Warm-hearted swim­mers brave the icy ocean

Weekend Argus (Saturday Edition) - - NEWS -

3.5km route off Clifton’s 3rd beach.

The race was part of the Cadiz Swim Se­ries, cold-water sea swims which cel­e­brate SA, pro­mote open-water swim­ming and raise funds for good causes. A to­tal of R9 000 was raised yes­ter­day for the Open Water Swim­ming De­vel­op­ment Trust.

First home in yes­ter­day’s 3.5km race was 15-year-old Cal­lum Bell in a time of 52.41min­utes while the mile (1.6km) was won by Va­sow Stevens in 23:27.

Bell, a grade nine stu­dent at Bish­ops, said the swim was “fun but cold in places”, adding that “swim­ming for such a good cause” made it worth­while.

Hazel Mc­queen, who fin­ished­sec­ond in the mile, said even though or­gan­is­ers put the water tem­per­a­ture at 14°C, “it felt more like 12°C”.

“There were warm and cold patches, a strong cur­rent and blue bot­tles that stung some swim­mers, but for­tu­nately not me – but I’d do it all over again. There is noth­ing like the cold water and be­ing in the ocean to wake you up,” she said.

Mc­queen is one of a group of Capeto­nian swim­mers who swim ev­ery day in the At­lantic – sans wet­suits – re­gard­less of the weather. “We’re in the water all year long. It is re­ju­ve­nat­ing. It makes me feel alive.”

Cadiz Hold­ings CEO and in­ter­na­tion­ally renowned ice swim­mer Ram Barkai also took part in the 3.5km route.

He con­grat­u­lated all com­peti­tors for play­ing their part in sup­port­ing dis­ad­van­taged swim­mers and cel­e­brat­ing rec­on­cil­i­a­tion.

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