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Thursday, October 23, 2014

Chloë McCardel vs The Box Jellies

Courtesy of 7News in the Bahamas.

The distance was incredible, 126 km, but the fact that Chloë McCardel could withstand several box jellyfish stings during her record-setting swim in the Bahamas and still continue swimming is unheard of in the open water swimming world.

To continue with that amount and type of venom in the human body is as unprecedented as her swim itself.

See the effects on McCardel's body in the 7News news report above where husband Paul McQueeney explains what his wife faced during her unprecedented 42 hour 30 minute swim.

Copyright © 2014 by World Open Water Swimming Association

Mobly Follows Moby

Science reports on National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration scientists' use of a drone named Mobly which can fly for weeks. It captured aerial footage of a group of killer whales that has always been difficult to obtain. The aerial perspective off the coast of Canada near Vancouver is majestic.

Boris Becker Talks Ocean Seven With Adam Walker

Courtesy of WOWSA, Huntington Beach, California.

One Young World Counsellor Adam Walker talks with tennis great Boris Becker in Dublin, Ireland during the One Young World summit.

"It was a great honour and an unbelievable experience, sharing stories with ex-presidents an astronaut and others including Boris Becker, Sol Cambell and Kirani Williams."

For more information on One Young World, visit here.

Copyright © 2014 by World Open Water Swimming Association

Fran Crippen: April 17, 1984 - October 23, 2010

Courtesy of WOWSA, Huntington Beach, California.

A gentlemen. A hero. An inspiration. Fran Crippen leaves behind a lasting legacy. Not only as a world-class athlete, but as someone you would be proud to have as a son, brother, teammate, neighbor and friend.

Fran was always there for his very close-knit family and for competitors he lined up against. He was always lending an ear and hand to friends. He was always there for his teammates and he always had time for fans and younger swimmers.

On the four-year anniversary of Fran's tragic death in Dubai, we deeply bow our heads in respect and heartfelt awe of his life and legacy and of his family. It is for very good reason that the Crippen Family is rightly called the First Family of Swimming in the United States.

Thinking about what Fran had been lobbying before his death for FINA-sanctioned and FINA-officiated races, we recall that FINA decision-makers have always pointed out that they must consult with experts in the field first to determine safety standards. In their opinion, experts are medical professionals and researchers.

In contrast, we strongly believe the true experts in the world of marathon swimming are the swimmers themselves. In our opinion, FINA and other governing bodies around the world should listen and learn - first and foremost - from these experts, the athletes. It is what Fran always wanted and pushed for - and what is right.

Even without medical educations or research experience, it is the athletes who willingly compete in a sport with its inherent risks. Their bodies are THE most practical laboratories for real-world testing; FINA testing should not be conducted in some far-off, undisclosed indoor research facility. The athletes know first-hand what their bodies feel like and what their bodies can withstand under extreme conditions. There are approximately 250 athletes every year who compete in professional marathon swims on the FINA 10K Marathon Swimming World Cup circuit and the FINA Open Water Swimming Grand Prix series. There are another few hundreds of athletes worldwide who do at least two marathon swims every year. These experienced athletes - swimmers who have done dozens and dozens of swims around the world in myriad conditions - are the real experts. Their collective wisdom and body of cumulative knowledge are second to none when it comes to understanding how the human body can and does react while marathon swimming.

In contrast, it is unlikely for medical professionals and researchers to know well the physiological stresses that marathon swimmers go through under extreme conditions unless they are an open water swimmer or coaches themselves.

To know first-hand as an athlete or to see first-hand how athletes handle extreme conditions after hours in the open water should be a requirement to be considered an expert by FINA and other governing bodies.

While certain physiological conditions can be replicated, implied, assumed and tested in laboratory conditions or relative to comparable tests with land-based athletes, the actual physiological conditions that marathon swimmers face under inhospitable conditions are extraordinarily variable. Every marathon swimmer knows this, either as a result of intensive training or swimming a grueling race.

