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Tuesday, October 21, 2014

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

From Kingdom Comes Phil White

Courtesy of WOWSA, Huntington Beach, California.

From indoors to out. From lawyering to organizing, Phil White shifted gears over the last few years from a powerful attorney to a passionate race director.

On October 22nd at Lago Trattoria, White will celebrate the first anniversary of his Kingdom Games.

"It’s hard to believe. Kingdom Games has made it through the first 12 months of its young life offering over 40 days of running, biking, swimming, triathlon, kayaking, Nordic skating, pond hockey, and speedskating in the heart of the Northeast Kingdom of Vermont and the Eastern Townships of Quebec. But we did. And we had a blast. Over 1,300 participants this year. The events have drawn athletes ages 4 to 78 from 36 different states, 5 Canadian provinces, Great Britain, Ireland, India, Mexico, Australia, United Arab Emirates, and Saudi Arabia."

Like every good, creative and innovative event organizer, White not only was relentlessly energetic, but he also garnered the support of over 125 volunteers serving over 400 volunteer days this year.

"Putting on the Kingdom Games couldn’t happen without the support of our underwriting sponsors: Community National Bank, North Country Hospital, Newport City Renaissance Corporation and The Foundation Christian Vachon or our many other sponsors, Jay Peak Resort , The Town of Derby, Vermont Sports Magazine, Passumpsic Savings Bank, Northeast Delta Dental, EastSide Restaurant, Lyndon State College, The City of Newport, Community Financial Services Group, Lago Trattoria, Barton Area Chamber of Commerce, Derby Village Store, Newport City Inn & Suites, Northpoint Chrysler, Dodge, Ram, Jeep, The Front Desk, and Louis Garneau.

It also couldn’t be done without our partners, Kingdom Trails, Craftsbury Outdoor Center, Northwoods Stewardship Center, The Old Stone House Museum, Orleans County Citizen Advocacy, Barton Area Chamber of Commerce, Newport Live, North Country Hospital, Newport City Department of Parks and Recreation, Green Mountain United Way, Umbrella, Toys for Kids, The Village Bike Shop, North Country Chamber of Commerce, Marathon Skating International, US Winter Swimming Association, United States Masters Swimming and the World Open Water Swimming Association as well as our supportive friends at Clyde River Recreation, Derby Village Store, ADA Flagging, Newport Natural Foods, Bum Wraps, Front Desk, The City of Magog, Memphremagog Press, Brault’s Slaughterhouse, and Couture’s Maple Shop and B&B, and Fran and Melanie Azur.

One of the best parts of these events is when they draw our community together to welcome athletes from around the country and around the world. Even better, when we see our kids learn to love running, biking, swimming, or skating in our events, side-by-side with some of the most experienced endurance athletes in North America. And just the very best is when we see adults stretch themselves, year after year to accomplish things they never dared to dream when they first got started in our events.

These events would be nothing without the enthusiastic, high-spirited participation of our athletes, young and old. Your enthusiasm is contagious. We love seeing the beauty of our community through your fresh eyes. Your discipline, determination and accomplishments are inspiring

Photos courtesy of Phil White.

Copyright © 2014 by World Open Water Swimming Association

Anthony Does Another In Anacapa

Courtesy of WOWSA, Huntington Beach, California.

Anthony McCarley just can't get enough.

The busy executive from Pennsylvania has completed 80 miles of marathon swimming since June 28th. After today's 7 hour 48 minute crossing of the 11-mile (18 km) Anacapa Channel off the shore of California , he recalls his journey. "87 total miles this year. Throw in C3 and the English Channel and it has been a wild 14 months. I am tired..."

Sounds like he is already planning for an encore in 2015.

Copyright © 2014 by World Open Water Swimming Association

Sunday, October 19, 2014

Chloë McCardel Is Ready, Set To Go A Really Long Way

Courtesy of WOWSA, Huntington Beach, California.

