Courtesy of New Zealand Herald, Cook Strait, New Zealand.

Precocious pair, Caitlin O’Reilly and John Gatlin are.

Back in 2004, Gatlin was a 13-year-old boy who crossed the Cook Strait from the South Island to the North Island in a fast 8 hours minutes.

A few days ago, Gatlin guided another precocious swimmer, 12-year-old Caitlin O’Reilly in the opposite way across the Cook Strait. Her time of 7 hours 19 minutes was quick and eclipsed the record for the youngest female by Stephanie Bennington in 2007.

I’m pretty proud of myself,” O’Reilly told the New Zealand Herald. “It was long and tiring. When I was swimming in the dark, I got a bit worried. I was fine most of the way. I just couldn’t see in the dark. I didn’t like swimming in the dark.”

Gatfield explained further about the situation when the sun set. “There were some super tough points when it started to get dark. The sun goes down and it gets cold. It’s pitch black and you’re swimming blind. She swam to a protruding rock from the cliff face, touched that, then it was all done.”

Copyright © 2008-2017 by World Open Water Swimming Association