Dozens of open water swimmers and triathletes continue to tragically pass away in the open water. Fran was not the only individual who tragically passed away. But Fran, to his credit and as everyone knew, not only lobbied for increased safety for himself. Fran was always unselfishly striving to make those around him and the sport better. That is what Fran asked for before his death.

He is looking down on us to see what we are doing with his simple, wise and reasonable request.

May he rest in peace and may we have the strength to implement his vision.

For background information on the issue of warm water temperatures at FINA-sanctioned events, read the following articles:

* FINA Taking It To The Edge - Part 1
* FINA Taking It To The Edge - Part 2
* FINA Taking It To The Edge - Part 3
* Why 31°C FINA? - Part 4

Copyright © 2014 by World Open Water Swimming Association

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Inspector Jack Haskins And Man's Best Friends

Courtesy of WOWSA, Huntington Beach, California.

Bob Duenkel of the International Swimming Hall of Fame called for nominations for the 2015 Annual Paragon Awards.

Candidates are nominated for Competitive Swimming, Competitive Diving, Competitive Synchronized Swimming, Competitive Water Polo, Aquatic Safety and Recreational Swimming.

The Awards are presented for outstanding contributions and leadership within the category.

Several well-known open water swimming experts have won the Aquatic Safety Award including Professor Dr. Joost Bierens, M.D., Ph.D., Ralph Goto, B. Chris Brewster, Stathis Avramidis, Ph.D., and Jim Wheeler (see here).

One out-of-the-box nominee for the Aquatic Safety Award could be Inspector Jack Haskins of the South Africa Police Service. The K9 Search and Rescue officer plays a major role in implementing the safety protocols and procedures behind the scenes at the aQuellé Midmar Mile in Pietermatizburg, South Africa.

Inspector Haskins has been with the South African Police Service Dog Unit for a number of years covering a variety of crimes and rescues together with his dogs Udaine, a Belgian Shepherd, and Butch, a black Labrador cross pointer.

Inspector Haskins has been with the South African Police Service Dog Unit, working hand-in-hand with Midmar Mile race director Wayne Riddin at the Midmar Mile. He and his dogs are trusted with maintaining a lookout for individuals who are in distress. He offers a number of pre-race safety tips for the thousands who gather for the annual Midmar Mile:

1. Train well in advance of the event.
2. Do not only train in a swimming pool, but also in the open water.
3. Compete in other open water events in order to get used to other swimmers around you.
4. Train in all weather conditions.
5. Take care at the start entering the water with so many competitors around you.
6. If you experience difficulty in the water, raise your hand to signal help.
7. If you are in serious trouble, attract the attention of other swimmers by keeping your hand in the air.
8. If you are a competitor and see another swimmer in distress, call the nearest lifeguard.
9. After you finish, return to your family and not the nearest pub for an after-swim party.
10. Do not party the night before.
11. Do not swim under the influence of alcohol.

Nominations are accepted until January 4th 2015 and should include data to support the nomination as well as a brief biography on the nominee. Nominations may be sent to:

Bob Duenkel via bduenkel@ishof.org
International Swimming Hall of Fame
1 Hall of Fame Drive
Fort Lauderdale, FL 33316

Copyright © 2014 by World Open Water Swimming Association

The Yin And Yang Of The Big Apple

Photo courtesy of John Keller. Article courtesy of WOWSA, Huntington Beach, California.

"I haven’t done the swim without thinking of quitting or wondering why I would come back to do it again," recalls Kristian Rutford of Nebraska about swimming the Manhattan Island Marathon Swim.

But the depths to which he goes and the demons that he encounters during the 28.5-mile circumnavigation around New York City are apparently not sufficient to keep the accountant away from the annual race in the Big Apple.

This year, Rutford completed his 20th circumnavigation, a significant landmark in the 99-year history of athletes swimming around Manhattan.

