When most people start thinking about going home after work, Namibian swimmer Bruce Salt had just landed on the French coastline about 10km south of Calais.
Earlier this week, shortly after 16:30 Namibian time, Bruce stepped ashore after a gruelling 13 hours and 34 minutes in the water, having traversed the English channel from England to France.
Bruce challenged the famous channel to support the work of his late brother’s foundation, Cancer Care Namibia for the support of cancer patients. Niel Salt died of cancer in 2011.
Bruce was accompanied by Fred Mardle in a small boat, together with Kevin Sherman of the Channel Swimming Association. For the purposes of recording the cross attempt, it must be observed and confirmed by a member of the association.
Bruce entered the cold water at 03:00 Namibian time during Sunday night. In England the time was 01:00, that is one o’ clock in the morning showing that about half the distance is swum during the night. He set out due east for Calais but after about 5 hours in the water, he encountered a strong current from the north which pushed him due south for the next six hours, taking him to a point about 15 km south of Calais. At that point, he had to correct his direction, turning north-east, almost directly into the current, and he struggled his way home for the last three hours of his epic swim but still ended up a fair distance south of Calais.
Bruce is the 1408th person since 1875 to successfully cross the channel in a solo swim. He is the 71st swimmer this year to complete this immense duel against the ocean.