Mayor dives into big swim’s pro­mo­tion

North West Telegraph - - News - Robert Dougherty

Port Hed­land Mayor Camilo Blanco has made a splash at a lo­cal com­mu­nity swim­ming chal­lenge, swap­ping his of­fice for the open­ing lap of the pool.

The Town of Port Hed­land coun­cil­lor and Pil­bara Ports Au­thor­ity en­vi­ron­ment and her­itage man­ager Daniel Ped­er­sen fin­ished the open­ing lap for YMCA Port2Port com­mu­nity swim­ming chal­lenge last Wed­nes­day.

The event will see res­i­dents at­tempt to sym­bol­i­cally swim from Port Hed­land to Fre­man­tle, or about 1770km.

Over the four-month chal­lenge at South Hed­land Aquatic Cen­tre, swim­mers of all ages and abil­i­ties at­tempt to col­lec­tively power through 35,400 laps of the 50m lap pool.

Mr Blanco joked it had been many years since he had last swum laps in the pool and he might re­quire aid to keep him from sink­ing.

“I reckon I would have been 13 the last time I was in the pool, 33 years ago . . . it will be freestyle, no other fancy stuff go­ing on,” he said be­fore the swim.

“35,400 laps means we need to get started and get it fin­ished, be­cause it looks like there is a lot of work to do to get through it.

“The Town of Port Hed­land has sorted out any past is­sues with the South Hed­land Aquatic Cen­tre re­cently and it is a great fa­cil­ity now, and we haven’t had any prob­lems with it since the re­pairs.”

A lap chart will be placed be­side the pool to log the amount of laps com­pleted, count­ing un­til the desti­na­tion is met and a map of West­ern Aus­tralia will be posted to track progress along the coast.

“Port2Port is a great op­por­tu­nity for the Hed­land com­mu­nity to en­joy what the South Hed­land Aquatic Cen­tre has to of­fer,” SHAC aquat­ics co-or­di­na­tor Kim John­son said.

“We en­cour­age ev­ery­one to come on down to the cen­tre and help us achieve this mile­stone dis­tance from Port Hed­land to Fre­man­tle Port.”

Town of Port Hed­land Mayor Camilo Blanco and Pil­bara Ports Au­thor­ity's En­vi­ron­ment and Her­itageMan­ager Dan Ped­er­sen.

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