Rutford completed the following Manhattan Island Marathon Swims:

1. August 1988 - fifth in 7:48.56
2. August 1989 - sixth in 7:56.39
3. August 1990 - fourth in 7:10.04
4. August 1991 - second in 7:06.44
5. August 1992 - solo in 5:53.57 (record at the time)
6. August 1993 - first in 7:26.30
7. August 1995 - solo reverse direction in 17:48.30 (first)
8. August 1996 - fourth in 7:33.13
9. July 1997 - fourth in 7:26.26
10. July 1998 - fifth in 7:47.31
11. June 1999 - fourth in 7:10.24
12. September 2003 - solo in 8:36.15
13. July 2004 - eighth in 7:51.18
14. June 2007 - 13th in 9:51.03
15. July 2008 - eighth in 7:55.17
16. June 2010 - 11th in 8:21.15
17. June 2011 - 16th in 8:18.45
18. June 2012 - 12th in 8:10.29
19. August 2013 - quiet swim in 8:22.20
20. June 2014 - 1st group 2 in 8:42.53

Copyright © 2014 by World Open Water Swimming Association

Kimberley Chambers Dogs It With Blueseventy

Courtesy of WOWSA, Huntington Beach, California.

Not only is Kimberley Chambers one of the few people in history to have completed the Oceans Seven, she is also instinctively creative with a twinkle in her eye.

The diehard bioprene swimmer has one sponsor, the wetsuit company blueseventy.

Other than the deep New Zealand roots of both swimmer and company, one would like the neoprene-oriented corporation has nothing in common with the marathon swimmer who eschews anything and everything heat-retentive.

But on her behalf, blueseventy, the wetsuit and tech suit specialist company, donates a percentage of its sales to her charity of choice, Warrior Canine Connections. The Warrior Canine Connections provides service dogs to veterans with post-traumatic stress syndrome.

Copyright © 2014 by World Open Water Swimming Association

Chloë McCardel Achieves Her Goal

Courtesy of McCardel Media, North Ryde, Australia.

Australian marathon swimmer Chloë McCardel become the first person to swim 126 km unassisted in open water under Marathon Swimmers Federation rules. Taking 42 hours 30 minutes, the 29-year-old swam from Lighthouse Beach on the southern tip of Eleuthera Island in the Bahamas as planned on Monday, finishing on Nassau around 1 am local time on Wednesday morning.

With Dave Barra and Brianne Yeates onboard her escort boat, it is expected that the Marathon Swimmers Federation will ratify McCardel's swim as history's longest open water solo, continuous, unassisted marathon swim.

The 7-time English Channel swimmer arrived exhausted, greeted by a group of locals and media including Channel Seven Australia, her television media partner, and was escorted by husband Paul McQueeney and her support crew for a medical check-up. McQueeney, who traveled alongside her on the support boat and managed her feeding stops, said, “I know she will take some time to recover from this massive achievement which she has spent her entire swimming career preparing for. She is elated at successfully setting this record in this way, and is a very, very proud Australian.”

McCardel is expected to remain in the Bahamas until comfortable enough to travel and is expected to arrive back in Australia in early November.

Copyright © 2014 by World Open Water Swimming Association

Erwin Ruijsink Complete Curaçao Crossing

Courtesy of WOWSA, Huntington Beach, California.

Erwin Ruijsink, a Lieutenant Commander in the Royal Netherlands Navy, finally realized his dream swim.

"Today, I finally did my crossing from Klein Curaçao to Curaçao."

Previously, Ruijsink had planned to attempt a tandem crossing together with André Nottelman and Niko Kluyver. The pair completed an unprecedented 26.1 km crossing from Klein Curaçao to Santa Barbara Beach on Curaçao in September.

But Ruijsink could not join in their tandem crossing as planned because he unexpectedly suffered from chikungunya, an infection and joint pain caused by the Chikungunya virus by mosquitoes.

But he finally got over the disease and went back to Plan A.

"The weather conditions were OK with little swells up to 1.5 meters from behind," Ruijsink explained about his 13.2 km crossing in 3 hours 36 minutes that finished on Oostpunt. He averaged 1:38 per 100 meters as he was escorted by the RNLN Marines and observed by Gladwin de Lanoi, a certified FINA official from Curaçao.

Upper photo shows Gladwin de Lanoi congratulating Ruijsink after the swim was completed. Lower photo shows Ruijsink soon after his start on Curaçao.

