The 2015 aQuelle Midmar Mile took place in ideal conditions on Sunday morning at the Midmar Dam that saw a number of records tumble.
The 42nd edition of the worlds largest open water swimming event proved to be a record affair with the crowning of two athletes that deserve the undisputed titles of “King and Queen of the Mile” : Keri-Anne Payne and Chad Ho.
Total domination is the only way to describe Kerri-Anne Payne’s performance in the main event, the Woman 13-30 category when she produced a world class performance to secure her 8th title of the world famous event in scintillating form.
Payne was a lady with a mission and headed out the field from the gun with the rest of the field playing catch up vying for the minor placing. At the 400m mark her lead was 30m on the field and at the 800m mark this had been extended to 50m. Going through the final “hotspot” at 1200m this had grown to close to 70m.
Payne’s drive to the finish was unrelenting and she crossed the line in a fast time of 17 minutes and 35 seconds, a mere 2 seconds slower than her personal best of 17:33.
Despite losing his goggles at the start Chad Ho produced a scintillating performance to be crowned the undisputed “King of Midmar” when he posted his 6th consecutive victory at this world famous event in a new record time.
Despite the early setback, Ho reigned in the leading pack which saw the promising Matthew Meyer claim the first “hotspot” at 400m slightly ahead of a determined Ho and a persistent Danie Marais.
Going into the second “hotspot” Ho had started to take control of the race and threw down the challenge to the contenders who were determined not to lose him and continued to draft off him.
Going into the 1200m mark both Meyer and Marais surged but Ho showed his experience and responded like a true champion, maintaining his composure and lifted his game to claim the third “hotspot” and the race was on.
As they approached the finish line the athletes were edged on by a vocal crowd and with 100m to go it was anyone’s race.
It was at this point that Ho extended his lead and as they exited the water he held the edge crossing the finish line in a time of 17:04 slashing a massive 9 seconds off the Polish ace Prezmek Stanzcyk record effort of 17:13 established in 2004.