LOCALS TRAIN TO SWIM ENGLISH CHANNEL
A PAIR of bold Whitsunday swimmers are preparing to test the icy waters of the United Kingdom later this year.
PRD nationwide Whitsunday principal Christie Leet and project development manager Michael Hanisch will swim the chilly English Channel in September - daring to complete nearly 40km of torturous swimming.
“We’ve been training since November last year. Doing 30 to 40km a week and a lot of pool laps,” Mr Leet explained.
However the pool will seem like a spa in comparison to the Channel, with Leet, who referred to the challenge as “the holy grail of swimming”, identifying hypothermia as their biggest threat.
“Only 1000 people have done it before,” he said.
“The mileage and distance is going well and we’re ahead of where we need to be. The only difficulty is being in North Queensland with no cold water...we’ll be right for distance it’s just about staying warm enough.”
Training for such an event has proven strenuous, but Mr Leet and Mr Hanisch have designed a series of swims to prepare.
Last week the pair completed a 31km test stretching from Dent Island to the Boathouse at Port of Airlie. It took them seven hours to complete. This weekend they will undergo a series of sessions in Sydney, hoping to test themselves in cooler waters.
DARING SWIM: Christie Leet (pictured) is preparing to swim the English Channel with colleague Michael Hanisch later this year.
CLOSE SECOND: Michael Hanisch and Rachael Elkaim followed Christie Leet a short while later, taking only six and a half hours to swim from Dent Island to Boathaven Beach.