Courtesy of Jacqueline Mcclelland, North Channel, Northern Ireland-Scotland.

No two races in the open water swimming world are the same.

Even the same swim over the same course in the same venue is usually different year to year – especially in the notoriously fickle North Channel between Northern Ireland and Scotland.

So it makes sense that many awards given to swimmers in the open water world are creatively different and unique.

Jacqueline McClelland explains how the Infinity Channel Swimming and Piloting Services uses a gorgeous slice of cherrywood that was cut in Ireland.

The cherrywood is used as the baseplate for the prestigious award presented to the South End Rowing Club in San Francisco that celebrates the successes of its swimmers across the North Irish Channel. The plaque will have additional plats added when additional swimmers achieve future successes on this channel.

The swimmers who are currently listed include Cameron Bellamy of South Africa (12 hours 22 minutes 3 seconds on July 14th 2016), Steve Walker of the USA (11 hours 19 minutes on August 14th 2016), Andrew McLaughlin of the USA (14 hours 20 minutes 24 seconds on July 14th 2016), and Kim Chambers of New Zealand (13 hours 6 minutes on September 2nd 2014).

May Mother Nature always grant you safe passage.”

Pictured above are Infinity Channel Swimming event safety officer Patricia McParland, Event Director Pádraig Mallon, and Jacqueline McClelland with John Simms of the South End Rowing Club.

For unique awards from the SCAR Swim Challenge in Arizona (belt buckles), visit here.

For unique awards from the Race For The Conch Eco-SeaSwim in Turks & Caicos (conch trophies), visit here.

For unique awards from the Kingdom Swim in Vermont (walking sticks and woodals), visit here.

For unique awards given to Ice Kilometers swimmers at the IISA Ireland National Championships (paper crowns), visit here.

For unique awards given to Triple Crowners (English Channel + Catalina Channel + Around Manhattan Island), visit here.

For unique awards given by the Marathon Swimmers Federation (MSF Spork + MSF Navigator Award), visit here.

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