Following along the courageous, hard-nosed wake of her Australian predecessors like Annette Kellerman, Susie Maroney, Linda McGill, Shelley Taylor-Smith, Tammy van Wisse, Melissa Cunningham, and Penny Palfrey, 29-year-old Chloë McCardel has the DNA and confidence of an extreme athlete.

The conditions are just about perfect,“ McCardel said about her 127 km (78.9-mile) ocean swim in the Bahamas where she will not benefit from any positive currents and most probably will face adverse currents. "The weather could become unsettled in the coming week, so it’s a great time to make a start. This is not a race, so the good conditions over the next few days means that I can pace myself, maintain a good rhythm and know that there is clear water is ahead of me for the next 127 kilometres or so.”

McCardel will begin her swim on Monday morning from Lighthouse Beach on the southern tip of Eleuthera and is expected to finish on Montague Beach at Nassau. Her progress will be tracked by GPS which can be followed here.

She is expected to swim through Monday night and part of Tuesday night before finishing what is being touted as the longest open water solo continuous unassisted marathon swim conducted under the auspices of the Marathon Swimmers Federation. While other organizations like the Guinness Book of World Records have recognized longer solo swims, McCardel's swim is conducted under the most stringently defined rules of the Marathon Swimmers Federation.

Her team is accompanied by Channel Seven Australia, her television media partner for this attempt, David Barra representing the Marathon Swimmers Federation, and a select group of experienced professionals who will help confirm her record-setting swim. Her course can be tracked here.

Copyright © 2014 by World Open Water Swimming Association

RCP Tiburon Mile Getting Ready

Courtesy of WOWSA, Huntington Beach, California.

Chalk up the 2-year delay to ObamaCare.

The RCP Tiburon Mile took a year sabbatical off due to its organizer having to focus its core business on the new insurance regulations in the United States, but Bob Placak and crew are back at it planning for their US$10,000-winner-take-all 2015 event in Tiburon, California.

RCP Events announced September 20th 2015 as the date for its anticipated 15th RCP Tiburon Mile.

Registration is open at www.rcptiburonmile.com.

"To date, the RCP Tiburon Mile has raised over US$1.4 Million for charity. Hospice by the Bay is our designated charity for 2015," explained Placak. "Over 800 swimmers, ages 6-75, from 20 countries will swim one nautical mile from Angel Island to Sam’s Anchor Café in Tiburon."

Its participants, volunteers, and beneficiaries are looking forward to its return.

Copyright © 2014 by World Open Water Swimming Association

Smart Shopping While Swimming

Courtesy of WOWSA, Huntington Beach, California.

Triathlons and marathon runs do it very well.

Either before, but usually after large triathlons or marathon runs, there are large crowded expos of products, services and companies that athletes and fans can enjoy browsing and shopping.

Some open water swimming competitions have their own post-race expo, but most races only have a few sponsors and vendors that show up and exhibit their products and services on the beach or shoreline.

But what if the open water swimming world could create a virtual expo like the South Korean market has developed?

With the proof of concept of the world's first virtual shopping center in Korea, the innovative retail industry has shown that consumers will purchase products shown on LCD screens that allow them to order products by touching the screen or taking photos of QR codes. Imagine something similar where a panel with images from FINIS, Speedo, Arena, TYR, blueseventy, goggle manufacturers, sunscreen and sunglass companies, training equipment providers, swimming holiday camps and clinics, and other races would enable and entice swimmers to browse and shop easily after a swim.

That would be totally cool, convenient and creative.

Copyright © 2014 by World Open Water Swimming Association

It's Feeding Time

Courtesy of WOWSA at the feeding station on Lake Castaic at the 2014 USA Swimming National Open Water Swimming Championships.

Copyright © 2014 by World Open Water Swimming Association

Blooming In Brazil, Changing Of The Guard

Courtesy of WOWSA, Huntington Beach, California.

Brazil is hot right now, especially with 25-year-old Allan do Carmo and 22-year-old Ana Marcela Cunha standing on top of the FINA 10K Marathon Swimming World Cup standings.

