2012 Apple Open Water

Strong competition in perfect waters at the OMSC Apple Open Water Invitational

Winner of the 500m women’s race, thirteen year old Jamie Lee Twamley-Hellard, with OMSC Meet Manager Laura Garrett on her right (in green) and Tracey Sutton of OMSC working as a volunteer at the event. OMSC provides volunteer support to the swim leg of the Pushor Mitchell Kelowna Apple Triathlon providing an ideal opportunity to stage the Kelowna Apple Open Water Swim Invitational during the same weekend. (Photo credit: William Burgher)

KELOWNA, BC.- About 50 swimmers ranging in age from 13 to 68 competed in the Kelowna Apple Open Water Swim Invitational this weekend hosted by Okanagan Masters Swim Club (OMSC). Participants from British Columbia, Alberta and the United States competed in a 500 metre, 1.5 kilometre and a five kilometre event in ideal swimming conditions at Tugboat Beach in Okanagan Lake. The water temperature was a balmy 24 degrees Celsius.

Leading for most of the race, Glenn Carlsen (55) of Calgary claimed the overall title in the strenuous five kilometre swim in a time of 1:09:21.92, a half minute ahead of his wife Jeanne Carlsen (54) who took second place overall. The undisputable queen of the “Apple Open Water”, Jeanne captured the women’s crown in a time of 1:09:52.14

From left to right: Leaders in the five kilometre event at the Kelowna Apple Open Water Swim Invitational: Glenn Carlsen, Jeanne Carlsen, Karlyn Elford, Rod Craig and Brian Coote (Photo credit: Jeanette Hoft)

Glenn said, “It was really a good race today, the temperature of water was perfect, conditions were perfect and the markers were great.” Commenting on their swimming rivalry he said, “Jeanne is one of the toughest people to train with and one of the toughest people to race against!” Jeanne commented, ” Glenn was just better than me on the turns and markers – and that’s how he got me.”

Rod Craig (52), of Vancouver came third overall in a time of 1:11:02.15 with young Karlyn Elford (19) of the University of Alberta Swim Team finishing in fourth position in 1:15:22.83. Results show that age is no factor in the sport of open water swimming.

The men’s 500m was won by

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Kelowna’s Daniel Frost (44) in 8:17.59 with young Jamie Lee Twamley-Hellard (13) from Calgary, the first girl across the line in 8:30.36. Jamie Lee was joined in the 500m by her mother, ex-pro golfer, Jackie Twamley-Hellard. Two fifteen year olds showed their mastery in the 1.5km with Alex Diaz from West Kelowna’s Liquid Lightning placing first overall in a time of 19:31.72 and Laura Kissack of the Duncan Stingrays Swim Team first women across the line in a time of 24:16.39.

The Kelowna Apple Open Water Swim Invitational was sanctioned by SwimBC in accordance with FINA rules. SwimBC Executive Director Mark Schuett, who attended the event said, “Following the spectacular performance by Richard Weinberger of Victoria, BC who received a bronze medal in the ten kilometre marathon open water swimming event at the 2012 Summer Olympics in London, and the hosting of the first FINA World Junior Open Water Swimming Championships in Niagara this weekend, open water swimming in Canada is expected to grow exponentially amongst swimmers of all ages!”.

The Kelowna Apple Open Water Swim Invitational has been hosted by OMSC for several years, and has the potential to become a national or even international event. As Schuett explains, “I think the calibre is there… the infrastructure provided as part of the Kelowna Apple Triathlon , the staff, everything here is world class. So it is just a question of how we draw world-class athletes to the venue.”

Overall swim results will be posted on the Okanagan Masters Swim Club’s website on Sunday evening at http://okmasters.com/meets/2012-apple-open-water-invitational

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