The pristine canals of Marina Martinique have hosted six  international level open water swim events during the 09/10 summer. Catering for entry level swimmers with bank to bank races to the challenges of the 10K marathon swim, the series has been well supported and includes the traditional Marina Mile swim that is held every December in Jeffreys Bay.

Marina Martinique ensures a spectator friendly race. Photo: Carl Newman

There are plans underway to hold a winter swim series at Marina Martinique.  Many of the open water swimmers compete in wetsuits already so the cold water is not a deterrent. The Kouga Swim Club will be training throughout the winter at the La Caribe flats at Marina Martinique in their Xcel wetsuits as open water swimming is set to become an all year round sport and not just a summer based one.

Open Water swimming is a tough sport and not for the faint of heart.Johan Smit and Demi Meyer ask for no mercy and take no prisoners on the way to the finish of the bank to bank race at Marina Martinique. Photo: Carl Newman

The Eastern Cape is quickly gaining the reputation for being the open water swim capital of South Africa and already hosts more Swim South Africa sanctioned events than any other province in the country. This reputation will be further enhanced when the inaugural 7.5 K  Nelson Mandela Bay Bell Buoy Challenge takes place over the Easter Weekend in Port Elizabeth.

The Bell Buoy Reef off Hobie Beach in Port Elizabeth will test swimmers in April. There are over 40 entrants already for the 7.5 K race including English Channel record holder and multiple world champion Petar Stoychev.

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