Strong turnout for second Rotary Swimarathon

Emily Coupe, aged nine, hitches a ride on Oma Margaret Mullan.

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Rotarians, from left, Dan Healey, Don Eagleson and Roger Owles. Orewa Rotary president, Karen Bonnici, left, with secretary Sandy McInnes. Brian Mullan, left, with Rodney MP Mark Mitchell. Orewa Sharks - winners of the Basil Blackham Memorial Challenge Cup. Photos, Paul Conroy, Portraits by Design

The second annual Rotary Swimarathon, held on June 30 at the Stanmore Bay Pool & Leisure Centre, saw more than double the number of participants jump in the pool for charity.

A total of 47 teams and 274 swimmers swam a total of 7038 laps (175.95 kilometres, or the equivalent of Auckland CBD to Tirau) and pledged almost $16,000 in sponsorship. Generation Homes Rotary Swimarathon chair, Rotarian Brian Mullan, says the final returns could increase that figure.

The event involves teams of up to six swimmers who swim as many laps of the pool as they can in 45 minutes in support of one of the nominated charities.

Rodney MP Mark Mitchell led Team Platypus, comprising family members, and also swam in support of a young team that was short of swimmers.

This year’s proceeds will go to several local organisations, including Red Beach Surf Lifesaving Club, Orewa Surf Lifesaving Club, Orewa Sea Scouts and Coastguard Hibiscus.

For the first time, surf clubs, swim and water polo clubs competed for the Basil Blackham Memorial Challenge Cup. It was won by the Orewa Sharks, whose members swam 185 timed competitive laps in 45 minutes, beating the next best team, Charlie’s Angels, by a convincing 11 laps.

An awards evening will be held on August 10.

Along with key sponsors Generation Homes, the charitable event was also supported by a large range of other local businesses.

The Hibiscus and Bays Local Board provided the venue free of charge.



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