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About thurlestone 
Sat 14th Sept 2024

A brand new race in the South West
Run by Kate and Ivan Burton from Open Water Devon, take part in the inaugural and first swim race through Thurlestone Arch in South Devon. Nestled between pristine beaches and rugged cliffs, Thurlestone Arch stands like a gateway in the bay. Whether you're a seasoned athlete or a novice participant, this event caters to all skill levels, offering a range of race categories to choose from, 8 years old and up. 

How does the event run?

You can register from 11am in the event field, just opposite Thurlestone Golf Club (collect your hat, chip timer, and merchandise if purchased).

You'll need to be on the beach ready to swim at least 10 mins before your race starts. We start from the right hand side of Leas Foot Sand, a 150m walk from the event car park.


The Nippers and Youth race is from the same beach, in the shelter of the small bay.

The 3 mile swimmers will set off next, everyone will line up between the flags and start on the whistle, then the 2 mile swimmers. Followed by the 1 mile swimmers.

The finish is on the left hand side of the beach. For swimmers doing multiple laps, you'll use the Australian Exit (you leave the water, run around a marker, and re-enter the water for your next lap).

The Golf Club are putting on food and drinks
, so stick around and enjoy your post race dinner! Your post race food from the golf club is Fish Pie, Lasagna, or Veggie Lasagna, with salad and garlic bread for £9. On the day this is £11, so grab a bargain and enjoy some homemade hot food!

Day Schedule

Registration Opens for all - 11am

Nippers and Youth Race Start - 1.30pm 

Prize giving (Nippers and Youth) - 2pm

3 mile Swimmers (Mass Start) - 2.30pm

2 mile Swimmers (Mass Start) - 2.35pm

1 mile Swimmers (Mass Start) - 2.40pm

Sweep of the course - 5.30pm

Adult Prize giving  - 6pm

Sun down - 7.30pm

Golf Club Food Available from lunchtime

If the race is cancelled due to bad weather etc, everyone will be automatically moved onto our back up date which is on Saturday 21st September. Registration opening at 6.30am, adults races starting at 8am, and kids races starting at 10am. One prize giving for all at 11am, followed by Golf Club lunch.

Please see the FAQ's here for lots of info

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Who runs The Thurlestone Arch Race
Run by Kate and Ivan from Open Water Devon, both experienced sea swimmers, open water coaches and water enthusiasts are bringing the iconic race back to South Devon!


Ivan holds a Surf Science and Tech BSc 1st Class Honors, and is a Senior Lifeguard trainer/assessor with the RNLI. He has grown up swimming in lakes and rivers in Wales, before travelling the world following the waves, and settling in Devon. 

Kate has taught outdoor education for 15 years, and holds the BC White Water Level 3 training, 4* Sea and White Water leader, White Water Safety and Resuce, and Powerboating Level 2. She's Devon born and bred, and loves any aquatic adventure!

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