Thursday, 30 August 2007
Saturday, 25 August 2007
Congratulations what a swim !!!
Update email from Michael Oram :
Captain Mathew Webb started his successful swim of the English Channel on the 24th August 1875. He took 21 hours 45 mins to reach French soil.
Wonder what he would have said if he knew that Petar Stoychev would start and complete his successful Channel swim 132 years later to the day ?
Break the 7 hour barrier with a new World Record of 6 hours 57 mins 50 secs.
That was 6 minutes off the old record of 7 hours 3 mins 52 seconds set by Christof 2 years ago.
Start -- Shakespeare Beach 10:11
Finish -- Point @ Cap Gris Nez 18:08:50
Pilot Boat: --- Gallivant
Pilot: --- Michael Oram
Crew: --- Derek Carter
Observers: Jennie Hanson & Alison Streeter MBE
On the same day 18.5 mins later than Petar the Russian swimmer Yuriy Kudinov left Shakespeare Beach for his attempt at the World record. It was a tense day and a race to the end. His track was identical to Petars with the hourly track compilations showing the swimmers running neck and neck with only small 50 to 100 metre fluctuations in the speeds over each hour. Petar came out on top 8 minutes 46 seconds in front of Yiriy.
Yuriy landed just a bit further down from the point at Cap Gris Nez - under the lighthouse - with a time of 7 hours 6 mins and 04 sec (to be confirmed).
The sea was not flat - it was not rough either, just the usual "Channel chop" we expect after a Northerly blow. The Northerly / North North West wind helped hold up a very weak flood tide then turned to the west to help at the end. The Neap tide was at it's lowest. One of those days when you hope it all goes right -- and it did on this occasion.
Friday, 24 August 2007
Saturday, 18 August 2007
"Alison Streeter has conquered the English Channel 43 times, more than anyone in the world. This total includes a triple-channel swim. She also completed seven Channel crossings in one year, a feat made more difficult because she mounted her challenges against this 21 mile body of water one at a time on separate attempts of about one every ten days. Alison is also the fastest woman from France to England (8 hours 48 minutes), a record she established in 1988. She was the first (and so far only) woman to swim the Channel three ways non-stop in 1990 taking 34 h 40 min for the feat. Only 2 other men have succeeded.
The Queen gave her the MBE in 1991 for the above and charity fundraising. To date she has raised over $100,000 for various charities. In May 2006 she was inducted into the International Swimming Hall of Fame in Fort Lauderdale. She worked as a currency trader all her working life in London until earlier this year, and now spends part of her life in Adelaide (Seacliff) and the summers in Dover in her beloved English Channel as a fully qualified Boat Pilot."
On the training front...its been a strange week, what with work and parenting through the summer holidays. Not to mention two days sickness, one of which I was laid up in bed having spent the previous twelve hours projectile vomiting at half hour intervals. Didn't get to the sea as a result of being ill so only pool swims this week, all better now though.. so hoping for better schedule this coming week. the plan is 20km a week consistently now, mainly intervals pyramids etc against the clock, 30km a week by Christmas. Building to 40+ km by the start of the season in May 2008, Well...that's the plan as it stands, but that could all change, we will see.
This week 15,350km. Not so bad in the circumstances
Monday, 13 August 2007
After a lengthy stop over at Bluewater just off the M25, (Kelly was horrified going over the Dartford Crossing ! She has nightmares of how she will come to her doom on a similar structure!! strange but true) we eventually arrived in Dover around 6pm, checked into the Ramada and made our way immediately to the sea front, I wasn't entirely sure of the exact location of swimmers beach though our guesstimate wasn't far off. Kelly picked up the first pebble she set her eyes on and we had a paddle to our knees to check the water in THE ENGLISH CHANNEL. I am pleased to report that it didn't feel too bad after my dread following the balmy Red Sea.
It was such a nice evening, so we walked and talked and took some photographs of the usual stuff, ie The Matthew Webb bust, The Two swimmers and The Harbour itself. Then we returned to the hotel to eat and have some long awaited sleep.
Saturday morning wake to a glorious day, after breakfast we made the short trip to the harbour early enough to claim a parking space, the sea front was already a hub of activity with many French and Italian sellers in situ and various other stalls.
The race registration took place between 8.30 and 9.30 followed by the brief, it was obvious at the briefing that a lot of young club swimmers (racing snakes) were taking part yet they looked barely old enough.
Into the water on the role call at 9.57am with much trepidation, I was convinced it was going to be dreadful after last week, I swam over to the Pier Wall and was delighted that it wasn't the freezing temperature I had feared all week. The whistle blew for the start and the racing snakes were off in a flash, some introduction to the harbour this was going to be. I plodded down to the boundary groin touched and returned to the finish on 34 minutes, by which time Kelly was itching to get to the bar.....to re hydrate. The presentation took place a short time later, The remainder of the day was spent making introductions to several Channel Hero's including The General aka Freda Streeter, The Shingle Stomper Barry and Cliff Holding to name but a few. Then sun worship and a tipple or two (it was Becks birthday so we had a valid excuse after all)
Sunday and another wonderful day weather wise, down to the harbour for ten (its normally nine for the swimmers but I didnt want to interfere with the regulars on my first day, as they would be doing long 6 and 7 hour swims in anticipiation of making crossing in the near future) I spoke with Freda (see pic below) and felt as though she had taken me under her wing without delay, all the horror stories I had heard were not true, she was lovely and without hesitation I thought "I like her, this is going to be good" She was kind enough to allow me to just do 90 minutes on my first day too.
couldn't find my clear goggles but wore my tinted ones getting in more or less right away and began swimming to the Eastern Dock Wall, On the return the chop picked up quite a bit and I couldn't see a thing, the temperature was fine, I swam back and the repeated the same with a shorter loop third time round. We couldn't swim up the other end of the harbour at this point due to other demonstrations taking place. The 90 minutes were up fairly quickly, other than the frustration of my misty goggles and a cold left hand I felt really good. I was my longest sea swim to date and a massive step forward. Later that morning I met and spoke with the Queen her self aka Alison Streeter, she too was really positive and full of great advice. Another lovely person, the place seemed to be full of them, the energy was almost overwhelming.
Before too long we said our goodbyes, received some training advice from Freda and promised to return. Thank you all for a great weekend, for your time and generosity. WE WILL BE BACK
90 minutes @ 18 degrees