Rottnest Channel Swim

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Dieter Loeliger, preparing for the Rottnest Channel Swim
The Rottnest Channel Swim is one of the world's iconic open water swims and is one of the longest marathon swims in the world. The 19.7 km solo and relay ocean swim is held in Western Australia every February. The Rottnest Channel Swim starts at Cottesloe Beach and finishes at Thomson Bay on Rottnest Island. The event categories for competitors are include (1) Solo, (2) Duo - teams of 2, (3) Team - teams of 4, and (4) Lavan Legal Charity Challenge - teams of 4. The Rottnest Channel Swim Association, the organisation behind the Rottnest Channel Swim, was inducted as an Honour Organisation by the International Marathon Swimming Hall of Fame.

It is one of the World's Top 100 Open Water Swims.


Minimum Age

The age requirement for the Rottnest Channel Swim is a minimum of 14 years of age on the day of the swim in accordance with the FINA rules for open water swimming (OWS 1.2).

Ballot System

All solo swimmers who register between the 1st and 14th November 2011 gain automatic entry into the event. A random ballot will be conducted on 8 November 2011 to determine which duos and teams are successful in gaining entry into the 2012 event.


A solo crossing of the Rottnest Channel Swim is known as a Rotto Solo. First time solo swimmers, and previous solo swimmers who have not competed in the event in the last five years, will be required to complete a 10km qualifying swim in 4 hours and 15 minutes or less. Solo swimmers who do not complete the 10km in the time required do not qualify and will not be permitted to start.

5+ Honour Board

Several swimmers have swum more than 5 solo Rottnest Channel swims including the following individuals are on the Rottnest Channel Swim Honour Board:

Duos and Teams

The entry fees for the 2012 HBF Rottnest Channel Swim is $350 for duos and $700.00 for teams. The categories include Duo (28+, 50+, 75+, 100+), Team (56+, 100+, 150+, 200+).

Lavan Legal Charity Challenge

The Lavan Legal Charity Challenge is an exclusive category for 35 teams of four who wish to support the Starlight Children’s Foundation by competing for the Lavan Legal Charity Challenge Cup.

Support Boat

Solo swimmers require a support boat that is a minimum of 5 metres in length. Duo and team swimmers require a support boat that is a minimum of 6 metres in length. It is highly recommended but not compulsory, that paddle craft be used to assist the swimmer/s and skipper on the day.

Call Signs

Call signs for solo swimmers and teams will be the solo/team number. For example, if you are solo swimmer 100 then your call sign is "Solo swimmer 100" and if you are team 450 then your call sign will be "Team 450".

Swimsuit Regulations

No swimmer shall use or be assisted by artificial aids of any manner. Swimmers are permitted to grease the body before a swim, use goggles, wear a maximum of two swim caps, nose clip and earplugs. Swimmers must wear one bathing suit that does not contain neoprene, rubber or any other material that aids buoyancy and complies with FINA’s Rules for Open Water Swimming with the exception that until 28 February 2012 the bathing suit may be a swim skin of any brand, or the pointzero3 or nero swim suit made by blueseventy. In addition to one bathing suit that complies with this rule, swimmers may wear one rash vest or stinger suit made of porous textile material (such as nylon or lycra), which does not extend beyond the ankles, the neck or the wrist.

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