will lose access to that pool as of August 31, 2019, however, after SwimMAC Carolina signed an exclusive 7-year, $5.4 million deal to use that facility earlier this year.
NOMAD, meanwhile, trains out of their own NOMAD Aquatics & Fitness facility also in Huntersville. That facility includes a 25-yard by 25-meter, 10-lane competition pool, as well as a 20-yard by 30-foot instructional pool and several other supporting facilities – including fitness equipment and a yoga studio.
Sailfish head coach and CEO Hubert Williams will continue in the role of CEO of the combined club, while Mark Minier from NOMAD will serve as the Director of Swimming Operations.
“We are very excited to bring the two families together,” Williams said. “It will not only give us a stable practice facility and the ability to expand our team, but also a location in Huntersville where we can host competitions for our members and guest teams.”
“We can’t wait to compete as one team,” said Minier of the combination. “Bringing the rich history of NOMAD together with Sailfish Aquatics enhances our ability to build a program focused on developing student athletes and serving the community. We look forward to the opportunities that blending our families will produce.”
Sailfish finished 20th as a team at the recent North Carolina Swimming Senior Championships and 15th at the North Carolina Age Group Championships. NOMAD didn’t participate in the senior championships, but took 29th in combined team scoring at the age group championships.
Both teams bring young talent to the newly-combined venture. From Sailfish, that includes a pair of impressive 14-year old boys: Matthew Lucky and Blake Johnson. Lucky won the 100 breaststroke (57.27), 200 breaststroke (2:03.03), and 200 IM (1:52.72), and was 2nd in the 200 back and 100 fly, at the North Carolina Age Group Championships. He’s the North Carolina Swimming 13-14 record breaker in the 100 breaststroke with a 56.73. Johnson was 5th at that same meet in the 100 breaststroke.
Sailfish is the larger of the two pre-merger entities, and upon combination the team is expected to start with around 600 swimmers.
In the last few years, North Carolina has seen quite a few mergers and partnerships. That includes a 2015 pairing of the YMCA Tyde and the YWCA Sea Dragons and the 2017 merger of Team Charlotte Swimimng & Stingrays Aquatics in North Carolina.