Copyright © 2014 by World Open Water Swimming Association

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Swimisodes To Premier On November 5th

Courtesy of WOWSA, Huntington Beach, California.

Open water swimmer Lexie Kelly and Olympic gold medalist Rebecca Soni [shown above], together with established pool swimming stars Roland Schoeman (South Africa), Junya Koga (Japan) and Zach Hayden (U.S.A.) will premier on The Race Club's much-anticipated Swimisodes on November 5th.

The swimmers, together with Olympian Gary Hall, will demonstrate swimming techniques, yoga for swimmers, dryland training program, stretching, nutrition, and mental training on the Swimisodes program.

Copyright © 2014 by World Open Water Swimming Association

When Pool Decks Freeze Over

Photo of Ram Barkai courtesy of Nuala Moore.

As we slipped into a pool of slightly less-than-normal water temperatures and didn't warm up for 50 meters, our thoughts went immediately to ice swimmers like Ram Barkai and Nuala Moore who regularly test themselves in water too unimaginably cold for mere mortals.

Copyright © 2014 by World Open Water Swimming Association

Adam Walker Serves With One Young World

Courtesy of WOWSA, Huntington Beach, California.

Adam Walker served as a Counsellor with One Young World in Dublin, Ireland where he mingled and inspired leaders from a number of industries, markets and countries.

One Young World was founded in 2009 and gathers together the brightest young people from around the world, empowering them to make lasting connections to create positive change. Its annual Summit, held this past weekend, is where the most valuable young talent from global and national companies, NGO's, universities and other forward-thinking organisations are joined by world leaders, acting as the One Young World Counsellors.

"It was a great honour and an unbelievable experience, sharing stories with ex-presidents an astronaut and others including Boris Becker, Sol Cambell and Kirani Williams."

For more information on One Young World, visit here.

Copyright © 2014 by World Open Water Swimming Association

Team Brazil Ready for 2015 FINA 10K World Cup Series

Courtesy of WOWSA, Huntington Beach, California.

The landscape for the 2015 FINA 10K Marathon Swimming World Cup series has changed slightly with the traditional venues in Santos, Brazil [Maratona Aquática Internacional de Santos - Unisanta], Eliat, Israel and Shantou, China off the table for next year.

But Team Brazil will surely be on top of its game for the 2015 FINA 10K Marathon Swimming World Cup Series that will include the following races:

1st race - February 7th - La Patagones Viedma (Argentina)
2nd race - May 2nd - Cancún (Mexico)
3rd race - June 27th - Setúbal Bay (Portugal)
4th race - July 31st - Lac St-Jean (Canada), part of the Traversee international du Lac St-Jean
5th race - July 31st - Lac Magog (Canada), part of the Traversée Internationale du lac Memphrémagog
6th race - August 8th - Traversee international du Lac Mégantic (Canada)
7th race - October 12th - Chun'an (China)
8th race - October 17th - Hong Kong (Hong Kong)

Team Brazil is represented by Diogo Villarinho, Allan do Carmo, Ana Marcela Cunha, and Poliana Okimoto.

Copyright © 2014 by World Open Water Swimming Association

2015 FINA Open Water Swimming Grand Prix Circuit

Courtesy of WOWSA, Huntington Beach, California.

Pilar Geijo of Argentina and Silvie Rybárová of the Czech Republic were co-champions of the 2014 FINA Open Water Swimming Grand Prix. The pair, along with their male counterpart, Joanes Hedel of France, have ended their ultra marathon swimming seasons for 2014, but they are now shifting gears to preparing for the 2015 season.

FINA just announced its dates for next year's Grand Prix series:

1st Race: February 1st- 57 km Maratón Acuática Internacional Santa Fe - Coronda, Argentina
2nd Race: February 8th - 88 km Maratón Hernandarias-Paraná, Argentina
4th Race: April 25th - 15 km Maratón Cancún, Mexico
5th Race: July 25th - 32 km Traversée Internationale du lac St-Jean, Canada
6th Race: August 1st - 34 km Traversée Internationale du lac Memphrémagog, Canada
7th Race: TBC - 33 km Ohrid Lake Swim Marathon, Macedonia
8th Race: September 6 - 36 km Maratona del Golfo Capri-Napoli, Italy

Copyright © 2014 by World Open Water Swimming Association

Whose Record Will Chloë McCardel Break?

