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SWIM THE WORLD LORNE PIER TO PUB, AUSTRALIA


PUB CRAWL


The Lorne Pier to Pub event has become the most popular ocean swim in the world. Tom Gallagher explains why.





Australia has a heritage in swimming almost unlike any other nation on Earth. Physically, geographically and


psychologically, swimming – particularly ocean swimming – is as important a part of Australian culture as beer and Pom-bashing! This vast continental state is governed by the seas, and teems with open water swimming events, of which the Lorne Pier to Pub swim is among the most iconic. And, for now at least, it's the world's largest ocean swimming event. Situated at Lorne Beach, two hours south of Melbourne (along Victoria's glorious Great Ocean Road), The GMHBA Lorne Pier to Pub, to give it its full title, is a 1.2km point-to-point course organised by the Lorne Surf Life Saving Club. In 2012, its 32nd anniversary, 5,000 swimmers took to the sea and wrote another chapter in the history books of this legendary swim.


Lorne has changed much from its inception as a simple challenge among Surf Life Saving Club members (see our Surf lifesaving feature in this issue, on page 52). Today, it is one of the most sought- aſt er entries in the swimming calendar. In 1998 the event made the record books as the largest ocean swim, when over 3,000 people


NEED TO KNOW


○ Where: Lorne Pier to Pub, Australia ○ What: 1.2km from the Lorne Pier to the LSLS clubhouse ○ When: 12 January 2013 ○ Who: Mixed abilities. Contestants must register for a ballot to take part.


○ See: lornesurfclub.com.au


took to the water. Now, celebrities, politicians and even former Olympians – including Australian sporting legend Kieren Perkins – have taken on the challenge. Quite why the event is so popular is not immediately obvious. Aſt er all, it's not the longest, it's not the hardest and it's certainly


The Lorne Pier to Pub Swim has become a major event in the global open water calendar


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