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open water

Long Course Weekend, Jervis Bay – Fri 19 Oct 18

Report and photos by Maria Castles.

The weekend of 19-20-21 October 2018 saw the second Long Course Weekend Jervis Bay event. This is a unique multi-sport festival that offers real atmosphere. Over three days, athletes can choose any or all events from three disciplines (swim – Friday, bike – Saturday and run – Sunday) and multiple distances to create a tailor made weekend course for their ability. Each discipline has at least two distances available, including, for those looking to push their limits, a Long Course option – the longest distance (ie: a full triathlon distance) in each event. This time, two Tuggeranong Vikings – Kirsten Madsen and Maria Castles – made the trip to the beautiful coastal village of Huskisson, joining their friend Kerry O’Neill for the 950m swim leg of the event on the Friday.

Friday was a lovely sunny day with a decent crowd and a good atmosphere around the swim venue – the beach adjacent to White Sands Park at Huskisson. After checking out the course and start set up, it was time to don wetsuits and pose for pre-race photos at the finish line.

The swim was over a triangular course. In the fairly windy conditions, the first leg of the triangle was the hardest swim, due to the chop driven by the wind, with the second and final legs a bit easier.  Getting from the water exit point to the ‘arch’ marking the actual course finish line entailed a walk/run up a path of a couple of hundred metres through the bush to the park. All three successfully completed the swim, recording times between approximately 23 and 26 minutes. While the event awards were not categorised according to age groups, these times were quite competitive! All successful swimmers earned a sizable medal – usefully doubling as a fridge magnet!

After a celebratory coffee, all were very pleased to have done it! We can expect to see more from these three, with Kirsten and Kerry having plans for another ocean swim and Maria and Kirsten to take part in the Sri Chimnoy lake swim, here in Canberra, as part of a Vikings club relay team shortly.


British Masters Swimming Open Water Nationals – UK – 30 July 2017

Report by Greg Gourley, Club President

We received hot news about our Club Captain, Caz Makin, from the UK at the end of July 2017.

Caz WON her F45-49 age group at the British Masters Swimming Open Water Nationals in Sheffield, England and was 8th fastest overall from 81 Female swimmers.

Distance = 3km. Time = 43.29.

Achieved in a borrowed wetsuit (which never fit)!

Caz represented East Leeds Swimming Club for the event (the club her sister Philippa swims for in the UK). Her hubby Scott and sister Philippa were there supporting her at the edge of the lake along with some of the other members of East Leeds.

Full results: http://www.swimming.org/openwaterfestival/asa-national-open-water-results/.

Pan Pacific Masters Games – 4-7 November 2016

Report by Katrina Burgess

Four Viking young ladies Caz Makin, Brenda Day, Donna Campbell and Katrina Burgess attended the Pan Pacific Masters Games which were held in the Gold Coast with the swimmers competing at the Gold Coast Aquatic Centre from 4-7 November 2016.


The weather was sensational for the entire competition and perfect for sight seeing and defrosting from the Canberra cold. We spent time with our NSW Masters Swimming friends in the spectator stand.

Each Viking provided a summary of their most memorable moments from the Games experience.


Katrina Burgess:  “I enjoyed the atmosphere that was created by the swim meet being held in an outdoor facility and had a giggle when watching the video of my backstroke and bumping from one side of the lane rope to the other. I achieved three PBs and silver medal (200m Butterfly) and 2 bronze medals (400m Backstroke, 100m Butterfly).”

Donna Campbell: Completing all 8 swims and achieving my best results in Breaststroke and of course winning silver in 400m Breaststroke. Watching everyone else achieve and celebrate their goals and spending time in the sun and surf.

Brenda Day: “Despite coming in 6th place, my highlight was my 100m Freestyle – over the moon with my time. I managed to get gold medals in 400m and 200m Butterfly, silver in 200m Individual Medley and bronze in 400m Individual Medley. In atrocious conditions, which required some serious help from Helen Reddy’s “I am woman”, I came in silver medal place in the 2.5km Ocean Swim at Mermaid Beach … Lake Burley Griffin has never seemed so inviting!”

Caroline Makin:Wonderful sunny weather, swimming outdoors and meeting a lovely kiwi in my age group in all of my Freestyle heats in the pool. The competition was exceptionally tough in the the F45-49 age group, but managed to achieve medals in 400m Breaststroke with a massive PB – Silver, 50m Breaststroke – Bronze and also in the 2.5k Ocean Swim – Silver + 4th Overall Female.  I was relieved to get out through the rip and the break at Mermaid Beach without getting swept back to shore or losing my goggles and finishing 4th overall female just behind the top 3 – it was a close swim the whole way with the top 4 females finishing within 1 minute of each other and 6 minutes ahead of the next swimmer.  The chop was big and the buoys were very small … which made navigation extremely challenging!

Results for the pool events available at http://mastersgames.com.au/ppmg/sports/swimming/ and for the ocean swims at http://mastersgames.com.au/ppmg/sports/swimming-ocean-swim/.