Courtesy of WOWSA, Huntington Beach, California.

29-year-old Chloë McCardel is accompanied by Dave Barra and Brianne Yeates of the Marathon Swimmers Federation on today's 127 km (78.9-mile) ocean swim attempt in the Bahamas. So far, she is flying fast as she has averaged 3.4 km per hour over the first 16 hours of her swim according to Evan Morrison of the Marathon Swimmers Federation.

McCardel's attempt from the southern tip of Eleuthera to Montague Beach at Nassau in the Bahamas is being covered by Channel Seven Australia, her television media partner present on her escort boat. Her progress can be observed virtually here.

McCardel announced that if she is successful as is expected based on her current pace and conditions, she will complete the longest solo, continuous, unassisted marathon swim in open water in history. In her press announcements, it is not specific whose record she is breaking. Typically, in a acknowledgement of one's predecessors, the current record holder is mentioned in press releases. So we wondered, "What other open water swims have been comparable to McCardel's 127 km (78.9-mile) ocean swim attempt?"

There have been several longer river swims, but these have been in freshwater and downstream so the conditions and venues are not comparable:

* John Sigmund (USA) 292 miles (470 km) down the Mississippi River (Missouri, USA) in 1940 in 89 hours 46 minutes
* Charles Zibelman (USA) 288 miles (463 km) downstream in the Hudson River (USA) in 1938 in 74 hours 0 minutes
* Abdul Latif Abou Heif (Egypt) 285 miles (458 km) downstream in River de la Plata (Argentina) in 1970 in 60 hours 0 minutes
* Pedro A Candiotti (Argentina) 281 miles (452 km) downstream in River de la Plata (Argentina) in 1935 in 84 hours 0 minutes
* Pedro A Candiotti (Argentina) 211 miles (339 km) downstream in River de la Plata (Argentina) in 1931 in 71 hours 55 minutes
* Pedro A Candiotti (Argentina) 210 miles (337 km) downstream in River de la Plata (Argentina) in 1930 in 66 hours 15 minutes
* Pedro A Candiotti (Argentina) 205 miles (330 km) downstream in River de la Plata (Argentina) in 1943 in 74 hours 30 minutes
* Imre Szenasi (Hungary) 136 miles (219 km) in the River Tisza (Romania) in 1962 in 44 hours 50 minutes
* Batista Pereira (Portugal) 128 miles (206 km) down the Tejo River (Portugal) in 1959 in 28 hours 43 minutes
* Vojislav Mijić (Serbia) 86.3 miles (139 km) down the Sava River, Serbia in 1992 in 36 hours 30 minutes
* Skip Storch (USA) 85.5 miles (137 km) in a triple circumnavigation around Manhattan Island (New York, USA) in 2007 in 32 hours 52 minutes
* Imre Szenasi (Hungary) 81 miles (130 km) in the River Tisza (Romania) in 1969 in 41 hours 40 minutes

Long sea swims are as follows:

* Penny Palfrey (Australia) 67.2 miles (108 km) from Little Cayman to Grand Cayman (Cayman Islands) in 2011 in 40 hours 41 minutes
* Alison Streeter MBE (UK) 63 miles (101.3 km) in a three-way crossing of the English Channel (England-France) in 1990 in 34 hours 40 minutes
* Philip Rush (New Zealand) 63 miles 101.3 km) in a three-way crossing of the English Channel (England-France) in 1987 in 28 hours 21 minutes
* Jon Erikson (USA) 63 miles (101.3 km) in a three-way crossing of the English Channel (England-France) in 1981 in 38 hours 27 minutes
* Kevin Murphy (UK) 56 miles (90 km) around the Isle of Wight (UK) in 1971 in 26 hours 51 minutes
* Michael Read MBE (UK) 56 miles (90 km) around the Isle of Wight (UK) in 1973 in 24 hours 36 minutes
* Alison Streeter MBE (UK) 56 miles (90 km) around the Isle of Wight (UK) in 1984 in 21 hours 2 minutes
* Anna Wardley (UK) 56 miles (90 km) around the Isle of Wight (UK) in 2013 in 26 hours 33 minutes
* Otto Kemmerich (Germany) 50 miles (81 km) across Danzig in the Baltic Sea in 1928 in 43 hours 30 minutes
* Alper Sunaçoğlu (Turkey) 48.4 miles (78 km) from Turkey to Cyprus in the Mediterranean Sea in 2010 in 26 hours 15 minutes
* Sean O’Connell (Bermuda) 47 miles (75 km) around Bermuda in 1977 in 43 hours 27 minutes

