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Displaying items by tag: open sea swimming

#openseaswimming – 300 swimmers have entered Sandycove Island Challenge 2012 to be held in Kinsale, Co. Cork on Saturday September 15th at 4pm.

Now it its 16th year, the 1,800 metre race takes swimmers around the famous Sandycove Island. The Island Challenge is one of the biggest open water swims in the country. The popular format sees swimmers in togs and wetsuits mixing in a series of staggered starts with medals awarded based on swim times in these two categories plus 5 year age groups and a special "best master swimmer" award based on closest time to the world record in their age group. The record swim time is 19 minutes and 40 seconds, which was set 6 years ago.

Swimmers from Ireland, England, Scotland, USA and Israel will compete in this year's event.

Sandycove Island in Kinsale is the leading location in Ireland and one of the world's

top five locations for swimmers training for marathon open water swims. Many Sandycove swimmers have successfully completed solo English Channel swims, as well as the Manhattan Island Marathon Swim, the Catalina Channel in California, Lake Zurich in Switzerland, and many others.

'The Edge Sports' Sandycove Island Challenge 2012 is the last mass participation swim on the Irish 2012 open water swim calendar. Prior to the swim and afterwards at a social function in Kinsale, swimmers will discuss their 2012 accomplishments and plan goals for 2013 and beyond. Race organising committee chairman Ciaran O'Connor reflects on the importance of the event: "Since 2005 our local area has produced more than 20 solo English Channel swimmers. For each of them – The Sandycove Island Challenge has been an integral part of their training and journey. A few years from now we'll look back and hopefully identify 20 more channel swimmers who were inspired during this year's race."

Cork Masters Swimming Club and Cork Lions Club host the event and the proceeds benefits local charities. We are very grateful to our sponsor, The Edge Sports, a local specialist sports shop based in Cork, who have supported the swim for the past 3 years.

Published in Sea Swim
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#GALWAY BAY SWIM - The Galway Advertiser reports that the seventh annual Frances Thornton Memorial Galway Bay Swim will take place this Saturday 28 July.

Some 40 hardy souls will brave the waters for the 13km swim from Aughinish in Co Clare to Blackrock Tower in Salthill with the aim of raising €50,000 for Cancer Care West.

The swim will also pay tribute to Páraic Casey, who tragically died last weekend while attempting to cross the English Channel.

Among those taking part in Galway Bay will be Irish international open water swimmer Chris Bryan, who narrowly missed out on a spot at the London Olympics.

The numbers are up on last year's swim, which saw 25 competitors - including Athlone man Jim O'Connor, who as reported last year was swimming up to 30km each week at his local pool in preparation.

And the event comes just a month after the Open Sea Swim Competition which formed part of the Volvo Ocean Race finale in the City of the Tribes.

More details of the swim are availabe at

Published in Sea Swim

#SWIMMING TRAGEDY - RTÉ News reports that an Irishman has died while attempting to swim solo across the English Channel.

Páraic Casey, 45, was less than 1km from the French coast and more than 16 hours into the crossing when he took ill in the early hours of Sunday morning.

He could not be resuscitated despite the immediate efforts of safety personnel.

The swimmer from Passage West in Co Cork has begun the open sea crossing just after 9am on Saturday to raise funds for St Vincent de Paul and St Patrick's Marymount Hospice.

According to The Irish Times, he had passed a standard medical examination, had completed the necessaary training and was wearing a wetsuit for the swim.

Casey is survived by his wife Riana, who described him as “amazing”.

Published in Sea Swim

#OPEN SEA SWIMMING - An Irishman has become the first ever person to complete the open sea swimming equivalent of climbing the seven highest peaks, as The Irish Times reports.

Steve Redmond from West Cork completed the final leg of the Oceans7 Challenge when he crossed Japan's Tsugaru Strait with a time of 14 hours 24 minutes on Saturday.

According to the Irish Independent, the 47-year-old father of two - and nominee as World Open Water Swimming Man of the Year in 2011 - began his challenge back in 2009 by swimming across the English Channel.

That feat was followed by crossings of the North Channel between Scotland and Northern Ireland, the Strait of Gibraltar, the San Pedro Channel south of Los Angeles, the Moloka'i Channel in Hawaii, and the Cook Strait between New Zealand's north and south islands.

