So whilst 2020 was such an unprecedented, difficult and emotional year with the Pandemic, for so many and continues to be it is it was even sadder for me personally.
I had to postpone this Channel swim until 2021 due to my Husband's deterioration in health, and subsequent passing away in July.
Therefore, this Channel swim will now be even more special and poignant.... Charlie and I already discussed this in January last year. That it would be my "Retirement" CHANNEL SWIM..
I still stand by this, But with the swim dates coinciding with the first anniversary of his passing. It will now be "My 6th decade Solo Channel swim - For Charlie. In his memory"
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A little on what I accomplished in 2019
1) Swum across the Gibraltar Straits in April - from Spain to Africa
2) Across the Arctic Circle - from Finland to Sweden -ate midnight in full daylight - and swam ‘back in time’ - left at 12.10am from Finland - and arrived at 11.50 pm in Sweden! Very cool!
3) Lake Tahoe - the full length, 21.3 miles, at Altitude - and got altitude sickness in the process! which was not at all nice - but I finished!
A little Back story
Sal swam the English channel for the first time, at 18 in 1975 Then again at 28 - in 1985 Then again - in her and THE next decade at 35 in 1992 Again at 48 in 2005 and then at 56 in 2013 and for good measure - threw in a 2 Way EC swim in 2016 - becoming the oldest swimmer to complete this at 59.. During this time, she has also completed many other of the top worldwide recognised swims as well So - 5 decades of English Channel Swims so far; nobody else has done this and is probably unlikely to - so to cement that unique record, Sal is booked for her 6th decade English Channel sometime between 27 July and 2nd August 2020 Sal will be 63 then so it combined 6 decades of her life and in years VG sponsors Sally Minty-Gravett’s 6th decade cross-channel swim 11 December 2019 – VG, one of Jersey’s independent and largest fiduciary and administration solutions businesses, has partnered with cross-channel veteran and Guinness World Record holder Sally Minty-Gravett as principal sponsor of her seventh cross-channel attempt in six decades. Jersey-born Sally made her first cross channel swim in 1975 and has made the crossing every decade since. The swim from Dover to Calais in late July 2020 aims to raise £10,000 in aid of Jersey Alzheimers Association’s Splash Chat Programme and the Jersey Lifeboat Association. VG’s Managing Director, Mark Hucker, commented on the sponsorship “We’re delighted to be able to support Sally in her milestone swim. Sally’s challenge epitomises the values of VG: Excellence – always striving to be better and push boundaries; Caring – taking into account the needs of others; Partnership – working with her support team and VG to achieve more than she could alone; and, Positivity – always tackling challenges with conviction and a smile” Sally Minty-Gravett adds “Finding financial sponsorship to fund these challenges has often been a big challenge. I am humbled, delighted and so grateful for the sponsorship from VG; successfully securing the sponsorship will now enable me to focus on training hard and reaching, hopefully exceeding, my fundraising targets. I am looking forward tremendously to partnering with VG to ‘get this 6th decade English Channel swim done.” They are my Main sponsor and are paying for my Pilot Boat in full - which is fantastic! I am so grateful I am also being helped financially by Hydropool CI, Columbia Estates who are contributing to my Travel / Accommodation costs. I have received another £500 towards expenses too I am also being ‘Looked after’/Sponsored’ by Laura Cattell at Freedom Physiotherapy and Osteopath Bill Aston will be ensuring my shoulders are in good shape too! I will be raising money for 2 Local Jersey Charities: The JLA - Jersey Lifeboat Association, the new independent Jersey Lifeboats set up 2 years ago and Jersey Alzheimers Association - I have been an active volunteer for them for 5 + years now in the “SplashChat" Initiative, where we encourage them to come swimming and then have a social coffee hour afterwards' I am aiming to raise at LEAST £10,000 - half way there already!