Aussie, Aussie, Aussie, Oi, Oi, Oi – Mainstone and Bell champs at Waikiki Roughwater Swim

  1 Mike Lewis | September 02nd, 2013 | Featured, News, Open Water

It’s one of the world’s most iconic open water swimming events and this year Rhys Mainstone and Miranda Bell grabbed the titles at the Waikiki Roughwater Swim.  The conditions were, as is most often the case here for the race, ideal – water around 79 degrees, sunny and just a slight chop. On the men’s side Mainstone and George O’Brien both hit it hard right from the start and took a clear lead going into the first buoy.  From that point it was just a matter of tactics.  Mainstone, who won this race last year tried to take his competitors into deeper water in hopes that the clear deep water may spook them (but the dolphins, sea turtles and other tropical marine life made the swim “mind blowingly cool” as one swimmer put it).  But when it came down to the end of the 2.4 mile race it was Mainstone’s final burst of speed that gave him the clear win 48:10 over 48.22.

For the women Miranda Bell took a quick lead over the women’s field but it was fellow Australian open water standout Luane Rowe – now living in Oakland California – who called upon her experience and closed the gap but couldn’t over take Bell at the end. Bell won the women’s overall title in a time of 53:05.

Japan’s swimming superstar, Kosuke Kitajima, who’s obviously well known for his Olympic gold medal performances in the breaststroke who won his age division and was 13th overall.

Hawaii’s own Kacy Johnson, a former standout swimmer at Kamehameha Swim Club, now swimming at the University of Hawaii was the top local finisher placing 5th overall.

But the big story was the fun, camaraderie and ‘ultra aloha/double shaka/ohana’ spirit that makes this a race that draws swimmers from around the globe.  If you love open water swimming, this is one race you have to put on your ‘to do’ list without question.

Check out the full results here

Nice Start - 2013 Waikiki Roughwater Swim. Mike Lewis

Fast open water swimming from the start. (photo: Mike Lewis, Ola Vista Photography)


  1. Jg says:

    So that is 8 of the top 12 are Australian then Kitajima.

    Normally I would say Australia won that race but I have not added up all the Americans back in the field. If we give each place descending by a point then I think those winners would be swamped by the sheer brilliance of those stretching out far behind.

    I am going to write to Mr Lord if he dares suggest Australia won. I am . I am.

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About Mike Lewis

Mike Lewis

Mike Lewis has nearly three decades of open water swimming experience as both an athlete and coach. He has worked with a wide range of athletes including Olympians and World Record Holders. Mike was as an administrator in the U.S. Olympic movement for 10 years and was a team director for the 2000 Olympic games. Mike himself is an avid swimmer and has notched several top 10 rankings in US Masters swimming. Mike and his wife Cynthia founded "Did you swim today?" – a global gathering place for swimmers to share their positive experiences in the pool and the open water. Read More »