Together with Poliana Okimoto, Brazilian swimmers are showing the open water swimming investments by Confederação Brasileira de Desportos Aquáticos (the national governing body of Brazilian aquatics) are paying off handsome dividends.

Do Carmo was able to stand on the finish podium for the first time after the competition in the 28ºC waters of Hong Kong. Meanwhile, Cunha added her third series title after initial victories in the 2010 and 2012 seasons. Cunha finished with five gold medals, one silver and two bronze while Do Carmo finished with two gold medals, two silver and one bronze. In total, Brazil's Confederação Brasileira de Desportos Aquáticos ended its most impressive World Cup season with 20 podium finishes (8 golds, 7 silvers and 5 bronzes).

Coming off the back of its dominating overall performance at the 2013 FINA World Championships, the epicenter of elite open water swimming is rapidly shifting from the Old Guard (Russia, Germany, Italy) and Power Players (Great Britain, Netherlands, USA) to the Southern Hemisphere for the first time.

Brazilian athletes' history on the FINA World Cup circuit include:

* 2007: Poliana Okimoto - 3rd place overall
* 2008: Ana Marcela Cunha - 3rd place overall
* 2009: Poliana Okimoto - 1st place overall
* 2009: Allan do Carmo - 2nd place
* 2010: Ana Marcela Cunha - 1st place overall
* 2012: Ana Marcela Cunha - 1st place overall
* 2012: Allan do Carmo - 3rd place overall
* 2013: Allan do Carmo - 3rd place overall
* 2013: Ana Marcela Cunha - 3rd place
* 2014: Ana Marcela Cunha - 1st place overall
* 2014: Allan do Carmo - 1st place overall

Brazilian athletes' podium finishes during the FINA 10K Marathon Swimming World Cup circuit:

Viedma, Argentina (February 1st)
* Poliana Okimoto, gold
* Ana Marcela Cunha, silver

Cancun, Mexico (March 5th)
* Poliana Okimoto, silver
* Ana Marcela Cunha, bronze
* Diogo Villarinho, bronze

Setúbal, Portugal (June 28th)
* Ana Marcela Cunha, gold
* Poliana Okimoto, silver
* Allan do Carmo, silver

Roberval, Canada (July 24th)
* Ana Marcela Cunha, gold

Magog, Canada (August 1st)
* Ana Marcela Cunha, gold
* Allan do Carmo, bronze

Megantic, Canada (August 9th)
* Ana Marcela Cunha, gold
* Allan do Carmo, gold

Chun'an, China (October 11th)
* Ana Marcela Cunha, gold
* Allan do Carmo, gold
* Poliana Okimoto, silver
* Diogo Villarinho, bronze

Hong Kong, China (October 18th)
* Allan do Carmo, silver
* Poliana Okimoto, silver
* Ana Marcela Cunha, bronze

Both Do Carmo and Cunha won US$20,000 for capturing the FINA World Cup season title. If Okimoto had note sat out of three Canadian stages due to her cervical spine injury, she would have undoubtedly garnered even more points in the season's rankings.

The Brazilian swimmers of the Confederação Brasileira de Desportos Aquáticos benefit from its supporters that include title sponsor Correios – Patrocinador (post office), Bradesco/Lei de Incentivo Fiscal, Lei Agnelo/Piva, Governo Federal, Ministério do Esporte, Speedo, Sadia and the Universidade Estácio de Sá.

Copyright © 2014 by World Open Water Swimming Association

Back To The Future In Hong Kong

Courtesy of WOWSA, Huntington Beach, California.

It was only a matter of time before Anna Olasz of Hungary won a FINA 10K Marathon Swimming World Cup.

The young Hungarian first showed her potential in local races on the European continent, but then really debuted among the world's top echelon at the 2012 London Olympic Games qualification race in Portugal when she just missed out in representing her native country at the 2012 Olympic Games. Olasz just barely lost to eventual Olympic champion Éva Risztov and quickly started looking forward to 2016.

