Brac’s long haul

Long distance swimming seems to be
catching on in the Cayman Islands right now.

Last weekend seven intrepid
swimmers crossed the six miles from Cayman Brac to Little Cayman.

The Sister Islands Sea Swim was the
idea of Brac-based Felix Ebanks, 19, and Matthew McKinley, 20.

 It was inspired about a year ago by swimming colleagues,
family members and the dream to make history. They began training by themselves
right away. They had no coach but each other.

They made phone calls and sent
messages around to people asking for sponsorship.

On Sunday it all came to together,
the day after the annual 800 metres swim in Cayman Brac.

Ebanks and McKinley completed the
swim at Point of Sand, Little Cayman along with Bill McFarland (president of
the Cayman Islands Amateur Swimming Association), Alex Harling, Andrea Roach,
Joy Yeatman and Kate Alexander.

Two boats drove down beside them,
offering assistance if any problems and also Gatorade and water.

People that accompanied the swimmers
included Jason Belport (manager of Little Cayman Beach Resort), Michael Hundt
and his wife Suzanne Hunt, Robert Banks, Jennifer and Melicia Ebanks and Tishel

The swimmers stopped three times
only for a break. The approximate time of the swim was 3 hours and 20 minutes.

Tishel said: “They hope to make
this an annual event. This year they got thee sponsors; Moses Kirkconnell, Popo
Jeb’s Pizza and Little Cayman Beach Resort.”

Felix Ebanks said: “W plan to do more swims like this, such as swimming the Northside of
Cayman Brac in the years to come. It’s possible for it to be as early as next
year but with school and other events happening it’s hard to say. It’s another
dream of ours in progress.

“The swim to Little Cayman will be
an annual event. The date may be changed to a later month though because of the
weather conditions and for safety. With the right amount of sponsors it should
be bigger and better.”

As first male Bracker to finish in
the 800m swim the day before, Ebanks got free entry to the Flowers One Mile
Swim on 19 June.

“I’ve been attending it since I was
12. And Matthew has been attending it since he has moved back to the Brac.”