Sports Page— 28th March 2011 Swimming - By Curtis Morton
Olivier Marceau creates new record in Cross channel Swim
There was a large gathering at the OualieBeach hotel on the morning of Sunday 27th March as swimmers of all shapes and sizes gathered to participate in the annual Nevis to St.Kitts cross channel swim. This year, the event took on added significance as included with some of the usual participants were amateur and professional Triathletes who are in Nevis for the big Tri Star Triathlon which will be hosted by the St.Kitts-Nevis Triathlon Federation on Saturday 2nd April. As a matter of fact, at the head count conducted at about 8.05 am the stated number of participants was 116. However, unconfirmed information at the finish line indicated that there may have been actually 128 participants—either way, a brand new record in terms of the number of persons taking part in the event.
Sadly, host island Nevis, had one official lone participant in Jervan Swanston who stated that he did not have a clue what he was getting into but that he intended to complete the course. A couple of hours later, affected by cramps, he was forced to take a boat ride towards the finish line but bravely got back into the water to complete the course, not far from the finish line, to huge applause. At least two other participants were forced to take boat rides to the finish line. It was nice to note that apart from the usual Kayaks, quite a number of boats not only travelled the course as a part of the safety features for the race but also transported the many spectators over to St.Kitts and back to Nevis—free of cost.
The Coast guard was very well represented and the Red Cross was also present, including Cardiac specialist, Nurse Roxanne Brookes, who quickly indicated that she hoped that she would not be needed.
Racing to the finish line in a record breaking time of 58:09 minutes was ace Triathlete Olivier Marceau with the world renowned Chris Mc Cormack, hot on his heels. Completing the swim in ninth spot was 10 year old Daryl Appleton out of Antigua. He competed in the event for the first time a year ago.
The 2.5 mile swim which started at Oualie Beach in Nevis and culminated at Reggae Beach in St.Kitts, attracted participants from all over the world, including France, USA, Great Britain, Brazil, Trinidad and Tobago, Australia, Antigua, South Africa, St.Kitts and Nevis.
Arguably, the oldest participant was 66 year old Barry Wilson out of Switzerland who received a virtual standing ovation when he exited the water at ReggaeBeach.
The top triathletes will now finalize preparations for the mega Tri Star Triathlon event which comes up this coming Saturday. By the look of things, sporting fans on Nevis are in for a major treat.
St.Kitts & Nevis Triathlon Federation
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