Swimrun Australia is back after a three-year hiatus, with its Sydney East event set down for Saturday, 29 April 2023.
The event will see participants, in teams of two, tackle either the 16km traditional long course event or a new 5km short course event around Sydney Harbour’s scenic eastern suburbs with the Opera House, Sydney Harbour and South Head as the backdrop.
This year the event is under the new and exciting ownership of Andre Slade, who many swimmers will know from his involvement in ocean swimming.
“After seven years and four amazing events, Adriel Young, the founder of Swimrun Australia, has decided to move over to Sweden with his young family,” said Mr Slade.
“This posed the perfect opportunity for me to take over and continue to carry the business into the future and at the same time grow the sport on Australian shores.
“Through my business OceanFit, which also runs oceanswims.com, I am excited to be able to carry on Adriel’s legacy and take the sport to the next level.”
Mr Slade himself has a passion for the Swimrun Australia event and he shared his personal story of conquering the inaugural event with his now-wife, Juliann, when relaunching the event.
“Personally, my initial introduction to the Swimrun Australia event was as a participant in the 2016 event with my then-girlfriend, and now wife, Juliann,” said Mr Slade.
“It is quite the story but the gist of it is I wanted to enjoy the beautiful scenery of the course but I found out pretty quickly that I wasn’t allowed to and had to get going because ‘it was a race’.
Find out the whole story of Mr Slade’s first Swimrun Australia experience here.
“The race was great though and I had a great time – and despite finding out how competitive my girlfriend was, I still married her.”
Mr Slade has big ideas to grow the sport of swimrun in Australia with an array of new and exciting features being added to this event as well as new events.
“For the most part this event is going to mirror the successful events of the past, however, we are adding two exciting new features into it,” said Mr Slade.
“The first is we are introducing a 5km short course event which will take teams to Nielsen Park and back.
“We are hoping to entice some young gun athletes and those who feel the traditional long course event is too long, to get involved and enjoy the beauty of swimrun.
“The second is we have modified the minimum ages to allow the talented young athletes to compete. Now you only have to be 14 years old to participate in the short course and 15 years old to take on the long course.
“On top of that we are also looking to introduce new events throughout the country as well as looking to expand out to New Zealand and the Pacific.
“We already have work underway to launch new urban Swimrun Australia events in greater Sydney and Queensland later this year, which is very exciting.”
What is a swimrun?
A swimrun is an adventure race that involves participants running and swimming over a race course that involves multiple swim and run stages.
Swimrun started as an extreme endurance sport and has had rapid growth in the Nordic countries in the last ten years. The sport has grown to become an established sport with a respected reputation.
Typically participants don’t change clothing in transitions as in other multi-sports such as triathlon. All equipment used by participants has to be carried all the way to the finish line.
Swimrun is not about individual performance but rather a team effort as you race in a team of two and can never be more than 10m apart.
What’s the race environment like?
A swimrun race usually takes part over the ocean, lakes, trails, paths, rocks and roads.
What equipment do you need?
Most swimrunners wear a wetsuit, shoes, goggles, whistle, swim cap, pull buoy and paddles.
If you do choose to wear all of the above equipment you must ensure that all the equipment you start with is carried throughout the entire course to the finish line. Yes, that means, you swim with your shoes on and run with your wetsuit on!
For more information on Swimrun Australia: Sydney East and to enter, visit swimrun.com.au.