Swimmers aspire to set a new record in the Ireland-Wales relay.
A group of men from Northern Ireland are attempting to break a new world record for swimming from Ireland to Wales.
In 34 hours and 25 minutes, the Oa Giants swam 116 kilometers (72 miles) from Co Wexford to the Pembrokeshire shore.
Starting early on Saturday from Carne Pier, Keith Garry, John McElroy, Colin Lindsay, Dominic Mudge, Chris Judge, and Bill Donnelly took turns swimming the St George’s Channel in a tough day and night swim.
They said they spent months preparing for the challenge by swimming in the sea and lakes in the winter, as well as mountain climbing, running, strength training, and dietary regimens, to guarantee they were at their best last weekend.
Chris Judge set out from Carne Pier, just south of Rosslare Harbour, amid ferries and fishing boats, for the first leg.
The swim was delayed by a night due to weather conditions, forcing the men to sleep in their cars, according to the Co Armagh man.
He began swimming from the Irish shore through swarms of jellyfish before becoming seasick and embarking on a harrowing night swim.
He thanked the Infinity Channel Swimming crew for their unwavering support in keeping them going.
“The beginning wasn’t pleasant; I had a horrific night swim, I struck the boat and could feel a lot of objects striking me in the water, and I had cramped up in my leg from the cold… it was the longest hour of my life, and I prayed,” he told the PA news agency.
Mr Judge had felt something hitting him in the water, which turned out to be a pod of 15 joyful dolphins “swimming belly to belly” with them, leaping and producing their distinctive high frequency whistles and clicks as Mr Garry took on the next leg.
The crew described the first land-ahoy moment at 5 a.m. on Sunday, when they saw a chain of islands ahead of mainland Wales, fueled by soup, stew, and bacon and egg butties.
They reported one of the most difficult situations. (This is a brief piece.)