The Serpentine in London’s Hyde Park was the venue for Open Water swimming during the 2012 Olympic Games, and last weekend this famous stretch of water played host to ‘Swim Serpentine’.
This two day festival of Open Water swimming was organised by the team behind the London Marathon, comprising a mass participation one mile swim, featuring nearly 5,500 people, on Saturday, followed by the inaugural British Open Water Swimming age group championships on Sunday. West Norfolk SC’s Jenny Read and Sam Rose competed in the 13 and 14 year old joint age group races respectively over the 1.6km (1 mile) course. Jenny finished seventh in 23:01 mins, with Sam second in his event in 21:18 mins.
Nathan Wells swam in the prestigious event of the day, the 5km ‘Elite’ race. This invitation-only event featured athletes from Holland, Germany and across the UK. Wells produced a typically strong swim to finish in seventh place in a time of 59.05 mins.
Sam’s day was made by receiving his silver medal from Team GB Open Water swimmer Jack Burnell, with Jenny smiling delightedly as she posed for photos with the West Norfolk swimmers.
There was no rest for mums Sue Read and Cheryl Rose as they whisked their children back to Downham, to compete with the rest of the club in the annual Team Trophy gala that evening.