There was such a wealth of races undertaken that to squeeze all the reports into one Round Up would diminish some incredible individual performances over the weekend. So this is the first instalment which co-incidentally covers a lot of swim mileage in the sea and canals:-
ROUND HILL ROMP
Race eight in the West Sussex Fun Run league; the Round Hill Romp is a 6 mile run starting on Steyning High Street before the ascent of the Downs – up the steep side. The lovely warm evening attracted 548 finishers, amongst them 11 Tuffs. Some were sporting their running club vests and the first Tuff home was Henry Teague-Smith, 10th overall in a very quick 38:30. Chris Sloggett was next home followed by Sue Neilson, Linda Wright, Tony Pearce, Michael Redgrave, Elle Williams, Clare Worgan, Rachel Brunning, Nicole Ewer & Elaine Rousseau.
PADDLE ROUND THE PIER FESTIVAL
The Paddle Round the Pier Festival had a wide variety of events & distances and there was a great result in the Sea lanes Challenge 3.8km Swim, where Paul Howie participated. He stroked home 4th overall just a few seconds off 2nd position. Another race was the SwimTrek Swim round the Pier 1.5km and here, one of our newest members, Andy Tester, was, 2nd in the wetsuit category.
DUTCH WEERRIBBEN SWIM EXPERIENCE
Susan Douglas, our specialist in seeking out unusual swim venues, has returned from her latest adventure:-
“I’ve been to Holland, although I nearly didn’t go as the swim organisation was very poor and although I’d paid last July (against my better judgement but others were enthusiastic) I didn’t know where I was staying or the exact location of the swim until 3 days before!”
“Anyway the swim started at 7pm in Kalenberg a small watery village about an hour from Amsterdam. Very picturesque with canals instead of streets and the weather was sunny and warm.”
“We plopped into the canal for the start, not a huge field and fairly laid back. The course took a route up the canal then a left turn into a narrow dike, leading on to other even narrower and shallower dikes, at times it was more akin to bog snorkelling! If you’re a person who freaks out when something touches you, then this swim is not for you, several times I thought another swimmer was touching my feet, to find no one there, a giant fish perhaps or an eel or maybe all the reeds and lily pads were out to get me. There may have been lots of vegetation but at least there was no rubbish. After several left turns and about 5k the route returned to the original main canal and where we started. It was fun and an experience. Afterwards my bikini was full of black silt, it was pretty grim, but clean dirt I suppose. “
THE BANTAM SWOOSH
Ross Malyon hasn’t been to many club sessions following surgery but has been slowly getting back to fitness and reports in from undertaking his first long swim.
“Last weekend I did my first ever distance swim (6km down the River Avon in Devon) as part of the Outdoor Swimming Society’s event, The Bantham Swoosh. I’d never swum this distance before, but I had been training regularly in the pool in Worthing plus some longer swims when I had the chance. I only managed to fit in an outdoor training swim before the event in the lake at Chichester Watersports, so I had a game plan.”
“We drove down to the campsite through the Friday afternoon exodus and finally arrived at about 9pm the night before the event.”
“In the morning I was greeted by a beautiful early morning view of the mouth of the estuary and after a light breakfast I set off on foot to the start of the swim in Aveton Gifford by foot (a nice 3km stroll as a warm up). after a 10 min walk I was offered a lift from some other swimmers and I arrived rested and ready.”
“The registration, organisation, briefing was really well done, but I had an hour and a half to chill in some glorious summer weather and chat to some of the other attendees. 20 mins before the start (at 9:20am) I finally got suited up, dropped my bag off and made my way with the other 800 swimmers to the start.”
“I’d decided to start near the back as I wanted to start leisurely and find my own rhythm. Crossing the timing mat into river the water was about 15 degrees, which although a little chilly on the feet was not noticeable through my lovely HUUB wetsuit.”
“We were off! I started with some breaststroke to acclimatise to the cold water on my face and where we entered the water was somewhat murky from the mud being churned up but I was soon free styling at a nice steady space as the water became clearer and clearer. The bottom was sandy and visibility was amazing with loads of fish and crabs visible. After about 1/2 hr I chilled out for a bit with some breaststroke just to take in the most magnificent scenery and have a little chat with a couple of swimmers who’d decided to do the same. Words would not do justice beautiful countryside we were swimming through and the outstanding water quality.”
“Support from some paddle boarders, jet skis and a rib, kept us in the best bit of the river to make the most of the outgoing tidal current so it felt like one was just gliding trough the water with a steady stroke. At about 3/4 of the way through it started to get sore around my neck even though I’d liberally greased up with Vaseline and a lovely lady help me loosen the collar, but by then the damage was done.”
“I started to over rotate so I didn’t have to roll my neck too much, but it didn’t help that much. Still no pain, no gain.”
“By this time the field have moved apart considerably and coming round the final bend I could make out a line of boats moored up which was the start of the finish and indicating the ‘Swoosh’ as the mouth of the estuary narrows was almost upon us.”
“I’d pre ordered a pint and a pasty at the finish and I started to focus on that as a mantra (Pint and a pasty. Pint and a pasty………) to drive me down through the boats”.
“The last 500m felt like flying as the current here can get to about 8 knots and before I knew it I was up on the beach, albeit a bit wobbly, at the finish to be greeted by my son.”
“I crossed the timing mat, stopped my Garmin and he held my hand as I made my way to my wife who’d missed me emerging from the water as I’d taken less time that I thought to complete.”
“I made my way to pick up my bag, which had been delivered from the start, got my glasses out and was amazed that I’d done the 6km in a respectable 1hr51. I then made my way to collect my pint and a pasty which went down like manna from heaven.”
“The gods smiled at the weekend! Great weather, beautiful location, fantastic organisation and defiantly one to consider again.”
At Littlehampton Park Run – Juliette Reader ran and returned a great 3rd placed lady overall. Next home Chris Sloggett moving across from his normal Park Run to complete number 111. This was because Worthing Park Run was cancelled due to another event on the prom. Adrian Oliver was 5 seconds behind in 23.22 just 3 seconds outside his PB. Steve Bridgeman, Jane Bridgeman, & Jenny Oliver completed the Tuff Six. Jason Rae ensured the Tuff name was showing at Bognor Park Run as he accumulated run number 109. Elaine Rousseau ran at Lancing Green Park Run.