Young Phillip Ryan and experienced Kirsten Cameron (shown on left) won the men's and women's 10K New Zealand Open Water Championships in Wellington this week.
18-year-old Phillip from Waterhole, Auckland won in 2:8:06 over Casey Glover and his brother Daniel Ryan. Kirsten Cameron, a 35-year-old mother from Waikato, was first in the women's field in 2:29:32 over 17-year-old Alannah Jury and 15-year-old Stephanie Bennington.
The four-lap 10K course in Oriental Parade was beautiful to observe, but tough to navigate with a strong wind whipping up the waves. Although he could not catch Phillip, Casey took advantage of the rough water conditions to place second. Casey has the fastest crossing of treacherous Cook Strait.
An impressed Swimming New Zealand's Open Water Programme Manager Philip Rush said, "The conditions were definitely very testing and not what they would normally experience in open water events. Phillip Ryan has really got some potential. He will head to the Australian Championships where we will have Kane Radford back from the US to also compete and we can see them go head-for-head. That will be important as it is the selection for the world championships for both Australia and New Zealand."
Rush continued with his praises, "Kirsten was too strong today but I am impressed with the potential from [second-place] Jury and [third-place] Bennington, along with some other good young swimmers. This is an event that we can do well at internationally. Now it is an Olympic event, we need to attract more of our swimmers to open water swimming and begin to build on some of the talent we have."
1. Phillip Ryan (Waterhole, Auckland) 2:08.06
2. Casey Glover (SwimZone, Wgtn) 2:14.57
3. Daniel Ryan (Waterhole) 2:20.27,
1. Kirsten Cameron (Ace,Waikato) 2:29.32
2. Alannah Jury (North Shore) 2:33.14
3. Stephanie Bennington (Capital, Wgtn) 2:36.01
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