Tony Scalabrino Is Totally Onboard...His Spadavis

Tony Scalabrino Is Totally Onboard…His Spadavis

Tony Scalabrino is a 74-year-young engineer and world-class weatherman. “Tony is still the go-to man for plotting new routes and deciding on weather conditions for ocean swims,” explains Theodore Yach about the former karate specialist-turned-escort pilot.

His technical research over the years has saved swimmers many extra hours. For example, in the early 1980’s he and some University of Cape Town scientists built a model of False Bay to work out the currents when Dr Derek Yach attempted his crossing. His attempt failed due to an adverse wind, but Tony’s science enabled future swimmers to succeed. He has a calm exterior whilst piloting that belies a steely resolve.”

Scalabrino has piloted approximately 150 swimmers and his red and black boat, Spadavis, is loved and appreciated by all.

Being Sicilian, Scalabrino has been known to take matters into his own hands with errant swimmers,” Yach explains. “I was on the receiving end on one such occasion when he smacked me with a wooden paddle on my tochas on one of my early swims when I threatened to abort 400m from shore.” He holds himself up to that same drive that he aims at his swimmers. “He also holds the record for being the slowest swimmer between Robben Island and Bloubergstrand Beach, but he would never give up.”

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