Long bay, canal and lake swims are as follows:

* Zhang Jian (China) 76.5 miles (123 km) in Bohai Bay (China) in 2000 in 50 hours 22 minutes
* Vicki Keith (Canada) 64 miles (103 km) in a two-way crossing of Lake Ontario (Canada) in 1987 in 56 hours 10 minutes
* Abdul Latif Abou Heif (Egypt) 60 miles (96.5 km) in Lake Michigan (Illinois, USA) in 1963 in 34 hours 38 minutes
* Ted Erikson (USA) 60 miles (96.5 km) in Lake Michigan (Illinois, USA) in 1963 in 37 hours 31 minutes
* Yuko Matsuzaki (Japan) 51.5 miles (83 km) in Lake Cane (Florida, USA) in 2008 in 33 hours 24 minutes
* Mihir Sen (India) 51 miles (82 km) across the Panama Canal (Pacific-Atlantic Oceans) in 1966 in 35 hours 30 minutes
* Vicki Keith (Canada) 49.8 miles (80.2 km, all butterfly) crossing of Lake Ontario (Canada) in 2005 in 63 hours 40 minutes
* Vicki Keith (Canada) 48 miles (77.2 km) in Lake Huron (USA-to-Canada) in 1988 in 46 hours 55 minutes
* Kevin Murphy (UK) 48 miles (77.2 km in Lake Balaton (Hungary) in 1973 in 43 hours 15 minutes
* Vicki Keith (Canada) 45 miles (72 km) in Lake Michigan (Illinois, USA) in 1988 in 52 hours 45 minutes

Long ocean swims include the following:

* Tina Neill (USA) 52 miles (km) from San Clemente Island to California (USA) in 2012 in 28 hours 41 minutes
* Cindy Cleveland (USA) 48 miles (77 km) in a circumnavigation around Catalina Island (California, USA) in 1979 in 34 hours 24 minutes
* Forrest Nelson (USA) 48 miles (77 km) in a circumnavigation around Catalina Island (California, USA) in 2011 in 25 hours 35 minutes

Two sea swims have been reportedly longer, but these have only been acknowledged by the Guinness Book of World Records:

* Veljko Rogošić (Croatia) 139.8 miles (225 km) across the Adriatic Sea in Italy in 2006 in 50 hours 10 minutes
* Martin Strel (Slovenia) 100 miles (162 km) from Lignano to Ravenna in the Adriatic Sea (Italy) in 1994 in 55 hours 11 minutes

According to the widely respected marathon swimmer and governing body president Scott Zornig, when McCardel is successful, she will break Penny Palfrey's historic world record swim of 67.2 miles (108 km) in Cayman Islands, performed in 2011 in 40 hours 41 minutes.

If the record is passed from Australian swimmer to Australian swimmer as expected later today, the athletes from Down Under will again demonstrate their excellence in the open water.

The remaining part of McCardel's swim can be tracked here.

Copyright © 2014 by World Open Water Swimming Association

Lookout For Natural Marine Phenomena

Courtesy of Donnie Griggs and his colleagues of One Harbor Church at Cape Lookout National Seashore off the coast of North Carolina, U.S.A.

On October 9th, Donnie Griggs and the leaders of One Harbor Church witnessed sharks feeding on a school of blue fish. Griggs is the lead pastor of One Harbor Church and an avid waterman who often spearfishes, dives, swims and surfs at Cape Lookout.