Aside from braving dangerous currents and the treat of sharks and stinging jellyfish, Redmond had to fend off a number of other challengers for the coveted title - including Australian marathon swimmer Penny Palfrey, who was just one crossing away from the record.

Redmond's now set to return to a hero's welcome in his hometown of Ballydehob this evening.

Published in Sea Swim

#openseaswimming – An Open Sea Swim Competition, as part of the Volvo Ocean Race Galway Grand Finale, was launched by Mayor of Galway City Hildegarde Naughton & Corrib Water Polo Club in conjunction with Galway and Shark Swimming Clubs on June 13th2012 in Galway’s Salthill Hotel.

The 5th Annual Open Sea Swim, which goes from Grattan Road Beach to Blackrock Tower, will commence on Saturday 30th June. The swim is part of the many aquatic activities scheduled for the 9 day Volvo Ocean Race Grand Finale festival.

The Corrib Open Sea Swim is the only national qualifying sea swimming event in the west of Ireland and annually attracts hundreds of eager swimmers to the shores of Galway Bay. The swimming races last year were placed in the top five best-attended races last season.

Andrew Flannagan of Corrib Swimming and Water Polo Club commented "on behalf of Corrib Swimming and Waterpolo Cub I'd like to thank all of our sponsors as well as 'Let's do it Galway' for their assistance in organising the swim and we and the other swimming clubs involved hope that sea swimmers of all ages and abilities come along to enjoy the swims."

The Kingfisher Club announced that they will once again sponsor the Corrib Open Sea Swim for men this year. Managing Director of the Kingfisher Group Joe Cosgrove said: ‘The Kingfisher Club is delighted to be associated with an event of this caliber, and wish all the participants the best of luck in the open sea swim’.

The Women’s race will be sponsored by Mc Sharry Brothers Construction Equipment, Ballybrit.

Each race is a distance of 2200 metres on an outgoing tide, either with or against the wind, depending on the climatic conditions of the day. The races will be at 2.30pm (Men) and 3.30pm (women) on the 30th of June 2012 and can be followed and watched by simply walking the promenade in Salthill.

Corrib Water Polo Club are also running two under-age swims this year; at 2.30 pm a ‘junior’ race from ladies beach to Blackrock boat-slip for younger swimmers aged 12-16 who can swim 400m. At 3.30 pm on race-day there will be a novices swim from the ‘first-rock’ to Blackrock boat slip for our youngest swimmers aged 10 – 14 and is about 100m. Full lifeguard cover will be provided.

Prizes are awarded to the first six in each race, the first veteran home (over 50), and a team prize for the first four swimmers home from one club. The fastest

time recorded in each race will be awarded the Fastest Time Trophies. The prize giving ceremony will take place in the Salthill Hotel immediately after the end of the women’s race on the day at about 7.30pm.

Published in Sea Swim

Local French teacher Gary Knox has completed his swim from Rathlin to Ballycastle for Portrush Lifeboat Station on the very day that the station was celebrating its 150th Anniversary.
Gerry Doran Chairman of the Ballycastle Fundraising Branch texted the station at the start of the race and then at the end to confirm that Gary had completed his amazing feat!
This information was then relayed to the people who had gathered in Portrush for the Service of Thanksgiving and Vellum presentation.
Shelley Pinkerton, Chairman of the Portrush Fundraising Branch said
'This is an example of the innovative ways that people come up with to raise funds for the RNLI. It's very fitting that Gary completed the swim on the very day we are gathered to celebrate Portrush Lifeboat Station 150 years of saving lives at sea'
Gary who was not wearing wetsuit swam approximately 7 miles in 2 hours 55 minutes. The swim was for the RNLI and in memory of his friend and training partner, Ciaran McGinn who completed the endurance swim in 2007 and raised funds for his charity, Ballycastle RNLI.
Gary was accompanied by Portrush kayakers who followed the rib and provided him with energy drink every hour. In accordance with ILDSA rules, Gary was not permitted to touch the boat or kayak. Donations can still be made online at and there are collection boxes in the shops along the prom in Ballycastle.
Gary would like to thank Alan Wilson of Aquasports for providing boat cover, John Morton for advice and guidance, members of the Ballycastle Fundraising Branch and others for their assistance in organising the event.


Gary nears the finish line

Published in Sea Swim
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