Backstairs Passage swimmer resets swim date

TRAINING SWIM: Kangaroo Island marathon swimmer Shane Sanigar and his swimming support partner 17-year-old Jakob Zeman prepare for a training swim at Penneshaw beach on Monday.
TRAINING SWIM: Kangaroo Island marathon swimmer Shane Sanigar and his swimming support partner 17-year-old Jakob Zeman prepare for a training swim at Penneshaw beach on Monday.

Marathon swimmer Shane Sanigar and his support team called off Sunday’s Backstairs Passage swim due to unfavourable weather conditions.

Mr Sanigar, together with the support boat crew, made the call just after 6am on Sunday, November 18 that the winds were too strong and the seas too choppy seas for a safe swim.

“We didn’t think that the support boat could stay alongside me safely, so we reluctantly decided to postpone the swim,” he said.

Two experienced ocean kayakers waiting at Cape Jervis that were to have paddled with the swim also deemed the 30km/h conditions unsafe.

But his Kangaroo Island team remains committed to the project and the target of $4000 being raised for cancer research has already been exceeded.

The team was now looking at a dodge tide day in April after the busy holiday boating season, he said.

“We chose November because the Passage is relatively quiet, so now we will wait until about April,” he said.

Mr Sanigar on Monday morning was on his way to a training swim at Penneshaw beach.

Alongside him was his swimming support partner 17-year-old Jakob Zeman, with whom he works at the Penneshaw IGA supermarket.

It is hoped that Jakob, with continued training, might be able to swim more the 17.4km distance with Shane, if not all of it.

A wetsuit ordered for Jakob did not arrive in time for Sunday’s swim so that was going to limit his time in the water.

Mr Sanigar will also continue to liaise with Ocean Guardian, the manufacturer of Shark Shield technology, to use one their devices for the swim, possibly the new BOAT01 device.

The former English Channel swimmer remains committed to swimming the Passage without a shark cage and wetsuit.

TRAINING SWIM: Kangaroo Island marathon swimmer Shane Sanigar and his swimming support partner 17-year-old Jakob Zeman prepare for a training swim at Penneshaw beach on Monday.

TRAINING SWIM: Kangaroo Island marathon swimmer Shane Sanigar and his swimming support partner 17-year-old Jakob Zeman prepare for a training swim at Penneshaw beach on Monday.