WHILE record numbers attended last Sunday’s aQuellé Ocean Racing Series at Hobie Beach in near perfect conditions, the Series leaders are starting to dominate the leader board with just four race days remaining for Season XI.
Young Ian Venter claimed his 5th 1km Ocean Swim win of the Season to remain unbeaten over this distance as over 500 people entered for Round 6 last week. Venter was followed by Jeffrey’s Bay’s Seth De Swardt with Joshua Bellairs in third place whilst in the ladies’ 1km division it was Kirsten Marriott who claimed gold from Amy Mardon and Natalie Ogden.
The most popular event on the morning was the 2km Ocean Swim with 140 entries and this was won Daniel Jones with Josh McGrath in second and Jarryd Cooke third whilst Antonelle Saporta won the ladies’ division from About IT Triathlon Summer Series champion Liza Kingston with Masters swimmer Denise Bosman in third place. Dylan Smith won the 3km Ocean Swim with Wayne Jones and Merrick Fairall placing second and third respectively.
In the 3km Ladies’ Swim it was Rebecca Newman from Brigitte Melly and Delwen Henderson.
On the beach the action was just as hot with Dylan Finlay extending his lead in the overall 5km beach run standings with another fine victory ahead of Njabulo Khumalo and Samkelo Tetyana whilst Tara Sacke took the ladies’ beach run from Sanet Owen and Lindi Van Tonder.
In the 5km Beach Walk it was Grobbie Grobler from Juan Slabbert and Andrew Armstrong with Maritza Craig winning the ladies’ race from Belinda Niemand and Emily Stemmett.
Open water swimming action for this weekend moves to Settlers Dam in Grahamstown for the third round of the Nelson Mandela Bay Aquatics (NMBA) EC Swim Series which takes place on Sunday morning (see www.ecswim.co.za for further information). All this ahead of the very busy February swimming period which features key open water races on each weekend. The NMBA open water 10km and 3km Championship races take place on Sunday, February 7, the 5km Championships on Sunday, February 14, whilst the 92nd SPAR River Mile takes place on the weekend of 20th and 21st and the Jendamark Bellbuoy Challenge 5km ocean swim will take place on Saturday, February 27.
The aQuellé Ocean Racing Series returns for Round 7 on Sunday, January 24. See www.zsports.co.za for further information on top local events.