Andy Donaldson Completes a Fast Crossing of the North Channel
On September 19th, Scottish marathon swimmer Andy Donaldson swam the North Channel from Donaghadee, Northern Ireland to Portpatrick, Scotland in 9 hours 13 minutes, the fastest North Channel crossing of 2022 and only 4 minutes shy of the channel record. He became the first Scottish man to successfully complete the crossing between Northern Ireland and Scotland.
He explains, “The 35 km swim is considered by many to be the toughest channel swim in the world due its unpredictable weather, cold waters, and lion’s mane jellyfish.
I underestimated the impact of the cold on my swimming, but attribute much of the success of the day to our team. I struggled badly with the cold…my muscles were ceasing at the 3-hour mark. I would not have made it across had it not been for the amazing efforts and support of my crew.”
The Perth City swimmer believes there are parallels between marathon swimming and life, sharing that his experience was a reminder that “like life, things don’t always go to plan and we need the help of others.”
This swim is a successful follow-up to Donaldson’s English Channel crossing one month earlier, where he swam to a new British record time of 8 hours flat. In an interesting twist of fate, Marc Newman was his observer. It was Newman’s British record that Donaldson broke. He is aiming to complete the Oceans Seven in one year and under the existing record for fastest cumulative time of 64 hours 35 minutes, all for a cause close to his heart: mental health.
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