She eventually moved to Arizona in the United States for her college education, but the serious student-athlete continues to march up the pecking order among world's fastest open water swimmers. The Hong Hong race was her break-out performance where she faced a slew of top Olympians in Poliana Okimoto, Keri-Anne Payne, Ana Marcela Cunha, Melissa Gorman, and Angela Maurer. The Arizona State University student came through and came out in tough in an extremely tough and close race where the top 13 women finished within 15 seconds of one another.

The race also featured swimmers from Ecuador (Samantha Arevalo), Thailand (Benjaporn Sriphanomthorn, Ammiga Himathongkom, and Porsuda Viniyompong) - other emerging areas of interest in open water swimming.

Olasz and the other young, emerging athletes are showing the future is now as they look forward to 2016 and Rio de Janeiro's Olympic Games.

The results from the Hong Kong FINA 10K Marathon Swimming World Cup:

1. Anna Olasz, Hungary 2:05:20.7
2. Poliana Okimoto, Brazil 2:05:20.9
3. Keri-Anne Payne, Great Britain 2:05:22.2
4. Ana Marcela Cunha, Brazil 2:05:22.2
5. Charlotte Webby, New Zealand 2:05:30.3
6. Zaira Cardenas, Mexico 2:05:31.2
7. Jessica Walker, Australia 2:05:31.2
8. Melissa Gorman, Australia 2:05:32.6
9. Mariia Novikova, Russia 2:05:33.4
10. Olga Kozydub, Russia 2:05:33.4
11. Christine Jennings, USA 2:05:33.8
12. Angela Maurer, Germany 2:05:34.5
13. Montserrat Ortuna Clapera, Mexico 2:05:35.4
14. Yumi Kida, Japan 2:05:43.8
15. Anastasiia Azarova, Russia 2:05:46.2
16. Chelsea Gubecka, Australia 2:05:56.4
17. Samantha Arevalo, Ecuador 2:05:57.4
18. Patricia Castaneda, Mexico 2:05:59.5
19. Karla Šitić , Croatia 2:06:24.3
20. Angelina Kargaltseva, Russia 2:06:55.7
21. Danielle Huskisson, Great Britain 2:07:47.2
22. Yang Dandan, China 2:09:42.4
23. Risa Yoshioka, Japan 2:13:18.3
24. Aleksandea Sokolova, Russia 2:13:18.3
25. Miki Asayama, Japan 2:13:23.1
26. Kaoru Yamanaka, Japan 2:13:37.2
27. Benjaporn Sriphanomthorn, Thailand 2:15:30.6
28. Ni Yichen, China 2:15:39.3
29. Chan Fiona On Yi, Hong Kong 2:15:51.3
30. Nao Okubo, Japan 2:18:00.8
31. Ammiga Himathongkom, Thailand 2:23:03.4
32. Fu Yu-Ching, Taiwan 2:23:14.7
33. Sun Shin-Han, Taiwan 2:23:16.6
34. Lee Tiffany Wan Fung, Hong Kong 2:23:19.1
35. Chang Esme Wai, Hong Kong 2:27:58.9
36. Anna Gakhokidze, Kazakhstan 2:30:45.8
37. Wong Ming Yu Claudia, Hong Kong 2:32:44.5
38. Porsuda Viniyompong, Thailand 2:34:18.6
39. Kwok Cho Yiu, Hong Kong 2:34:21.7
DNF Emily Brunemann, USA
DNF Valeriia Ermakova, Russia
DNF Li Hannah Hang Fung, Hong Kong

Photo by MTI.

Copyright © 2014 by World Open Water Swimming Association

Saturday, October 18, 2014

Sharktoberfest Gives Reason To Admire Lenning, Locke

Courtesy of WOWSA, Huntington Beach, California.

Sharktoberfest was held on October 18th at the Gulf of the Farallones National Marine Sanctuary in Crissy Field, San Francisco.

The participants celebrated the return of the Great White Shark to the Gulf of the Farallones.