Griggs grew up in and around salt water and continues to pray that God would give him gills.

Copyright © 2014 by World Open Water Swimming Association

Monday, October 20, 2014

Desafío Nonthue 2015 In San Martín de los Andes

Courtesy of WOWSA, Huntington Beach, California.

Desafío Nonthue is an open water swim on January 25th 2015 held in the clear waters of Lake Lacar in San Martín de los Andes, Argentina.

For information on the 5th annual 1.6 km and 3.2 km races, visit here.

Copyright © 2014 by World Open Water Swimming Association

Sunny Start To Metsi Open Water Swim Series

Courtesy of Brenton Williams in South Africa.

Over 160 swimmers took advantage of the sunny conditions to participate in Round One of the Metsi Open Water Swim Series which took place at Marina Martinique in South Africa's Jeffreys Bay this past weekend.

First into the 20°C water were the 10 km marathon swimmers with Byron Lockett taking first place in 2 hours 23 minutes and Rebecca Newman first among the women in 2 hours 36 minutes. Iain and Robert Geddes finished in second and third position respectively. Amy Mardon completing her first 10 km swim in a time of 2 hours 56 minutes and took second position in the women's division.

Daniel Jones won the 5 km event from Dylan Smith with Bradley Reen taking third position in the men’s race. Kirsten Marriot continued her dominance of the 5 km swim in the Eastern Cape as she won the women's division in 1:11:25 with Hannah Haswell and Tracy Gous taking second and third positions, respectively.

Jason Jones won the 3 km event beating Nicholas Adam and Dylan Smith into second and third places. Jessica Canter won the women's race with Amica de Jager and Brigitte Muller taking the other podium positions.

"Veteran swimmer PJ Duffy had a great swim and was not far off the pace set by his younger competitors," reported event organiser Brenton Williams.

Credence Pattinson won the 1 km swim over Wayne Jones and Kevin Raine, while the top three finishers in the women's race were Teagen Strydom, Kayla Holtshausen and Bianca Ansley.

Conditions were excellent for the event, sponsored by Metsi Water Solutions, and there was some great racing at Marina Martinique," said Williams. "The Aquabear Swim Club from Port Elizabeth is leading the participation league after Round One, followed by BEST. Round two of the Metsi Open Water Swim Series will take place on 16 November at Marina Martinique. Entries have opened at www.swimmingplus.com."

Photo of the start is courtesy of
Clive Wright.

Copyright © 2014 by World Open Water Swimming Association

C’est Officiel, Nage de Fer

Courtesy of WOWSA, Huntington Beach, California.

Nejib Belhedi announced his return to the Kerkennah - Sfax Channel that he first crossed in 1991.

His 18 km Iron Swim (Nage de Fer) is an environmental swim in 16°C waters scheduled for a 5-day window in January. Belhedi plans that the Nage de Fer will attract attention to Kerkennah and actions to save this Tunisian island from submerging under the sea. Belhedi will cross the channel pulling passengers in one of his escort boats, aided by the Oued Ellouza tide.

"It's possible to attract media attention that Kerkennah Islands is on its way to disappear as well as Oued Ellouza. It's possible that open water swimming can play an important role to heighten the awareness of the local, national and international communities to protect Kerkennah before it will be so late and to preserve its marine wildlife. We can definitively preserve the ecosystem today for the future generations tomorrow. This is why I swim."

Copyright © 2014 by World Open Water Swimming Association

Distance Matters In Tampa Bay

Courtesy of WOWSA, Huntington Beach, California.

Ron Collins of Distance Matters prepared this panoramic view of the mainland finish of a Catalina Channel crossing. When channel swimmers are told, "We can see the shore," this view is usually what they see.

Collins himself completed the swim on his second attempt as well as completing the Triple Crown of Open Water Swimming as well as becoming the first person to swim across Tampa Bay, Florida in 1998. He later founded the 24-mile Tampa Bay Marathon Swim that retraces his pioneering swim.

