Why plans for Hartlepool team to swim the English Channel have come at just the right time for one member

A determined team is stepping up its training for a charity Channel swim - and it’s latest member has told how the bid has come at exactly the right time.

Saturday, 20th April 2019, 6:00 am
Updated Saturday, 20th April 2019, 9:54 am
Some of the Channel team pictured preparing for the challenge.
Some of the Channel team pictured preparing for the challenge.

The team from the Tri Life Warriors triathlon club in Hartlepool is going to swim the English Channel in June.

Stuart Brown is the latest team member and has just returned from 18 months of injury and illness.

Alex Vizireanu and Sean David, two of the team members.

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He said: “It’s all going well so far. Plenty of sea dips through the winter and I’m building fitness in the pool, running and cycling.”

Along with colleague Sean David, preparation has included a recent 10k obstacle course and he said: “Although it isn’t swimming, it is still good for our fitness (and great fun).”

Sean said: “I got into open water swimming a few years ago to lose weight and I love it. From a 1 mile swim in 2016 at The Great North Swim, I’ve done open water swims up to 5k at last years Great Scottish Swim. I’m looking forward to taking on the open waters swimmer’s dream. The Channel!”

Fellow team member David Fox told us: “I joined the Warriors going back in 2017 with aspirations of getting fit and losing weight. After a few months, the team’s enthusiasm got the better of me and I aimed for my first triathlon (never really ran or biked before). This year, our group will conquer the Channel I’m sure.”

Linda Brown gets some practice in for this summer's challenge.

Fellow team member Linda Brown said: “More than a year ago I decided to make a list of 60 things to do before I’m 60. Channel swim was in there so when a team mate from the most awesome Tri team ever asked for volunteers to join him in a swim there was no question I was doing it.”

To prepare for the Channel bid, they are battling through the waves off Hartlepool for anything up to five hours at a time in waters which sometimes only reach 13C.

They have their Channel swim slot booked for the first week in June when they will head to Dover and team up with the skipper of a boat they have hired.

Then, it’s a waiting game for the skipper to say the water currents, weather and conditions are all right for the swim to start at a point near Dover ferry port

Stuart Brown, the newest member of the Hartlepool team which is aiming to swim the English Channel this summer.

Alex Vizireanu is no stranger to Channel attempts. “I guess this makes me a bit of a veteran,” he told the Mail, and said he was “very grateful to be part of this brilliant team and I’m sure we will smash this if we get the right conditions. Our pilot Eddie Spelling is very experienced and he is going to give us the best chance to make this happen. Meanwhile we do the laps in the pool and hopefully get in the sea as much as possible until then.” The team is aiming to raise money for research into motor neurone disease.

Warriors founder Matt Turnbull said: “We have chosen MND as the charity as it is very close to the hearts of some of the team.”

To find out more about Tri Life, visit its Facebook page at The Warriors - Tri-life Triathlon.

In training for the Channel swim.