There are few active channel swimming venues around the world that are as protected as the Farallon Islands and that celebrate the increasing abundance of Great White Sharks.

It makes this year's successful Farallon Islands swims of Craig Lenning and Joseph Locke all the more impressive.

For a first-person account of Locke's swim, visit here. For more information on Lenning's swim, visit here.

Copyright © 2014 by World Open Water Swimming Association

Linda Kaiser Swims The Eight Seas...Quietly, Courageously

Courtesy of WOWSA, Huntington Beach, California.

Swim a channel or complete an open water swim nowadays and many swimmers describe their achievement on the social media. There are, of course, exceptions to this norm where a handful of swimmers, renowned among the community of channel swimmers, do plenty of under-the-radar or unannounced swims.

For these swimmers, self-satisfaction and personal success is all that they seek.

But there may be few athletes who have accomplished so much - while seeing so much marine life on their swims - as Linda Kaiser of Hawaii.

In addition to being the first and only woman to date to swim all 9 Hawaiian channels called the Eight Seas, Kaiser founded the Kaiwi Channel Swimmers Association and helps all Kaiwi Channel swimmers in any way that she can, even to the point of hosting them at her home. She also meets all the swimmers whenever and wherever they finish.

She has also volunteered with the Waikiki Roughwater Swim for over 25 years and is the organization's head of water safety, its treasurer and a member of its board of directors.

A shy, unassuming and humble swimmer, she explained a bit about her 9 channel swims throughout the state of Hawaii. In order, these swims include the following:

Hawaiian Channel #1: 8.8-mile (14.1 km) Auau Channel (Lanai to Maui)
August 19th 1989, 5 hours 11 minutes
"It was my first channel swim," recalls Kaiser. "The water was calm and between 78-80ºF (25-26ºC). I just missed the then-women's record by less than one minute."

Hawaiian Channel #2: 8.4-mile (13.5 km) Pailolo Channel (Maui to Molokai)
November 30th, 1990, 4 hours 47 minutes
"I was the first woman to swim this channel with the water temperature about 78ºF. The ocean was calm in the beginning of the swim, but the wind and chop came up over the last two hours and I saw my first big shark - about 12 feet - that circled me 4 times and then left."

Hawaiian Channel #3: 9.3-mile (14.9 km) Kalohi Channel (Molokai to Lanai)
September 21st 1991, 4 hours 30 minutes
"The water temperature was 80ºF with windy conditions from the start with lots of chop [throughout]."

Hawaiian Channel #4: 7-mile (11.2 km) Alalakeiki Channel (Maui to Kahoolawe)
April 14th 2001, 3 hours 30 minutes
"I was the first woman to swim this channel and the first time that this channel had been swum in this direction. The water temperature was between 76-78ºF with huge ocean swells and howling winds. The swell were 20 feet at times and my escort boat could not get near enough for feeds. I body surfed some of the swells and saw one shark at the beginning."

Hawaiian Channel #5: 17-mile (27.3 km) Kaulakahi Channel (Kauai to Niihau)
July 20th 2003, 10 hours 45 minutes
"I was the first woman and it was the first time that this channel had been swum. There were dolphins that swam with me off and on. The winds picked up during the second half of the swim with strong currents that pushing away from Niihau over the last 4 miles. We had to swim around the intended landing beach to another beach that wasn't rocky and had less surf."

Hawaiian Channel #6: 17-mile (27.3 km) Kealaikahiki Channel (Kahoolawe to Lanai)
September 11th 2005, 11 hours 53 minutes
"This was the first time that this channel had been swum. I was the first woman to swim this channel. There was calm water to begin, but it got rougher by mid-swim. There was a strong current pushing west away from the island [of Lanai]. At one point, it looked as though we might miss Lanai, but our course was correct and we finished just before sunset."

