James Pittar

James Pittar officially became our club patron in 2006. James is a blind Marathon Swimmer who was inducted into the International Marathon Swimming Hall of Fame in 2009.

James suffers from a genetic disorder called Retinitis Pigmentosa, which causes a degeneration of the retina. This disease was diagnosed when he was 16 after he suffered from rapidly decreasing vision. He was legally blind by 21 and completely blind by his early 30s.

As a blind marathon swimmer, he is directed by a team using a whistle system: 1 blast for left, and 2 short blasts for right.

Still this hasn’t stopped James; he was the first blind swimmer to successfully cross the English Channel. James has also completed many more amazing swims around the world and holds the triple crown of open water swimming (English Channel, Catalina Channel & Manhattan Island Swim). He has completed a swim on six continents. In 2013 he was part of a relay team that crossed the Bering Strait in unbelievably harsh conditions.

He is an Australia Day Ambassador & an Ambassador for the Rainbow Club.

We are very pleased to have such a fantastic swimmer and role model associated with our club.


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