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Tuesday, 6 August, 2002, 18:28 GMT 19:28 UK
Butterfly swimmer smashes channel record
Julie Bradshaw
It was Julie Bradshaw's second attempt at the swim
A teacher from Loughborough has entered the record books after swimming the English Channel using butterfly stroke quicker than anyone else.

Julie Bradshaw, a PE teacher at Loughborough University, completed the gruelling 22 mile swim in 14 hours and 18 minutes.

"It was a dream of mine for years, and once I got the dream and goal, I just went for it," she said.

"I did it for the Rainbow Children's Hospice in the East Midlands and I hope to raise a lot of money for them," she said.

Fastest Channel Swims
American Chad Hundeby, front crawl, 7 hrs 17 mins
Englishwoman Julie Bradshaw, butterfly, 14 hrs, 18 mins
Belgian Pierre van Vooren, breaststroke, 15 hrs, 9 mins
Backstroke, no record exists

Julie had originally planned the swim on Saturday but had to cancel because of bad weather.

But she was able to set off at 0800 BST on Monday from Shakespeare Cliff in Dover and arrived in France after midnight on Tuesday.

Her new record time is nine and half hours faster than the previous record, set by Canadian Vicki Keith, who took more than 23 hours.

Alison Taylor of the Channel Swimming Association said: "It is absolutely brilliant that she has broken the record."

"It is marvellous as she had tried and failed before, and she has done it in a terrific time."

Julie Bradshaw after her record swim
Julie beat the previous record by nine hours

It was Ms Bradshaw's second attempt at a crossing using the butterfly stoke - she was stopped two years ago just a few miles from the French shore because of a shoulder injury.

The fastest-ever swim using any stroke was by American Chad Hundeby in 1994 when he completed the crossing in 7 hours and 17 minutes.

The breaststroke record is held by Belgian Pierre van Vooren who took 15 hours and 9 minutes to cross the Channel in 1963.

No one has ever swum the Channel using the backstroke.


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