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Bart rides the tide

Bart after Lee swimFifty years ago Fr Bart Kiely SJ, now professor of psychology at the Gregorian University, won the Lee swim as a 16-year-old. It is a different race now, 1700 metres downstream through the middle of Cork, helped by a turning tide. This year Bart set his sights on breaking 60 minutes. Scorning a wet suit (that would have put him into a different, sissy category) and braving hypothermia, he has just repeated the swim, and front-crawled the distance in 55 minutes, twenty minutes better than in 2007. Beside the water he bumped into a rival swimmer from his youth, Mary Wylie, now a grandmother. She was the fastest girl in Munster when Bart was the fastest boy. Bart would not confirm that he is organising a swimming race down the Tiber for the Prefects of Vatican Congregations.