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Oanob open water draws record 250 swimmers for three distances plus kiddies swim

Oanob open water draws record 250 swimmers for three distances plus kiddies swim

This year the Pointbreak Open Water Swim in the Oanob Dam near Rehoboth, for the first time included a five kilometre event. After one hour and eleven minutes, the first male swimmer in this gruelling swim was Jörn Diekmann. He was followed by Mathew Reinhold (1:13:30) and Paddy Murphy (1:13:47).

OTB Sport, the industrious organisers behind the Oanob open water swim said swimmers registered with the Namibia Swimming Union could use the 5km event as a FINA qualifier for international events.

“FINA swimmers were not allowed to swim in a wetsuit and could not make contact with any life vessels or the water table. Jörn Diekmann and Dewald Nell, the only two swimmers looking for a FINA qualifying time, both made the FINA time requirement of 1h15. All other swimmers in the 5km were not aiming for a FINA qualifying time and most [wore] wetsuits and made use of the water table for some well-deserved refreshments” stated OTB’s Yvonne Brinkmann.

The top three ladies were Imma Hücke McFalrane in 1:28:38, second Tanya Mackensen in 1:31:09 and third Marike Skinner 1:36:46.

This year’s Pointbreak Open Water swim drew a record number of 250 entries for the three combined events, the 700 metres, 2.1 kilometre and the new 5 kilometre distance, as well as a fun competition for kiddies. At the time of the event, Oanob dam was around 91% full and swimmers did not have to climb over rocks, or leave the water to navigate certain sections of the track.

The flagship event still remains the 2.1 km distance. In this event, the first out the water was Corné Le Roux in 28:51. He was also first in the 15 and U age group. Matthias Lichtenberg was the second male overall in 29:44 and winner of the U30 age group. The third male and winner of the Senior (30-49) age group was Jurie Badenhorst in 30:03.

The females swimmers were not to be outdone. Joanne Liebenberg was first in 29:09 and second overall, only 18 seconds behind Corné Le Roux.The second female and fourth overall was Tiana Esslinger just 4 seconds behind Matthias Lichtenberg. Third was Heleni Stergiadis in 30:00, giving her 5th position overall.

In the 2.1km Elite Female category, Ilka Preschel took first place in 36:48. Sonja Obholzer was the first Senior Female in 37:06 with Monica Ochse the first Female Master in 40:58.

In the 700 m event, Namibian champion Lushano Lamprecht came first (09:24) with Martin Oosthuizen only six seconds later in second position. The first female was Ashia Whitelock (10:20)

Former Namibian swimmer and nowadays a dentist in Walvis Bay, Günther Streit won the Senior Male category in 10:41. Gábor Salamon was the first Male Master in 35:17.

Full results and photos can be viewed at

About The Author

Sport Contributor

The Economist does not have a dedicated sport reporter. This designation is used for several contributors who want their sport stories in the Economist. Experience has taught us that companies usually want their sport sponsorships published prominently, being the reason for a sports category. It now also carries general sport items but only those with direct Namibian relevance. - Ed.