1. When will Champions of the Channel be held?

The inaugural event will be held on Saturday, 27 February 2016. Champions of the Channel swimmers will leave Cottesloe Beach in the first wave at 5.45am before the 2016 Karma Resort Rottnest Channel Swim. Champions of the Channel is essentially a race within a race and will form part of a Rottnest Island weekend of swimming.

2. What is the prize money for Champions of the Channel?

The Rottnest Channel Swim Association (RCSA) have confirmed the prize money for each category will be $5000 for 1st Place, $2000 for 2nd Place and $1000 for 3rd Place.

3. How is it different to the Karma Resorts Rottnest Channel Swim?

This event varies greatly to the Karma Resorts Rottnest Channel Swim! Here are some of the differences:

 Karma Resorts Rottnest Channel SwimChampions of the Channel
Type of EventMass community participationElite and exclusive, invitation to register after submitting expression of interest
DateSaturday, 27 February 2016 with the first wave starting at 6.00amSaturday, 27 February 2016 with the Champions of the Channel wave leaving at 5.45am
Number of participants~ 2,500~ 300
Number of waves131

4. Would I qualify to enter?

As this is an exclusive, high performance event, we will require those looking to enter to demonstrate they are capable of swimming in this event and will meet the time cut-offs. The qualification requirements will vary depending on the category but, as a guide, solos will need to demonstrate they can swim 10km in less than 2hr 40min or previously made a Rottnest Channel crossing within 5hr 10 minutes.

5. How do I register?

Registrations can be done here. If you want to register your interest, you will be in no way committed to enter.

Please note that the RCSA retains full discretion as to the number of entrants. Depending upon final demand, the RCSA can’t guarantee a place in the starting field for all interested swimmers who can attain these indicated times.

6. Why have you decided to expand the event in the way that you have?

Over the past 18 months, the RCSA has been actively trying to find ways to expand the event. We have considered a number of options:
• Solos and duos on Saturday, teams on Sunday
• Solos Saturday, duos and teams on Sunday
• Two starts; two finishes
• One start; two finishes
• Have a second event on a different weekend

Each option has its flaws. Our biggest concern is the safety of competitors. Another major concern is losing or lessening the atmosphere that exists on event day. The event continues to grow and we want to facilitate that, but we can’t change the event that people love. It wouldn’t make sense. All of the options compromised either safety or atmosphere.

Our solution is to create an iconic, world-class elite event that will be a race within a race before expanding into a stand alone event on the following day in the future. This will make it a weekend of swimming, which is another strategic strategic objective for the RCSA. A secondary aim is to take some pressure off Saturday’s event by having some of the existing elite swimmers enter Champions of the Channel.

7. Drafting
For the first time in 2016, the community event the Karma Resorts Rottnest Channel Swim, incorporated Champions of the Channel. It was our intention that this would be a separate race and would run in accordance with FINA rules, officiated by Swimming WA Technical Officials.
The Rottnest Channel Swim Association (RCSA) has viewed some on-water footage, which draws attention to the matter of drafting, and we are aware that there has been some ambiguity around whether or not drafting is legal as part of Champions of the Channel. You can find more information on this topic here.