The swim at Mona Vale is held towards the end of June each year. It comprises a short swim of 1.2 km from Bongin Bongin Bay around the point to Mona Vale beach. Swimmers are given the option of swimming with or without wet suit, with encouragement given to the latter. Even though the swim is held in winter, the water is usually quite warm, and on the day it was still twenty degrees. The day was lovely with plenty of sun and no wind, so that meant no wetsuit for me.
After a pleasant drive to the Northern Beaches of Sydney, I arrived at the beach. Registration was completed and so I sat in the sun soaking up the rays. The surf was flat and virtually non-existent which pleased me no end. Before long it was the turn of my wave to enter the water. I had noticed the path the earlier waves had taken, so I kept to the left hand side of the course. The water was clear and warm and a joy to swim in.
My race plan was to enjoy the swim, swim easy until about the half way point and then to try and swim harder until the finish line. As the swim developed my plan was put into place. As I rounded the point I started swimming harder and soon swam past other swimmers. I felt very strong the whole way. There was no problem navigating as there was no chop and the backdrop of the club made the finishing point easy to spot.
I crossed the finish line and was given a piece of paper with my time on it: no fancy timing chips for this swim. I was pleased with my time of just over twenty-two minutes, coming in the top seventy-five competitors. I was very happy with that placing as it was my first time in the top one hundred swimmers. So perhaps the efforts I had put into my squad training over the last few months were starting to bear fruit.
But the best part of the swim was the hot soup and bread rolls for all competitors at the finish. It was so good I went back for more. Fantastic to be part of a lovely swim with warm friendly volunteers from the local surf club. I would definitely do this swim again.