TOP South African and local open water swimmers will take to the water at Marina Martinique on Monday, December 30 when the annual Marina Mile splashes off in the pristine salt water canals of the upmarket estate in Jeffreys Bay. The event, Nicholas Melck, has become one of the biggest open water swim events in South Africa – resurrected in 2002 when Yvonne Lentinello and Brenton Williams held the event which was won by Port Elizabeth swimmer David Glover.Eastern Cape swimmers have dominated the Mile ever since, with Matthew van der Burg, Philip Kuhn, Byron Lockett, David Marais, Michael Marais and Chris van der Sande all having won the event. Two women have dominated the Marina Mile: national swimmers Velia Janse van Rensburg and Jessica Roux.Iconic South African swimmer, Natalie du Toit, has raced at the Marina and won the South African Open Water Swim Champs held in Jeffreys Bay in 2011.More recently, fellow Olympian Michele Weber won a spectacular 5km race at the 2019 SA Champs in an event that has to be the most exciting race ever seen at Marina Martinique.Williams, says, “Marina Martinique is well established as the best open water swim venue in South Africa and has also hosted the SA Open Water Swim Champs since 2017.“The Mile caters for all levels of swimmers – from the novice to the swimmers who want to race. The canals are safe and there are no currents or tidal pushes, which makes for a great environment for inexperienced swimmers, as well as those who want to see how fast they can swim a mile.”This year’s swimming festival includes the Marina Mile at 12:00, the Marina Double Mile at 09:00 (swimmers must be 12 years or older), the Marina Half Mile at 10:30, and the Marina Bank-to-Bank at 11:15 (participants must be 10 years or younger).The first 200 entrants will receive a Marina Mile branded silicone swimming cap.Loads of lucky draw prizes will be up for grabs on the morning, while the various winners will receive a Billabong goodie bag and some lucky swimmers will walk away with Oakley sunglasses. Restaurant facilities are available on site at the Marina Wharf Restaurant.Enter at www.zsports.co.za.