Courtesy of Brenton Williams, Jeffreys Bay, South Africa.

South Africa’s top female open water swimmer Michelle Weber had a strong swim in her first race of 2017 when she won the women’s 5 km swim at Marina Martinique in blustery conditions. The 5 km swim was the first event of the Eastern Cape Open Water Swim Championships yesterday.

The race was great fun. I am very happy with my time of 1:00:46 considering the harsh wind conditions, but for the first swim of the the year, I am feeling really good,” said Weber in Jeffreys Bay.

Weber will swim her primary event this morning – the 10 km marathon swim, an event that saw her compete in at the 2016 Rio Olympics. “I am just going to enjoy the race and do the best I can. We have Senior Nationals in a month’s time so my coach Valerio Cleri hasn’t tapered me for this weekend.

Open water swimming is more fun than work for me so coming to Marina Martinique this weekend has been spectacular. It’s such a beautiful venue to swim in and I can’t wait to come back for Senior Nationals which is also the World Championships qualifier.”

The men’s 5 km race was dominated by 24-year-old Nico Manoussakis who led from start to finish and won in 58:06. Both Manoussakis and Weber train under former Italian world 25 km champion Valerio Cleri who is based in South Africa and is coaching in Cape Town. “The 5 km was a great swim with some challenging areas. I was pleased with my race and am keen to see what happens with the 10 km,” said Manoussakis.

Top 5 Men’s Results
1 Nicolaos Manoussakis 58:06.3
2 Ian Venter 1:00:49.8
3 Nicolas Adam 1:02:40.8
4 Slater Black 1:02:47.6
5 Adriaan Bouwer 1:04:20.3

Top 5 Women’s Results
1 Michelle Weber 1:00:46.3
2 Amica De Jager 1:02:55.8
3 Tayla Botha 1:04:35.6
4 Carli Antonopoulos 1:05:07.3
5 Jessica Canter 1:05:23.5

Full results of the 5 km swim are here.

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