Sunday, February 26, 2012

Potpourri of swims...

We had a lovely day at Long Reef, but then we usually do. From all accounts, punters had lovely days, too, at Tama-Cloey, Lake Macquarie, Half Moon Bay, and we know the Tweetybirds had a lovely time swimming to Rottnest Island.

Only discordant note was, yet again, the mean-spirited Warringah Council, who offer no support to their surf clubs by waiving parking fees during ocean swims. Worse, whilst we were swimming, the council rangers hit the carpark booking people. And this whilst one of their parking ticket dispensers wasn't working properly, making it harder to buy tickets at $5 per hour. We'll have more to say about the unpleasant Warringah Council in our report, which we'll post tomorrow.

Sorry it introduced a sour note to what is one of the friendliest, warmest (in terms of hospitality) ocean swims of the season at Long Reef. Otherwise, what a beautiful course over the reef out towards Long Reef headland and back.

Tell us about your swims...


  1. Tama2Cloey

    What a great swim. Even though it's the 4th time I've entered and only the 2nd time I've got to swim the course (2 cancellations), I'm a big fan. Why? It's a journey swim. A good, testing distance. Exciting to swim over the reef into Clovelly. A "grandstand" finish in the smooth waters of Clovelly. These things will always keep me coming back. And, how good was that NE swell pushing us in towards Clovelly?

    For me though, the big difference and innovation of this swim is the "handicapped" starting wave system. For those who don't know about it, based on your times in other swims, you're seeded into different starting waves of about 25 people each of very similar speed. The fast swimmer waves start first, and there was a 1 minute gap between waves which means less waiting around for your start. This system really spreads the field and dramatically reduces the hustle 'n bustle around the course. I basically had clear water for almost the whole race. It also feels like an achievement if you catch someone from the wave in front of you, and you're always battling with people of similar speed. There was also a timing pad at the start line - I guess this helps reduce timing issues for people who start in the wrong wave.

    Also, thanks to the organising clubs. Water safety was great & visible, and the buses, bag transfer and all the other bits 'n pieces of running a swim went well.


  2. Like Kerry O'Shea @KAOSVIC I was disapointed not to swim around Cerberus at Half Moon Bay, I had done the swim a few years ago and was looking forward to doing it again. When you compare it to NSW swims I think a little bit of chop out there can't be to bad, we're not expecting to be in a pool? or maybe the organisers could offer two courses?
    With the temp sitting in the mid 30's I felt sorry for the wet suit wearers but then I overheard one guy say he was only a few points ahead and if he didn't wear one he would be beaten by his mate.

  3. I doubt if there has been a better ocean swim in the Sydney metrop area this season than the Tama2Cloey. Short interval starts of small seeded groups of swimmers over the timing mats worked really well and removed some of the possible hassles. Great to handle a slightly tricky swim out without worrying about rivals baulking in front, snapping at heels behind and cutting across ahead.
    Safety was ever present and clearly marking the course on one of the few calm seas this summer. It was a joy to feel the gentle NE swell lifting us along.
    Congratulations to both clubs for organising such a well run event and thanks to the safety crews for all their great work.

  4. Lake Macquarie.

    I wandered lonely as a cloud. In spite of the huge new buoys marking the course. For the first half of the race. The eco-friendly new dark colour disguising the sailing club not helping. Until I latched onto another swimmer's paddler to guide me. I hope they didn't mind me pushing in. Next year I might bring my own paddler. Save me 10 minutes in wonky navigation and sloppy pacing.

    Lovely swim this year. Great conditions. Good ferry shuttle to the start. Well run.


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