Swimming (January 1991)
Brothers Axel and Joe arrived to the warmth of the Sunshine Coast in 1912 from icy Finland. Both champions in the surf and still water, they would train at Petrie Creek as they ferried harvested sugar cane up and down the waterway- one driving the cane punt as the other swam alongside.
Axel was a brilliant freestyler reputedly “the best surf swimmer in the world” while Joe held the 400 yard breast-stroke Australian record for many years. The brothers were offered the chance to represent Finland at the 1928 Olympics, but refused, hoping instead to wear the colours of their adopted homeland.