October 16th 2014
The tides were strong last Saturday when hundreds of swimmers began a 15 kilometer race from Stanley Main Beach to Deepwater Bay. The 8th annual Clean Half Extreme Marathon Swim, was one of the toughest yet. The 65 teams of 5 people and 24 solo swimmers struggled with the effects of the full moon and strong outgoing current. In full force, tides caused racers to bring in some of the slowest times ever. But don’t let that discourage you – some records were still broken.
Organised by Doug Woodring of the Ocean Recovery Alliance, the race is part of the World Open Water Swimming Association and encourages a better appreciation for the ocean to swimmers and Hong Kong citizens, which will hopefully lead to a strong community of Ocean Ambassadors.
Former Olympic swimmer, Annemarie Munk (’88), says the race is always a great day out. “Open water swimming is really taking off in Hong Kong and the Clean Half is certainly one of the key events on the calendar. The overall message to keep the oceans clean does not go unnoticed and the carbon neutral element is praised amongst all that take part. We have always been blessed with great weather, perfect water temperature, and a good party at the end.”
The brother sister combo of Benjamin (16) and Jenna Freeman (17) from Australia won the solo Men’s and Women’s swims respectively, with Benjamin bringing in the 2nd fastest time of anyone in the course (team or solo). Overall, the Harry Wright International mixed team brought in the win with a time of 3:30:07. Curious to see the full results? Here are the solo and the team times.
For those who missed the water race extravaganza, watch the video above and take a look at these photos here. Click through to see them all!
Photo Credit: Jerome Perocheau/Clean Half Swim
The next open water swim in Hong Kong will be The Five, taking place on November 9th.