Ruby Adsett was entered in tomorrow's Napier Port Ocean Swim without consultation.
"With Dad [Trevor Adsett] being the event director I can't live in my household without competing in it," Adsett said with a laugh last night.
The opportunity to become the first three-peat winner of the open women's 2.5km title in the seven-year history of the event is also a major incentive. Although the 16-year-old Napier Aquahawks Swimming Club member and Westshore Surf Lifesaving Club lifeguard wasn't talking up her chances of the three-peat as much last night as he did after she won her second consecutive title with a time of 27m53s off Napier last year.
"I'm definitely going for three in a row, but I don't know how much endurance I will have. I haven't done the same mileage in the pool as I did last year because surf lifesaving is my priority this summer," Adsett explained.
Last year she was swimming up to 50km each week before the ocean swim but this year she is averaging 20km.
"I love being outside with surf lifesaving rather than swimming in a chlorinated pool," she said.
Last year Adsett won the 16 and under 200m freestyle title and four silver medals at the national age group swimming championships. However, she won't be attending the April edition of these champs because next month's national surf lifesaving champs in Christchurch where she will start in the surf race, run swim run, board race, ironwoman and team events, will be a big enough assignment for the Napier Girls' High School deputy head girl.
An Aquahawk for nine years and five-time national age group champion in 200m freestyle, Adsett, who finished third overall in the ocean swim last year behind Aquahawk Hadlee Dyer and Hawke's Bay triathlete Kaleb Wright, predicted fellow Aquahawk Maggie Franks and Westshore lifeguard Harriet Lloyd-Jones to be her toughest rivals tomorrow. But she said "unknowns" from out of town couldn't be discounted.
"I have to give the three-peat a crack this weekend because next year I may be away to university in Otago before it is staged."
She does swimming training four days each week and surf lifesaving four afternoons each week before heading off to work at The Frying Dutchman in Ahuriri. Should she complete the three-peat tomorrow Adsett will more than deserve a meal from that establishment.
Dyer, 16, will attempt to retain his men's 2.5km title. Fellow Aquahawk and Napier Boys' High School student Cameron Madams, who was fourth overall last year, is also expected to perform well.
Dyer stopped the clock at 27m34s last year. Dyer, Madams and fellow NBHS student Jade Wills won the teams title last year and will be hard to beat in this section tomorrow.
More than 260 starters across all the divisions are expected. As in previous years the event has been staged today with the aim of attracting swimmers from out of the Bay who may be attending the Art Deco festivities.
A 2km stand up paddle board race will be held for the first time. Other divisions are the 1km classic, the 300m dash and the 200m kids classic.
Late entries will be accepted at the East Pier Beach Bar and Brasserie tonight or up to half an hour before each race tomorrow.