Southampton based sailor and marine professional Scott Dawson, 37, will be taking to the water in a different way when in August of this year he will attempt to swim around the Isle of Wight.

Scott Dawson from Southampton is taking on the daunting 60-mile marathon – more than twice the distance of a typical cross-Channel swim– in a bid to raise £30,000 for two charities which are close to his heart.

The married father of two is fund-raising for Meningitis Now, and as a life-long yachtsman also wants to support the work of the Marine Conservation Society (MCS).

Scott said: ‘After a meningitis scare when I was five months old and as a parent myself I can understand what many parents must go through.’

Adding ‘Having spent most of my life in or on the water I fully appreciate the work of the MCS in protecting our seas, shores and wildlife, and that is why I will also be aiming to support the society.’

‘Completing this swim and raising money for Meningitis Now and the Marine Conservation Society will allow me to give something back and contribute to the vital work the charity carries out every day.’

Apart from sailing, up until 18 months ago Scott did very little exercise and going swimming meant taking the kids to the local pool on a Sunday morning! A diet of beer, the odd take away and lots of good home cookinghad taken its toll over the years and led him to be nearly 35kg over weight and very unfit.

An allergic reaction to a hazelnut and a visit to hospitals parked Scott into going to a swim fit class at his local pool – as happens with these things one thing led to another and a chance encounter with a group of open water swimmers in Gosport.

The group had what seemed at the time grand plans to swim across the Solent from Stokes Bay to Ryde in September 2015. As the training increased for the swim the weight came off as did the inches on the waist line – about 5! The swimming bug was back.

So now Scott’s diet has changed, and after having lost 30 kg in weight, it is ironic that he now has to calorie load as the training is burning more than he can take in! With the support of the High 5 nutrition scheme Scottis managing to optimise his nutrient intake.

Scott aims to swim from Ryde in late August 2016, when the tides are most favourable, and the water warmer. Swimming anti-clockwise aroundthe Isle of Wight, Scott knows he must get his timing just right to pass the famous Needles landmark before the tide turns against him – but not too early as the tide could take him straight past! The entire swim is expected to last at least 24 hours.

While Scott is not allowed any direct contact with any body during his swim, he will have some famous names egging him on aboard hissupport boats, including record-breaking Cowes sailor Brian Thompson who is incharge of the navigation for the swim.

‘I am very grateful for all the generous offers of support Ihave received, not least from my wife Polly and children Matilda and Alfie, andI will be putting everything I can into rewarding that faith in August,’ said Scott.

Rib X are pleased to be supporting Scott in his challenge and have agreed to provide a custom built support / safety Rib for the duration of his swim.

We are also hoping to arrange a Press / Info day on the 17th or 18th of August to be held on Hayling Island.

For further information:

Website: www.swimiow.com Facebook: Isle of Wightswim by Scott Dawson