Il Capello in Italia

A busy weekend for Il Capello.  Accompanied by Kieran Murphy, De Hat went all Italian-like and did another Ironman.

Nice one, Kieran 🙂

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Hat journeys

It’s been a while since we’ve taken note of the many journeys The Hat is taking.  Last week I visited d’Island down West to give them some moral support.  I was delighted to see two swimmers emerging from the water at the slip wearing green Myrtleville hats.  Great to see our #supporttheweakercounties initiative in action.

Myrtlevillian regular, Noreen Fox, also swam in her green hat last week.

Noreen was a bit further West than d’Island, though.  Juneau, Alaska to be precise.  See that white stuff on the hills there?  Snow.  Seriously – snow. 

That’s not the impressive one, though. Hands up who else has been swimming with an iceberg?

Noreen is now prepared for Winter swimming with Denis and his adoring Mnás 🙂

Seal attacks!!! Kindof. Sorta. Maybe, like.

Consternation in Myrtleville this morning!  Kerfuffle! Discombobulation! Mad stuff altogether.

I was plodding along out by the corner at Bunnyconnellan when I saw three swimmers approaching.  At speed.  I mean – speed.  It was the intrepid trio of Bernie, Jim and Trev.  I turned around to head back to the beach – with them about 200 metres behind me.  I was 500m out.  As you can see from the first picture below (that’s me there in the distance on the left) they passed me – at speed, like – and were a good 200m ahead of me hitting the beach. 

Now, I’m slow.  I know that.  I’m fine with it.  I’m not that slow, though.  They’re not more than twice as fast as me.  Not on a normal day.  This was NOT a normal day.  The trio – they shouted – had suffered repeated, vicious, co-ordinated and just generally feckin awful seal attacks by up to nine seals.  It started at two but they were definitely talking about nine by the end of it.  I didn’t see any myself.  Must have been going too slowly.

I think the second picture below is Trevor explaining how close they had come to near death at the hands of Sealus Attackus Beastus.  Either that or he’s saying how big the seal was – which would take a bit away from the drama of the attack, to be honest, if it was that size.  I say IT, but I mean THEM – THEM, dozens of THEM.  You can see Bernard staring out to sea anxiously in case THEY were coming on still.  Terrifying, like.  No way was it just a couple of ould seals out for a quiet swim.  No way.  Attack.  Definitely an attack.

Despite their horrific experience, the trio posed for a picture with a fan (sound, lads) and then made their way shakingly up the beach, discussing googling “Seal Attacks” and whether warning signs should be put up.  Mad stuff.  Mad.

BE CAREFUL OUT THERE! Watch out for dogfish too.  Now THEY are vicious, I can tell ya that.  Don’t start me about dogfish.

News from Eilis Burns

Hi Guys,

All good things come to an end…but every end brings new beginnings, new opportunities and exciting times!

I am pleased to announce my new beginning in The Leisureworld Group. This will be formally announced next week by Leisureworld, but I wanted you to be the first to hear.

Obviously I would love to see you in the groups, but I understand that times and venues may not suit everyone. Price is also beyond my control, and all bookings go through Leisureworld Bishopstown when they open next week. 

Adult Advanced Masters Classes are as follows:

MONDAY

LEISUREWORLD BISHOPSTOWN

6pm-6.45pm.   Adult Intermediate / Advanced.

7pm-7.50pm.   Adult Advanced.

TUESDAY

LEISUREWORLD CHURCHFIELD

6.30am-7.30am.  Adult Advanced.

WEDNESDAY

LEISUREWORLD CHURCHFIELD

6.30am-7.30am      Adult Advanced.

10am-10.45am       Adult Intermediate.

10.45am-11.30am  Adult Pre Intermediate.

THURSDAY

LEISUREWORLD BISHOPSTOWN

6.30am- 7.30am.   Adult Advanced.

6pm-6.45pm.  * Teen Advanced Stroke Work .

THURSDAY

DOUGLAS

8pm-8.45pm.  Adult Intermediate/ Advanced.

Thanks for all the great years in Source. As I don’t have everyone’s details I would appreciate if you would pass this on to all swimmers, but please note bookings won’t open until after Leisure World’s announcement next week. 

Yours in Sport,

Eilis Burns

Additional kids classes with Eilis will be on the LEISUREWORLD website next week.

Event Safety – from Ned Denison

Ned Denison took the time to give some thought to the responsibilities of swimmers and organisers in OW events. Well worth a read.

Event Safety

This is a consistent issue as we all need organisers and swimmers to keep this as their number one objective.

