The iconic Rottnest Channel Swim celebrated 30 years last weekend, and Swimming Australia was on hand in Western Australia to help celebrate.
Hailing from 14 different countries, a total of 2,500 swimmers took part in the 19.7km swim, including 500 solo entrants – a huge number considering there was only 16 when the swim begun 30 years ago.
Starting at Cottlesloe beach and making their way to the end destination, Rottnest Island, competitors can take on the crossing solo, in a duo or as part of a relay team.
President of the Rottnest Channel Swim Association, Iain McCarrey said the event always sells out within hours of opening and is a “bucket list” for many swimmers.
“This event really is a bucket list swim for many people, with 50 per cent of swimmers in the 2020 crossing race being new swimmers,” he said.
Echoing McCarrey’s sentiments, the founder of Swimming Women, Charlotte O'Beirne, said there’s something “magical” about Rottnest.
“When you get to the finish it’s dark and magical on approach and you see the sea grass and then touching the sand feels like nothing else,” she said.
“The smell of Rottnest is nowhere else on earth and so special."
The Solo Title went to Zoe Whitfield in a time of 4:48:09.33, just beating local champs Josie Page (4:48:42.11) and last year's winner, Jaime Bowler (4:55:49.55).
The male Solo Title went to Dutchman Lars Bottelier in a time of 4:18.26.02, overcoming local champs Will Rollo and Kyle Lee to take out the title.
The Teams Swim was won by Aqua Profonda in a time of 4:07:59.61 and consisted of Australian Dolphins Sam Sheppard, David McKeon, Wally Eggleton and Jarrod Poort.
Other winners included:
Duos Male: Brad and Jack, Bradley Smith and Jack Wilson (4:24:52.28)
Duos Female: Team SABA – half the distance twice the fun, Natalie Woolfitt and Laura Shyrock (4:54:36.39)
Mixed Duos: Celtic Duo, Nigel Fanning and Aisha Thornton (4:45:09.19)
Congratulations to all the swimmers, paddlers, skippers, volunteers and race committee on a wonderful event.
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