Pointbreak Open Water Challenge at Oanob
In the absence of any foreign Olympic swimmers, this year’s Oanob Mile promises to be a swim event more representative of the abilities of local swimmers.
The annual Pointbreak Open Water swim will take place this Sunday, 11 March, at Lake Oanob Resort. The dam is again close to full and the water is warm so the race is expected not to be wetsuit legal. Competitors can choose between a 2.1km, the longest open water swim in Namibia, or a 700m sprint. Event organisers, Otb Sport, said there are already well over 120 entries.
Otb Sport says that they are glad that the sport has grown from almost nothing to a well established and competitive sport across the age groups. Open water swimming is one of the fastest growing sports on the planet. It is a sport that anyone can do, from young to old and many people are entering the event as a family.
Some of the amateur gala swimmers are showing a keen interest in open water and have already entered. “At one stage we were quite concerned that none of the club swimmers would arrive as their coaches are planning a long taper period in preparation for the Level 3 gala in South Africa being held near the end of March. However our fears have been to put rest with large numbers already entered. On the day we expect at least 160 swimmers taking part which is a phenomenal amount in the Namibia swimming environment,” said Otb Sport in a statement.
The 2012 race is going to be harshly competitive. In the 2.1km Elite category 18 year old, Florian Hentzen (winner and record breaker at the 2011 Pupkewitz Jetty Mile), is a favourite along with Christiaan Lamprecht. In 2011 Christiaan took third place in a time of 28:05 behind the Italian Olympic Triathletes, Jonathan Ciavatella and Fabian Alessandro. In 2011 Florian was six seconds behind Christiaan in a time of 28:10. With no Olympic triathletes the race will certainly be between these two young competitive Namibians.
The Senior Male category (30 plus age group) is as always, expected to be a tough and completive race. 2011 Winner Paddy Murphy will be battling it out against Alexander Skinner who had a brilliant race in Swakopmund, easily winning the veteran category in the Jetty Mile. Other possible contenders for top positions in the Veteran category are triathletes Frank Bombosch, Patrick De Goede, Archie Graham, Mark Brinkmann and Andy Chase. Some of these guys are very fit after having just come back from the Grabouw Xterra race in South Africa.