23 Aug 2011

Isle of Wight Marlins Swim Club Sandown to Shanklin “Pier to Pier” Swim 2011

2011 news Comments Off on Isle of Wight Marlins Swim Club Sandown to Shanklin “Pier to Pier” Swim 2011

Final Overall Results 2011

Final Results Female Year Groups 2011

Final Results Male Year Groups 2011

Final Results Overall Year Groups 2011

Trophies Winners and Clubs 2011

The 59th Sandown to Shanklin Sea Swim organised by the Isle of Wight Marlins Swim Club as part of Shanklin Regatta took place for the first time in its history on a Saturday this year.  It was held on 13th August 2011.  The main organisers were Gordon Osborne and Nancy Godwin assisted by a team from the club and local residents.

The day dawned very overcast after a night of near torrential rain and with the promise of high winds.  After the experience of the swim of 2008 which was cancelled due to such promises and the Shanklin Deep Sea Angling Club unable to launch their boats, a contingency plan was put in place to run a race over half the distance which would have been held in two parts of men’s’ race first followed by the ladies’ race.  However by 9.00am the sky had changed to a beautiful blue and the winds had failed to keep their promise to blow leaving us with near perfect conditions once again in which to hold the race.  This year there was a record number of entrants with the first maximum number of places being filled within the first two weeks and a further 40 entrants on a waiting list. The swim took place on the weekend between Sandown Regatta and Shanklin Regatta which meant that it attracted a substantial number of spectators at both the start and the finish.  We had 117 swimmers start the race and all but one successfully finished. This swimmer was pulled out of the water on the approach to Shanklin feeling tired and cold and was rushed to the finish line by Sandown Lifeboat, treated by the Red Cross for mild hypothermia and later released.  To avoid congestion at the first turning mark, the men started first but this year they were only 1 minute ahead of the ladies which added to the excitement of the competition with the ladies hot on the men’s’ tails.

The first swimmer to complete the 1¾ mile course and land at Shanklin Rowing club, near where the old Shanklin Pier used to stand, was Ben Pennington of Spencer Swim Team in a time of 29 minutes 57seconds.  Last year Ben was narrowly beaten by Peter Dixon in an exciting finish where Ben tripped up in the run up the beach to the finishing line.  This year, however, Ben stamped his authority by winning the race nearly two minutes ahead of the second place swimmer.  Unfortunately for Peter history repeated itself and he again had a battle in a run up the beach narrowly missing second place by a mere second to Gavin Barlow of Spencer Swim Team. The first lady was Katie Butcher, of Arundel Trinity, who crossed the line in a time of 33mins 28secs.  The first  Island Lady to finish was Amy Rickards in a time of 36 minutes 44 seconds and first Island man to finish was Gary Kurth in a time of 32 minutes 40 seconds which was a spectacular 2 minutes faster that his time for last year and 5 minutes faster than his time of two years ago.  This year Gary was a casualty of the fast return of entry forms making him well down on the waiting list and seemingly without a swim.  However with some very late cancellations it was possible to offer Gary a place only the day before the swim which he accepted and then went on to complete a great swim.   The oldest competitor taking part was Raymond Blount of Eastbourne Swimming Club aged 76 and he finished in a time of 49 minutes 20 seconds.  Raymond only just claimed this prize by being older than Terry Lyons of Richmond Swimming Club by just 4 months.   The 116th and last swimmer safely made the finish line in 63 minutes 40 seconds.  On finishing all swimmers were given hot soup, a bread roll which was kindly provided by the ladies of Shanklin Rowing Club.

This year we had the added interest of John Clark’s 50th birthday celebration.  John, who is a member of the London Polytechnic Water Polo team, had actually reached his 50th birthday a month before but decided that the sea swim offered the perfect backdrop for a weekend of celebrations which included a beach party near the finish line of the race and featured music from local singer Derek Sandy making a fun time for all.

Safety support for the swim was provided by Sandown Lifeboat who acted as the control boat, the Shanklin Deep Sea Angling Club with 10 boats and close swimmer support was provided by 24 local Kayakers led by Adrian Brown.  The British Red Cross were in attendance but their services were only required for one minor case of medical assistance.  To all of these groups we send our grateful thanks.

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