Strong wind and choppy conditions did little to deter the growing number of open water swimmers from competing in the Kouga Express EPA Swim Challenge Series at Marina Martinique over the weekend.

Reigning Marina Mile champ, Chris Van Der Sande extended his dominance in the jbaynews.com 5 K swim with a convincing victory over Andrew Fischer and Handre Barnard. The up and coming Lise-Marie Goosen won the womens division from stalwart Rebecca Newman and Chrislie Niehaus. All the ladies swam national qualifying times. Veteran swimmer Brenton Williams was the first Master swimmer home in the event.

Newcomer Keenan April won the Cirrus 3 K swim from Kurt van Staden with Master swimmer JC Van Wyk storming to 3rd place overall as well as winning the veteran division from Richden Jute. Tarryn Els won the women’s race with local swimmer Caro de Jager coming second. Anze Zeelie took third place. The ever improving Denise Bosman won the master’s division from Elsa Craig.

Tyron Venter, the 25 K South African champ will be in action at the Steers Marina Mile

Francis Searle from Humansdorp was the first man home in the o/50 division beating Marina Martinique local Garth Wooding into second position.

55 year old Nick Reen won the Training Edge 1 K swim with Nepo Ntsono the first woman home. Legendary swimmer Mally Richards (78 yrs) from Jeffreys Bay swam his first race of the season as did 83 year old Jane Gendenhuys. Seth de Swart won the boys race.

A tight tussle in the 500m swim saw Pieter Ellis edge out his brother Danie into second position with Kyle De Villiers narrowly claiming third place from Kai Sampson. Michelle Strydom swam hard to beat Rebecca Baard into second place in the women’s race.

Peter Gradwell won the bank to bank swim, beating Luka Sampson and Tristan Zoetmulder. Roland Van Wyk and Aiden De Villiers both swam hard as well. Miche Genis won the girls race.

The next event at the Marina is the Steers Marina Mile which takes place on 23 December 2010. The action will begin on 22 December with a gruelling 25 K swim. The South African champion Tyron Venter has confirmed his entry into the race. “We need more long distance swims in South Africa and it will be a privilege to become involved and help to establish the Marina Martinique 25 K”, said Tyron.

Entries can be done online at Steers Marina Mile. The Kouga Swim Club is holding training sessions at Marina Martinique on Tuesday and Thursday mornings at 6 am and Friday afternoons at 4 pm.

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