Report and photograph from John Coxon.
She was also fourth home overall. But the accolade of Dee Mile Champion can only go to swimmers living within five miles of Chester's " The Cross" ( contenders for the Dee Mile Championship are not allowed to wear wet suits ) and thus the honour went to Emer McCarron of Chester Tri Club who recorded 23 minutes 46 seconds. The All Comers category was won by Warrington Dolphins Ladies Swimming Club's Michella Richards in 23 minutes 18 seconds. ( The All Comers category are those not in the Championship Category who compete without wetsuits )
The annual Dee Mile dates back to the 1922 and maintains it's historical idiosyncrasies to this day. In the early years, women were not allowed to swim with men as it was thought to be too risqué. Women were finally allowed to compete in 1969 but they were then considered "too frail" to complete the whole course and had to swim a reduced distance. In 1993, Siaron Glanrid-Jones was the first woman to complete the full mile and a quarter distances. She did it in 30:07.In 1999 overall victory was almost snatched by the ladies winner - A Reid - who was just 3 seconds behind male N. Davenport.
The Dee Mile is in not actually a mile race but a mile and a quarter and involves a deep water start opposite the Red House , a riverside hostelry that is fact is painted white. Swimmers swim downstream, with the current, from the Red House where the river bends to the left in a grand sweep ( known locally as the Crook of the Dee ) to the finish just after going under the Queens Park suspension Bridge , built the year after the inaugural race. Chester Swimming Club kept the classic event going until Chester Tri Club took over the organisation. Swimmers register at the bandstand at the beautifully restored riverside Victorian promenade the Groves before being leisurely transported up stream to the Red House in one of the town's large tourist pleasure boats. As well as Chester Tri Club , there were significant entires from Warrington and Manchester Tri Clubs.
The next event in the Chester Tri Calendar is the Royles Diva Divas Triathlon , now in its fifth year , a women only short distance triathlon 750m 16km 5km and 22nd July. Visit Chester Tri Club website here for more details
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