I see the two most important things as:

1. Each swimmer is up to the challenge of the swim
2. The organisers have the courage to cancel the swim (minutes before the event – if they are not 100% confident about swimmer’s safety…and swimmers to accept these calls (with gratitude).

Then we have the safety plan, the number of water-based safety boats/kayaks (and quality of the crew), check-in/out process and on shore volunteers/safety crew. While important – these two above are much more important.

Let’s start with the swimmers.

The SAFEST events require recent performance at a similar distance. The upcoming Dock swim, for example, requires:

“YOU MUST HAVE COMPLETED AT LEAST 1 X 5KMM OPEN WATER SWIM THIS YEAR TO ENTER.
DO NOT use this event as your first skins swim. If you are swimming skins, you must be properly acclimatised and have been swimming for a minimum of 2 hours consecutively this season.”

Your 5KM swim last year in Greece in 25C water doesn’t prepare you for 14C in Cork. The Dock swim isn’t a swim for you to increase your personal best distance from 2KM.

This requirement is in place for the safety of every swimmer, water-based safety crew and on-shore volunteers/safety crew. EVERY aborted swim introduces DANGER. Think about a slightly panicking 15 stone swimmer grabbing the side of a kayak. Or think about how hard it is to get that same swimmer into a rib – without seriously damaging their shoulder – or the backs of the crew. We now have a boat (with a propeller) in the swim path of others. Then you have possibly the high-speed trip to the start or finish (with the swimmer) – again along/through the swim path of others. Maybe the swimmer climbs out on the rocks (cut up and possibly bashed by waves) and a boat needs to try and get close enough to extract (is a crew member jumping out to help?). In all cases, EVERY aborted swim draws safety EYES off the rest of the swimmers – and lowers the safety cover for all.

It isn’t hard – get yourself to the ocean ahead of the swim and do your 5KM. You want safe? How about in 1 meters of water (back and forth) at Inchydoney Beach.

There are other events (in rivers, along gentle beaches, point to point, with more safety craft) which will have lower qualification levels.

Or, at a different time, get your own safety rib and crew and do that same swim as your personal best. They can focus 100% on your safety.

In endless safety briefings I also talk about your condition on the day: just out of the hospital, worst chest infection, etc. The swimmer needs to do a sane self assessment before registering and before getting wet.

Then the courage of swim organisers to cancel – even at the last minute. Yes, you drove 3 hours for the swim and planned your entire weekend around the event. Rest assured that every organiser REALLY wants their event to happen. There are hundreds of things to drive a last minute cancellation: waves which are judged to increase the difficulty beyond acceptable safety for ALL the swimmers (yes – they were fine for you – but not for the least experienced 25% of the swimmers), any hint of fog, 50 meters of deep brown sea foam across the course, 2 of the 4 ribs with mechanical difficulties, 3 folks buzzing about on jet skis who will not yield, heavy rain/hail which reduces visibility, 10 swimmers show up drunk and will not accept to give the swim a miss, the water temperature dropped to 11C in the last day, oil slick, very bad farm run off, 2 big basking sharks, lion’s mane/Portuguese man of war, thousands of stinging compasses, large fishing net adrift across the course, etc.

Kudos to the Myrtleville organisers who delayed the Church Bay swim by a few days – after they warned in advance of possible severe weather. They took some abuse from a few swimmers (which is just nonsense).

Open water swimming is getting more and more popular. We have more than 150 marathon swimmers (10KM or greater epic swim) in County Cork. The events are getting more popular and larger. In order to participate SAFELY in these events, you need to have a current open water swimming resume which proves that you are up to the challenge.

You can make and increase the quality of your resume – you need to if you want to enter longer events.

Ransom Demand

The following was anonymously received (from Joanne H) this morning.

Myrtleville Musketeers, a renowned swimming fundamentalist group, have succeeded in capturing solo attemptee Brendan O’Brien. Brendan, a renowned Sandycover, is considered a valuable hostage in ongoing negotiations with Ned and his band of doggy paddling renegades. The Musketeers are striving to bring swimming back to the masses by being all inclusive, going so far as to offer them food and showers after their lap of the dazzling Dutchman.

In exchange for Brendan, The Myrtlevillains are willing to accept custody of 50, 3 legged feral goats, one misshapen Island, the installation of swimming lanes in Myrtleville by the Sandycove “swimmers” and maintenance of same, as well as the renaming of CDW to Myrtleville Fun Swim Camp with Cake.

Offers for Brendan’s release can be made via the triple axis of swimming evil: the Myrtle Turtles, Myrtleville Selkies and Myrtleville Musketeers.