This year on Sunday, July 28th the Masters Swimming Association of British Columbia (MSABC) held its first ever Open Water Provincial Championships.
With over 200 entrants in five events swimmers from across the province jumped into the warm waters of Thetis Lake (Victoria, British Columbia) to share their love of open water swimming. The event raised close to $20,000 for Multiple Sclerosis (MS).
The event was a partnership between the HtO Thetis Lake Swim for MS and MSABC. With the help of SwimBC and a special guest Chief Referee from Calgary – Patti Clarkson – the organizers were able to have events that were both sanctioned and exhibition, ultimately leading to more participation in the swim.
Hosting a sanctioned event was a significant challenge for the organizers as there is a shortage of open water swim officials in British Columbia. Once they found one however, they quickly jumped on the opportunity to use the Provincial Championships as a training opportunity for future officials.
A significant number of Victoria Masters Swim Club members volunteered at the event, providing encouragement and support to a number of “new” swimmers. Masters swimmers participated in both the sanctioned and exhibition events with some of them swimming up to 8 kilometers that day.
Masters swimming is seeing an increase in the number of people participating in open water swims on Vancouver Island. This year’s Thetis Lake Swim saw an increase in participants of over 40%. Several MSABC members have jumped in for the swim portion of local triathlon events and close to 20 Victoria Masters participated in a fun “wee little swim across the lake” which took place at Lake Cowichan 1 week prior to the Provincials.
Congratulations to OMSC Lake Monsters Mike Stamhuis, Phred Martin, Denise Cesselli, Tracey Sutton and Leora Dahl for successfully crossing the English Channel in 13 hours and 41 minutes.
(KELOWNA, BC) – Olympic bronze medalist Richard Weinberger will be visiting Kelowna as part of the Apple Open Water Swim hosted by Okanagan Masters Swim Club (OMSC) on August 16 & 17.
Weinberger took home the bronze medal in the 10 kilometer open water swim event at the 2012 London Summer Olympics and is now set to hit the Okanagan waters to share his swimming wisdom. All registrants of the Apple Open Water Swim will be eligible to participate in a special open water swim clinic with Weinberger on Friday, August 16 before the races commence.
Swimmers can register for either the 1.5km or 5km race both to be held at Tugboat Beach in Kelowna. The Okanagan Masters Swim Club is ecstatic to have special guest Weinberger be a part of the event.
“Open Water Swimming is now an official Olympic sport. Having Olympic medalist Richard Weinberger from Victoria compete in the Kelowna Apple Open Water Swim will inspire our youth to participate in the sport, and I can’t think of a more scenic venue than Waterfront Park” says OMSC President and English Channel swimmer, Brent Hobbs.
For more information about Weinberger and the Apple Open Water Swim please visit the OMSC website.
OMSC would like to thank the sponsors of the event: Team Aquatic Supplies, Arena and GranFondo Axel Merckx.
Okanagan Masters Swim Club is for adult swimmers of all kinds: Competitive, recreational, open water and triathletes. As one of the largest Masters Swim clubs in British Columbia with 5 trained coaches and a home base at the H20 Adventure Fitness centre, the OMSC has something for everyone. For more information about Okanagan Masters, visit their website www.okmasters.com