Long-time event organiser Ron Nicholson is looking forward to the 33rd running of the Channel Challenge. G110816

Organiser Ron Nicholson hopes to again reach 500 competitors which has been the bench mark for previous years. G080816

The first female over the line last year was Rebecca Henderson (right), also fifth overall, from Berwick with second placed female Kate Murphy from Briar Hill.

The first across the line in last year’s channel challenge was Nathan Buschkuehl (left) and second overall Kazimir Boskovic.

THE 33rd Channel Challenge is shaping up to be a cracking day, with an ideal start time and a great day of activities planned when it returns Saturday, February 18.
The tide-dependent aquathon will start at 2.05pm and will see competitors swim 550m from San Remo across the Western Port Channel to Newhaven, before a 2km run back over the bridge to finish at San Remo.
After first up success at the Cape Aquathon, Channel Challenge competitors will wear timing transponders with microchips on their ankles, providing split times for the swim and run legs.
Organiser Ron Nicholson of the Woolamai Beach SLSC was particularly excited for this year’s event.
“The Channel Challenge is a huge event for the entire community and I can’t wait for all the festivities to get underway,” he said.
“A later start time compared to last year makes for a more relaxed start to the day for the race goers who will be able to participate in activities like the new free yoga in the park.
“The activities will continue on stage after the race, with the normal fashion parade and tug of war.
“A moment of silence in commemoration of Michael Gordon this will be led by Federal MP Russell Broadbent, Bass MP Brian Paynter and a large contingent of Michael’s friends.”
Before the race, local six-piece band The Desmonds will hit the stage from 12.30pm.
The market will be open from 7.30am until 4pm, the carnival and animal nursery will be open from 8.30am and the race centre will be open from 8am.
Race entrants are encouraged to register online prior to the event at http://www.basscoastseries.com.au/san-remo-channel-challenge.html
This helps take stress out of the already busy schedule of the organisers on the day.
The Channel Challenge is the second event of the Bass Coast Summer Series, with the final event the Cowes Classic to follow on Sunday, March 18.