The 18th annual Tampa Bay Marathon Swim will be on April 25th 2015. It is not an easy swim and a good test for channel swimmers and those who challenge themselves to the marathon swims from the Triple Crown of Open Water Swimming and the Oceans Seven to the Five Oceans and other tests of endurance from Round Jersey to Rottnest Channel Swim.

Since Collins was first staged the event in 1998, the 24-miler has drawn competitors from across the United States, Great Britain, Guatemala, Italy, Mexico, Australia, Japan, Argentina, Dominican Republic, Germany, India, Canada, and the Cayman Islands.

24 solo and relay entries are accepted and are now available at www.DistanceMatters.com. For more information, contact Ron Collins at collins@tampabay.rr.comcollins@tampabay.rr.com.

The Tampa Bay Marathon Swim records are as follows:

* Overall / men's record: Chris Derks, 2002, 7 hours 41 minutes
* Women's record: Penny Palfrey in 2008, 7 hours 51 minutes
* Longest time in water: Arnie Bellini in 2014, 16 hours 17 minutes
* First swimmer: Ron Collins in 1998, 9 hours 52 minutes
* First women: Gail Rice in 1998, 8 hours 34 minutes
* Fastest 3-person relay: Team Hammerhead in 2006, 7 hours 53 minutes
* Fastest 6-person relay: The Sharks in 2006, 7 hours 39 minutes
* Oldest male swimmer: 14:21 - Carl Selles in 2014, 14 hours 21 minutes at the age of 67
* Oldest female swimmer: 15:22 - Ann von Spiegelfeld in 2014, 15 hours 22 minutes at the age of 52

Collins on creating the above panoramic view of the California coastline, "It actually took quite an effort to put that picture together, but I was watching one of our swimmers all day, and wanted to put together a visual."

Copyright © 2014 by World Open Water Swimming Association

A Thank You Gift from WOWSA

WOWSA is celebrating the
1-Year Anniversary of the monthly Open Water Swimming Magazine
by giving you a free copy of the anniversary issue.

Open Water Swimming Magazine Anniversary Issue
File Size: 13MB


Download the file to your computer, and then right-click to extract the magazine which is inside the zip folder. The magazine is in PDF format.

CLICK HERE to download your free copy now.

Open Water Swimming Magazine

Open Water Swimming Magazine

The Open Water Swimming Magazine is the monthly magazine entirely focused on open water swimming heroes and heroines of every age, ability, and background. Published by the World Open Water Swimming Association, the Open Water Swimming Magazine is a free benefit to WOWSA members.

WOWSA Member Benefits include 12 issues of the Open Water Swimming Magazine, the annual 276-page Open Water Swimming Almanac, a free listing in Sponsor My Swim, outstanding product discounts from FINIS, an entry in Openwaterpedia and more...

The Other Shore

The Other Shore follows world record holder and legendary swimmer Diana Nyad as she comes out of a thirty-year retirement to re-attempt an elusive dream: swimming 103 miles non-stop from Cuba to Florida without the use of a shark cage. Her past and present collide in her obsession with a feat that nobody has ever accomplished. At the edge of The Devil’s Triangle, tropical storms, sharks, venomous jellyfish, and one of the strongest ocean currents in the world, all prove to be life-threatening realities. Timothy Wheeler’s documentary brings Diana Nyad’s extraordinary adventure to life as Diana sets out to prove that will and determination are all you need to make the unimaginable possible.

2014 Open Water Swimming Almanac

An Almanac for Open Water Swimming

An almanac is essentially a body of knowledge which is so complete that it enables people in different fields to make predictions about the future of their respective industries.

This, for example, was the purpose of the traditional farmers almanacs. It enabled farmers to determine as accurately as possible which crops to plant for the greatest harvests in a given year.

But the farmers almanac was just one example among many.
There are, of course, many different kinds of almanacs.

In fact, there is even one for open water swimming...

Preview the Open Water Swimming Almanac:

The trends are very clear.
The tide is rising for open water swimming.


Open Water Swimming Event Sanctioning

World Professional Marathon Swimming Federation

Open Water Race Calendar

Coaches Education Program