She came, she swam and she easily won the first 15 km ocean swim in Samoa. Jess Evans took less than four hours, 3hrs 56mins, to swim six laps of the 2.5 km course at Saoluafata Harbour to secure her first Open Water Swim title in Samoa.
It will not be the last. Jess and partner Scott Newman, who also swam the 15 km swim, are staying on for the official Samoa Swim Series that starts today.
The 15 km distance is part of the Pacific Open Water Challenge (POWC) that precedes the Samoa Swim Series each year since 2013. POWC is a dual-swim race, 10 and 5 km distances on consecutive days.
But this year Samoa Events opted to add the 15 distance in order to meet the demand for longer races. Swimmers have the option of swimming 10 km or 15 km and must also swim the shorter 5 km race the next day.
The 15/10km swims were held at Saoluafata Harbour in Anoama’a, four competed in the 15km and twelve in the 10km race on Monday. There were 18 swimmers who turned up to swim the 5 km open ocean race from Sauano to Falefa on Tuesday.
Evans’ combined time for her two distances, 15 and 5 kms was 5hrs 30mins 24secs. Second placed in the combined 15/5km combination was Christina Harris, a regular of Samoa Swims, her total time was 6hrs 16mins 47secs. The two women totally outshone the two men in the race, Jess’ partner Scott Newman and another Samoa regular, Mike Cochrane.
Evans is returning next March to swim Apolima Strait, Upolu to Savaii. She loves Samoa and the Swim Events that take place here.
In the shorter combination of 10/5km it was Dan Feisst of Auckland who won the men’s division in a total time of 4:38:54. His 10km swim was just over 3hrs at 3:02:00. Kirsty Craig, also of Auckland won the women’s POWC 10/5km race in a total time of 5:12:56.
With POWC now done and dusted for another year, the Swim races move on to the three official swims of the Samoa Series Swims. Swim sites this year are at Sinalei Reef Resort, Manono Island and Sheraton Resort.
Pacific Open Water Challenge
Jess Evens (Aust) 3:55:00
Christina Harris (NZL) 4:35:30
Scott Newman (Aust) 4:49:30
Mike Cochrane (NZL) 4:57:30
Dan Feisst (NZL) 3:02:00
Kirsty Craig (NZLD) 3:22:30
Michele Pezutti (Aust) 3:28:15
Roger Matheson (NZL) 3:43:00
Chris Nelson (NZL) 3:44:00
Ronny Iosefatu (SAM) 3:51:00
Samasoni Nimarota Maoga (SAM) 4:28:00
Petrina Quinn (Aust) 4:39:00
Siliga Sani Muliaumaseali’i (UK) 4:39:00
Peter Rice (UK) DNF completed 7.5km
Luaipou Pimoe (SAM) DNF completed 7.5km
Manaia To’alepai (SAM) DNF completed 7.5km
Jack Burnham (Aust) DNF completed 1 lap
5km Results – Sauano to Falefa
Jess Evans 1:25:34
Chris Dunn 1:32:41
Dan Feisst 1:36:54
Christina Harris 1:41:17
Jack Burnham 1:44:47
Scott Newman 1:45:20
Mike Cochrane 1:48:06
Kirsty Craig 1:50:26
Samasoni Nimarota Maoga 2:07:20
Chris Nelson 2:09:33
Peter Rice 2:29:00
Petrina Quinn 2:48:18
Siliga Sani Muliaumasealii 2:48:18
Roger Matheson (NZL) DNF
Bruce Wacker (USA) DNF
Lucy Cotterill (NZL) DNF