Huge turnout for Butterfield Bank Sea Swim

Swim Association pledges $5 from every entry to Cayman Loves Children

It has developed into one of Cayman’s most popular sporting events and the latest edition of the Butterfield Bank 800m Sea Swim showed that it is still growing. The recent Seven Mile Beach event drew more than 100 swimmers.

Butterfield Bank Sea Swim

More than 100 swimmers took part in the annual Butterfield Bank Sea Swim held on Seven Mile Beach.
Photo: Guy P. Harrison

‘I was blown away by the turnout,’ said Bill McFarland, one of the organizers. ‘I have been concerned lately that the number of open water swimmers participating in our swims was decreasing. Obviously those fears were unfounded.’

McFarland says the swim was a memorable outing for participants. Even the local sea life got into the spirit. ‘We had a large number of sea creatures in the water to look at while we were competing,’ said McFarland. ‘There was a spotted eagle ray in the water that swam ahead of the lead swimmers for about 100 meters. The visibility was crystal clear.’

Brett Fraser added another big win to his resume, crossing the line first overall in 10 minutes and 21 seconds. Peter Stasiuk was a strong second in 10:25. Andrew Smiley turned in a fine performance to take the third spot in 10:39.

Summer Flowers was the fastest female, clocking a swift 10:47. Brigitte Tomascik (10:51) was second and Lara Butler (11:55) third.

The big turnout and fast times were not the only highlights of the day, however. The Cayman Islands Amateur Swimming Association and the Butterfield Bank Sea Swim organizers pledged $5 from every entry fee to Cayman Loves Children.

Cayman Loves Children is a local organization that raises awareness and funds to aid children in extreme poverty in the developing world. All funds raised go to UNICEF annually, said a spokesperson. Their Web site is: