Roger Finch (born 15 August 1957) is an open water swimmer, escort pilot of the False Bay Swimming Association, and an open water swimming coach from South Africa. He is the first South African swimmer and 66th person in history to achieve the Triple Crown of Open Water Swimming. He is the celebrity swimmer for the Sun City Swim in Gauteng, South Africa.
Open Water Swimming Career
- He completed 2 Rottnest Channel Swims in Western Australia in 2010 and 2012
- He completed the Cadiz Freedom Swim in South Africa
- He completed a 33.5 km crossing of the English Channel from England to France at the age of 54 on 20 August 2011 in 12 hours 39 minutes.
- He completed the 45.9 km Manhattan Island Marathon Swim in New York, U.S.A. at the age of 54 in 2011.
- He completed a 32.3 km crossing of the Catalina Channel in California, U.S.A. at the age of 55 to achieve the Triple Crown of Open Water Swimming.
- He completed the 26.9 km International Self-Transcendence Marathon Swim in Lake Zurich, Switzerland in 8 hours 47 minutes.
- He completed the Ederle Swim from Manhattan Island to New Jersey, U.S.A. in 5 hours 11 minutes.
- He completed 20 Robben Island - Blouberg single crossings including 1 double crossing during his career.
- He completed the S.C.A.R. Swim Challenge, a four-day stage swim in Arizona, U.S.A.
- He completed five 3 Anchor Bay single crossings and 1 Rottnest Channel Swim during his career.
- He was the first and only person to swim from the island of Coin De Mire to the bay of Bain Bouef Mauritius on Christmas Day 2010 in Mauritius
- He completed the 2015 S.C.A.R. Swim Challenge in Arizona.
- He completed a 14.4 km crossing of the Strait of Gibraltar from Spain to Morocco in 6 hours 20 minutes in June 2015 in a tandem swim with Tracy Clark.
- He organized the Varne Ridge English Channel Swim Camp in Dover, England for channel swimmers.
Open Water Coaching
Finch also coaches open water swimmers, from newbies to veterans, including Samantha Cowen and Caren Strydom. He also served as a crew member and pace swimmer for Dr. Otto Thaning who is the oldest person to cross the English Channel at the age of 73 years.
Half Century Club
Finch is a member of the Half Century Club for his successful English Channel crossing performed at the age of 54 in 12 hours 39 minutes on 20 August 2011, the Rottnest Channel Swim in 6 hours 28 minutes at the age of 54, a completion of the Manhattan Island Marathon Swim on 23 June 2012, and a 9 hour 45 minute crossing of the Catalina Channel on 1 October 2012 as a 55-year-old.
Catalina Channel Half Century Club
1. Jim Clifford (USA), 62 years 11 months, CM in 9:49 on 28 September 2014
2. Bob West (USA), 62, CM in 15:49 in 1998
3. Gary Greenwood (USA), 62, CM in 13:08 in 2004
4. Pat Gallant-Charette (USA), 60, CM in 14:11 in 2011
5. Mo Siegel (USA), 60, CM in 13:08 in 2011
6. Scott Lautman (USA), 60 CM in 12:09 in 2013
7. Bob Needham (USA), 58, CM in 13:10 in 2011
8. Tom Hecker (USA), 57, CM in 10:45 in 2009
9. Richard Knepper (USA), 56, MC in 11:56 in 2005
10. Barbara Held (USA), 56, CM in 9:36 in 2010
11. Mark Smitherman (USA), 56, CM in 11:52 in 2014
12. Carol Sing (USA), 55, CM in 10:38 in 1997
13. Bill Hoehn (USA), 55, CM in 12:57 in 2005
14. Roger Finch (South Africa), 55, CM in 9:45:02 in 2012
15. Kevin Murphy (Great Britain), 54, CM in 15:23 in 2003
16. Dave Van Mouwerik (USA), 54, CM in 12:09:07 in 2012
17. Ned Denison (Ireland), 54, CM 8:50:04 in 2012
18. Peter Tanham (Australia), 54, CM in 10:07 in 2014
19. Anthony McCarley (USA), 54, CM in 13:00.3 in 2014
20. Nick Almos-Lau (Mexico), 53, CM in 12:40 in 1999
21. James Fitzpatrick (USA), 53, CM in 14:59 in 2008 (to Newport Beach)
22. Jim McConica (USA), 53, CM in 10:19 in 2004
23. Douglas McConnell (USA), 53, CM in 12:41:13 in 2012
24. David Cooper (USA), 52, CM in 13:19 in 2005
25. Dan Richards (USA), 52, CM in 10:10 2008
26. Chris Burke (USA), 52, CM in 11:22 in 2014
27. Alan Bell (USA), 51, CM in 9:28 in 2001
28. Chris Palfrey (Australia), 51, CM in 10:30 in 2009
29. Lynn Kubasek (USA), 51, CM in 15:53 in 2009
30. Daniel Robinson (USA), 51, CM in 9:57 in 2008
31. Ron Collins (USA), 51, CM in 10:05 on 10 September 2013
32. Antonio Argüelles (Mexico), 50, CM in 10:25 in 2009
33. William Newbern (USA), 50, CM in 12:48 in 2005
34. Ray Meltvedt (USA), 50, CM in 15:25 in 2010
35. Suzie Dods (USA), 50, MC in 18:36 in 2010
36. Dale Petranech (USA), 50, CM in 13:28 in 1985
37. John Hill (USA), 50, CM in 19:15 in 1985
38. Frank Reynolds (USA), 50, CM in 10:34 in 1987
39. Jim Barber (USA), 50, CM in 8:43 in 2010
40. Sue Free (USA), 50, CM in 11:23 in 2012
41. Bridgette Hobart Janeczko (USA), 50, CM 11:27:16 in 2012
42. Hendrik Meerman (USA), CM, 50, 12:48:30 in 2012
43. Scott Tapley (USA), MC, 50, 17:43:12 in 2014
- Finch was named a 2014 MSF Global Marathon Swimming Award finalist in the Streeter Award for Service to Marathon Swimming category together with Tracy Clark.
- Finch was nominated for the 2016 World Open Water Swimming Man of the Year Award by the World Open Water Swimming Association.
2016 World Open Water Swimming Man of the Year Award nomination
Roger Finch has literally traveled the world, smiling, swigging and swimming to his heart's desire...and to the rest of the global open water swimming community's joy. Finch trained in South Africa for a Cook Strait swim that never got off the shore due to inclement weather, but he was able to get in a Robben Island crossing in Cape Town, encourage David Barra to set up the 20 Bridges Swim around Manhattan in New York for his friend Tracy Clark, and then crew for her and many others crossing the English Channel. Along the way, Finch unexpectedly had a stroke and was hospitalized. Down, but not out, his revival was touch-and-go, but his physicality and mindset enabled him to recover well enough to later complete a Boston Light Swim as well as head up the Varne Ridge English Channel Swim Camp outside of Dover and raise money for a new wheelchair for Ros Hardiman, a fellow English Channel swimmer. For his globally-renowned good nature and high spirits, for his remarkable rebound from what could have been a debilitating stroke, and for his humble, wholehearted generosity in helping other open water swimmers around the world, Roger Finch is a well-deserving nominee for the 2016 World Open Water Swimming Man of the Year.
Finish of English Channel Swim
Robben Island Crossing on Super Swimmer
- The ICE Series Episode 1 with Dr. Otto Thaning: Heart and Hypothermia in The Ice
- How Ice Swimmers Achieve the Impressive, Improbable, and Inconceivable
- How High Is Your Navigational IQ In The Open Water?
- Meg Gill Radically Changes The Sport Of Swimming
- Ram Tough, Swimming In The Death Zone From The Ring Of Death To Strandfontein
- Sally Minty-Gravett, Otto Thaning, Ned Denison Give Tribute To Varne Ridge On WOWSA Live
- Finishing Strongly In The Second Half Of Life
- Catalina Channel Swimming Federation website
- Roger Finch Having a Great Time in the English Channel
- South African Roger Finch On Swimming Manhattan
- Arend Grondman, From Skipper To Swimmer
- English Channel website
- The Oldest Men and Women in the Sea
- Triple Crown of Open Water Swimming
- Roger Finch Becomes 1st South African To Join Triple Crown
- A Celebration Of Catalina Channel Champions
- Catalina Channel Swimming Federation website
- Updating The Half Century Club
- Tackling The Tsugaru
- Tsugaru Channel Swimming Association
- Open Water Swimming
- Marathon Swimming
- World Marathon Swimming Association
- World Open Water Swimming Association
- 50 Is New 30, 60 Is The New 40 In The Open Water
- S.C.A.R. To Begin Tomorrow
- Fearsome, Ferocious, Fickle Farallons Awaits South Africa
- The End Of S.C.A.R. Signifies Its Beginning
- Roger That! When The Ocean Turns Very Very Scary
- Dealing With Apex Predators Of The Deep
- Samantha Cowen Gasping And Swimming To Success
- Professionals On The Prowl
- One False Move By Ned Denison Across The Bay
- Ned Denison Is Swimming On Cloud Nine
- The Little Pride And Joy Of South Africa
- 3 Amigos Have A Real Adventure In The Open Water
- Samantha Cowen Struggles, Succeeds From Robben Island
- Have Swimsuit And Goggles, Will Travel
- Triple Crowners Showcase Their Fountain Of Youth - Age of Triple Crowners
- Roger Finch's False Bay Attempt Despite A Feeding Frenzy
- Roger Finch Soon To Break Out Like Superman
- Dr. Otto Thaning Knows All About Heart
- Charlotte Samuels Lowers Bar, Set Triple Crown Record
- Charlotte Samuels On Achieving The Triple Crown
- Swimming The Catalina Channel At Night
- MSF Global Marathon Swimming Award Finalists
- Marvelous Marathon Memories Of A Mountain Of A Man
- Christine Cossette, Elizabeth Fry Extend The Possible
- S.C.A.R. Day One In Saguaro
- S.C.A.R. Swim Challenge
- How Men And Women Compare In Open Water Swimming
- Two-timing Success For Brad Lundblad
- Liz Fry, Role Model Exterordinaire
- Elizabeth Fry Blows The Minds Of Veterans
- Men And Women Couldn't Be Closer
- Battling The Mind Game
- Gentlemen And Giants Of The Channel
- Roger Finch, Suzie Dods, Lochie Hinds Headline Boston
- Boston Light Swim
- 2016 WOWSA Awards Nominees
- 2016 World Open Water Swimming Man of the Year Nominees
- 2016 World Open Water Swimming Woman of the Year Nominees
- 2016 World Open Water Swimming Performance of the Year Nominees
- 2016 World Open Water Swimming Offering of the Year Nominees
- Roger Finch's Joy Of Life Unleashed On Land And In Water
- To Swim Into History With A Smile
- Frog Grog Pilsner Honors Terry Tomalin
- Roger Finch And Tracy Clark Sharing Their Passions
- SCAR Swim Challenge, A Kent Nicholas Dream Realized