Three 2012 Redhouse River Mile Champions are about to make Olympic history as Port Elizabeth’s first ever open water swimmer, Jessica Roux, takes to the waters of Hyde Park’s Serpentine in London tomorrow afternoon.
Roux, a former Collegiate High School head girl and current Redhouse River Mile Ladies Champion is joined by River Mile Men’s Champion Troyden Prinsloo in Team SA at the London 2012 Olympics whilst River Mile Disabled winner, Kevin Paul, heads the countries medal hopes in the Paralympic Games which take place immediately after the Olympic Games.
With eyes firmly set on the 2016 Olympics, Jess earned a 2012 Olympic call-up after dethroning SA open water swimming legend Natalie Du Toit at an international meet in Portugal earlier in the year. “It’s a bit surreal but an exciting moment in my career.” said Roux who moved to Durban to train under National Swim Coach Graham Hill for the 2016 and 2020 Olympics.
Roux became keen on her open water swimming after taking part in the 2006 Nelson Mandela Bay Ocean Racing Series, an event which she dominated till moving to Durban at the end of 2010.
Open water swimming is a very unpredictable sport and Roux will be keen to gain as much experience as possible in tomorrows 10km race in what is considered her bonus Olympics. A top 20 finish will put this young South African swimmer in a great position to springboard onto the World open water swimming circuit ahead of the 2016 Olympics.
The men’s and women’s 10km Marathon Swimming events are both straight finals, with all athletes competing in each race together.
Women’s 10km Marathon Final is at 12:00 (London Time, Add one hour for SA time) on 9 August and the Men’s 10km Marathon Final is at 12:00 on 10 August
At the 2008 Olympics, the marathon swim was held in a rowing basin, the Shunyi Olympic Rowing-Canoeing Park for the first time in the modern Olympics. The 2008 Women’s Results were: Gold – Larisa Ilchenko (Russia) 1:59:27.7, Silver – Keri-Anne Payne (Great Britain) 1:59:29.2 and Bronze – Cassandra Patten (Great Britain) 1:59:31.0
The Olympic 10km marathon swim will consist of six clockwise loops of 1.67 km on the Serpentine Lake situated in London’s Hyde Park. See the course below:
Editors Notes: We have established that Peter Williams was Port Elizabeth’s first ever Olympic Swimmer. Peter was in the USA when South Africa were, at a late stage, granted entry into the 1992 Olympics. Peter set a world record in the 50 metre freestyle. He placed third in the 50 metre freestyle at the 1994 Commonwealth Games, and fourth at the 1992 Summer Olympics. At the Olympics he also competed on the South African teams in 4×100 metre freestyle relay and 4×100 metre medley relay, but without reaching the final.
Article source: http://mype.co.za/new/2012/08/jessica-rouxs-marathon-swim/