Congratulations to Robert Drysdale, tax, trusts and wealth planning specialist at Rooks Rider Solicitors, for successfully swimming one of the busiest maritime lanes in the world, the Strait of Gibraltar.
The challenge, considered one of the toughest for an open water swimmer and one of the so-called ‘Ocean’s Seven’, took place from Europe to Africa on 4 September 2014 under the auspices of the Gibraltar Swimming Association.
Escorted by two guide boats, Robert and friend Don Perrott completed the 18.6 kilometer endurance swim from Tarifa on the Costa de La Luz of Spain to El Vaar in Morocco in 4 hours and 55 minutes, despite strong winds and an unforgiving easterly tide.
Robert, who swam the English Channel solo in 2008, said of the swim: “I had thought that being around half the distance of the Channel swim, this challenge would be more straightforward. But memory of these types of experiences can be quite unreliable, so I found it tougher than anticipated, especially as we had to sprint most of the way owing to the strong winds, rapid currents and choppy seas.”
Less than 500 people have successfully completed the crossing (without a wetsuit) since Mercedes Gleitze of the United Kingdom became the first ever in 1928.
“It was an incredible experience,” Robert continues. “I count myself extremely fortunate to have had the opportunity to complete the swim. For now though, I am just happy to be on dry land and, as memory of the experience fades, I am sure I will start planning my next challenge.”
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