Hawaiian Channel #7: 26-mile (41.8 km) Kaiwi Channel (Molokai to Oahu)
September 21st 2007, 15 hours 0 minutes
"My first attempt was aborted after I swallowed a jellyfish and had to be pulled from the water with extreme cramping and spasms. I returned to Molokai a week later and swam through the night, finishing north of Sandy Beach. I had very good conditions with the water calm and water. I saw 2 sharks, but neither of them showed any aggression."

Hawaiian Channel #8: 30-mile (48.2 km) Alenuihaha Channel (Hawaii to Maui)
September 11-12th 2009, 16 hours 10 minutes
"I swam this channel a few months after being on Mike Spalding's escort boat when he was bitten by a cookie cutter shark. I started in the dark and swam very scared the entire night. There were lots of 'things' bumping into me all night and I was very glad to see the sunrise. But then I could also see the sharks. I had 3 sharks come very close while other sharks just swam around under me and kept their distance."

Hawaiian Channel #9: 72-mile (115.8 km) Kaieiewaho Channel (Oahu to Kauai)
November 20-22nd 2010, 47 hours 55 minutes
"This was done as a 6-person relay and was the first swim crossing of this channel. It was a horrible experience with constant jellyfish stings and very aggressive sharks. It was a horrible current most of the way with light winds and warm water. The funniest moment was at night when the escort boat alerted a tugboat and said we had swimmers in the water. The tugboat captain was speechless and came back a few minutes later, asking our captain to repeat what he just said."

Copyright © 2014 by World Open Water Swimming Association

Allan Do Carmo and Rogerio Arapiraca Team Up

Courtesy of WOWSA, Huntington Beach, California.

Allan do Carmo expressed his heartfelt gratitude to his long-time coach Rogerio Arapiraca of Brazil.

Over the last 8 years, the pair have been training and plotting to climb of the heap. Today, their dream was jointly realized as Do Carmo captured his first FINA 10K Marathon Swimming World Cup series title.

The victory put Bahia, Brazil in the epicenter of the elite marathon swimming community as Do Carmo joined his female teammate Ana Marcela Cunha as the FINA World Cup champions.

Copyright © 2014 by World Open Water Swimming Association

Things Are Looking Up For Do Carmo And Christian Reichert

Courtesy of WOWSA, Huntington Beach, California

Allan do Carmo [shown above] officially won the series title at the 2014 FINA 10K Marathon Swimming World Cup with a close second to Christian Reichert at the FINA season-ending race in Hong Kong today.

The race was close as usual and featured the fierce emerging rivalry of Brazil versus Germany within an international event. Like the FINA 10K Marathon Swimming World Cup results in Chunan Qiandaohu Lake in China last week, Brazil and Germany swept the top 5 places.

But this week, Germany's Christian Reichert took top honors over Do Carmo. Both ended with big smiles on their faces while the rest of the field heads back home to start training for the 2015 season and the 2016 Rio Olympic 10K qualification race that will be held in conjunction with the 2015 FINA World Championships.

Results from today's FINA 10K Marathon Swimming World Cup:

1. Christian Reichert, Germany 1:56.12.4
2. Allan do Carmo, Brazil 1:56:12.7
3. Andreas Waschburger, Germany 1:56:12.9
4. Diogo Villarinho, Brazil 1:56:14.0
5. Thomas Lurz, Germany 1:56:16.0
6. Jarrod Poort, Australia 1:56:17.0
7. Thomas Allen, Great Britain 1:56:18.4
8. Yasunari Hirai, Japan 1:56:18.4
9. Richard Weinberger, Canada 1:56:19.7
10. Kirill Abrosimov, Russia 1:56:19.7
11. Simon Huitenga, Australia 1:56:21.4
12. Christopher Bryan, Ireland 1:56:21.8
13. David Heron, USA 1:56:23.1
14. George O'Brien, Australia 1:56:23.5
15. Charles Peterson, USA 1:56:23.9
16. Shuhei Matsumura, Japan 1:56:24.0
17. Daniel Delgadillo, Mexico 1:56:24.3
18. Samuel Sheppard, Australia 1:56:28.6
19. Esteban Endenca, Ecuardor 1:56:39.6
20. Vitaliy Khudyakov, Kazakhstan 1:56:48.6
21. Daniel Fogg, Great Britain 1:57.08.8
22. Joshua Richardson, Australia 1:57:30.6
23. Yohsuke Miyamoto, Japan 1:57:58.4
24. Lachlan Colquhoun, Australia 1:58:13.7
25. Alfredo Villa Mejia, Mexico 1:58:14.1
26. Sean Ryan, USA 1:58:25.5
27. Troy Balvert, New Zealand 1:58:56.1
28. Cory Mayfield, USA 1:59:33.6
29. Arturo Perez Vertti, Mexico 1:59:34.1

