There’s going to be plenty of action going on this weekend in the Global Swim Series, with some of the world’s most iconic races taking place. The Midmar Mile takes place all weekend and the North Bondi Classic happens on Sunday. After a couple weekends without races things heat right back up with an estimated 18,000 swimmers to take part in a GSS race this weekend alone!
Previewing the two iconic races happening this weekend:
aQuelle Midmar Mile
What better way to kick off the first Global Swim Series race in South Africa than with the world’s largest open water race. The Midmar Mile is a world famous event and the gold standard for open water swimming. The event regularly attracts 16,000 swimmers each year and is in the Guinness Book of World Records for being the world’s largest swimming race. Due to the massive size of the field the event takes place over 2 days (Saturday and Sunday) with different heats of the mile long race running all weekend. The event cumulates with the elite race on Sunday afternoon. The event has, in the past, attracted some of the top open water talent on the planet to compete for the title.
This year the event celebrates its 44th year in style as Rio Olympic Champion Ferry Weertman will be in attendance to battle it out with 7 time event winner Chad Ho. Ho was also at the Rio Olympics, placing 10th just 5 seconds back of Weertman. This sets the stage for a great rematch at the Midmar Dam and should add to the already electric buzz surrounding the event. Throw in veteran American open water and pool swimmer Chip Peterson and the young South African star Mathew Meyer and it should be a very exciting field.
Expected to be at the top end of the women’s side is two-time Midmar champion and world championship silver medalist in the pool Ashley Twichell. American Lexie Kelly will also be joining the field and top British coach Sean Kelly is expected to bring his squad down as well. Most of these swimmers will also compete a week later at the Global Swim Series’ 2nd South African event, the Sanlam Cape Mile.
With a world class field, plenty of prizes and an exceptional atmosphere of thousands of swimmers, it’ll be an action packed weekend at the Midmar Dam.
North Bondi Classic
The North Bondi Classic is an absolute “must-do” do race for those in the Sydney, Australia area or those planning for an unforgettable destination race. Taking place on one of the world’s most iconic beaches, the North Bondi Classic has some of the best scenery in the world for a race. The event this weekend offers a 2km and a 1km distance with the option to do both as a combo. This year there’s even a trip to Hawaii up for grabs in a random draw as well! The water should be plenty warm. As long as the temperature doesn’t drop below 18 degrees the swim is a no-wetsuit event.