Senator Steve Pallett (61) finished the swim on Monday at around 7pm, in a time of 11 hours and 26 minutes, to claim the record from Frenchman Jean-Paul Madelenat, who completed the challenge in 11 hours and 46 minutes in 2002.
Senator Pallett, who is Assistant Economic Development Minister and Assistant Health Minister, is no stranger to long-distance swims, having completed a round-Island swim in 2015, in addition to crossing from Jersey to France in 2016.
Setting off from the breakwater at Elizabeth Castle at 7.30am on Monday, the Senator was joined by an experienced team including Nigel Trehiou (crew) Fred Maynard (kayak support and training partner) Wendy Trehiou (observer and training partner) and Neil Faudemer (skipper and training partner).
Senator Pallett said it was a positive experience – one that received plenty of support from Islanders. He added that, while it was nice to break the record, that was not his motivation. ‘I do it for fun and for myself – it wasn’t for the records, just for a personal achievement,’ he said.
‘It felt good. It was a sunny warm day – you don’t get weather much better than that. I took it a bit differently this time, by focusing on my swimming and my technique instead of looking up at various points. The crew were brilliant and I had so much support, from Islanders of all walks of life. I’ve been reading the messages from people seeing how I did and checking in.’