Results from last week's FINA 10K Marathon Swimming World Cup in Chunan Qiandaohu Lake, China:

1. Allan Do Carmo (BRA) 1:52:59.57
2. Thomas Lurz (GER) 1:53:00.21
3. Diogo Villarinho (BRA) 1:53:01.77
4. Christian Reichert (GER) 1:53:02.50
5. Andreas Waschburger (GER) 1:53:02.90

Copyright © 2014 by World Open Water Swimming Association

Friday, October 17, 2014

Beauty And The Beast In The Open Water

Courtesy of WOWSA, Huntington Beach, California.

There are few swims around the world that are as tropically beautiful and challenging as El Cruce (see more here).

Rafa Hernández has really made El Cruce special. The annual event held in April attracts nearly 800 competitors from 15 to 70 years to its 9.5 km sea swim from Cancún to Isla Mujeres where the athletes swim over the only Cancún Underwater Museum.

Photos courtesy of race director Rafa Hernández.

Copyright © 2014 by World Open Water Swimming Association

Will Boston Follow Beijing, London, Rio And Tokyo?

Courtesy of WOWSA, Huntington Beach, California.

"So far, so good."

That is the general global consensus of how the world's sporting community and the International Olympic Committee views the two successful Olympic 10K Marathon Swims to date.

After two flat-water loop courses at the 2008 Beijing Olympic Games (Shunyi Olympic Rowing-Canoeing Park) and the 2012 London Olympic Games (Serpentine), the Olympic community is ready for a rough water ocean marathon in Rio de Janeiro's Copacabana Beach and another urban venue in Tokyo Bay's Odaiba Marine Park.

But if the city of Boston gets its wishes, the Massachusetts Open Water Swimming Association, the L Street Brownies or the Charles River Swimming Club or Swim Across America - all Boston-area based open water swimming organizations - may be called into action. There are so many open water swimmers in the area that recruiting volunteers and knowledgeable staff to help organize a 10 km race would be easy.

The politicos, private businessmen and government authorities in Boston are taking a serious look at the City of Boston in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts bidding for 2024 Olympic Games bid.

If Boston received the 2014 Olympic bid, it is fun to imagine where the Olympic 10K Marathon Swim would be held. The venue could be any number of locations where tens of thousands of spectators could see the world's fastest open water swimmers compete in a beautiful course.

Swimming up and down the Charles River, perhaps alongside Harvard University or near MIT, could be cool. Or perhaps the 25 athletes could go mano-a-mano in purposefully turbulent conditions fighting with and against the tides in the Boston Harbor Islands? Or somewhere in Boston Harbor with the skyline of Boston looming large in the background?

I’m cautiously enthused about where we’re heading,” Mayor Walsh said in a Boston Globe interview about the possible Olympic bid. “If we got chosen as an Olympic site? I think it would be a tremendous opportunity for the city of Boston in so many different ways.”

The United States Olympic Committee announced that Boston, Los Angeles, San Francisco, and Washington are on its short list of candidate cities.

For more information on the Olympic 10K Marathon Swim, visit here, here and here.

Upper photo shows the Charles River Swim right outside Harvard University. Lower photo shows Greg O'Connor of the Massachusetts Open Water Swimming Association.

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