74-year-old German man swims Strait of Gibraltar

74-year-old German man swims Strait of Gibraltar
Photo: DPA
A 74-year-old man from Lower Saxony swam the 18.5 kilometre Strait of Gibraltar on Saturday in four hours and nine minutes.

Konrad Euler joins an elite club of about 300 swimmers who have conquered the strait, which separates the British possession on the southern coast of Spain from Morocco.

“It was very cold, but otherwise I didn’t have any problems,” Euler said. In contrast to most strait swimmers, Euler did not wear a neoprene wetsuit and braved water temperatures of 16 to 18 degrees Celsius.

The retired doctor trained two years for the swim and combated a shoulder injury that delayed his crossing attempt.

“This is really a great achievement,” said a spokesman for the Spanish ACNEG association which helped organise Euler’s swim.

Anyone attempting to cross the Strait of Gibraltar is required to have a rescue boat on hand and swimmers may stop every half an hour to drink. Many who attempt a crossing have to give up part way because of the cold, strong currents, muscle cramps and hypothermia.

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