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Sunday, January 15, 2012

101 Greatest Open Water Swims In History - Part 1, Fresh Water

This week, Open Water Source is presenting a four-part series of the Greatest Open Water Swims In History.

The Greatest Open Water Swims in History is a list of 101 historic open water swims, relays, professional marathon races, match swims or events in all seven continents on Planet Earth (as of 2011) that were unprecedented, demanding, unique and extraordinarily difficult.

The list includes Part 1: Fresh Water Swims, Part 2: Ocean Swims, Part 3: Channel Swims, and Part 4: Marathon Swims.

The swims range a variety of distances from 1 kilometer to thousands of kilometers. The list includes swimmers of various eras and competitive racers and pioneers as well as solo swimmers and relays. Part 1 is below; the swims are listed by date (earlier swims are posted first):

1. James Foster's 1911 swim across Windermere in the Lake District in England. His 11 hour 29 minute crossing was not replicated for 22 years.

2. Ernst Vierkoetter's 1927 victory in the first Canadian National Exhibition race. Over 35,000 spectators witnessed his 21-mile swim across Lake Ontario in 11 hours 45 minutes. The English Channel world record holder of that era won $30,000 for the first swim across Lake Ontario in water that ranged from 6.7-8.9°C (44-48°F).

3. Pedro Candiotti's attempted 300-mile (482K) swim down the Rio Paraná in Argentina in 1935. After 84 hours, Pedro was pulled from the water after covering 281 miles (452K). The solo river marathon was his longest of 20 attempts, none successful that ranged from 1931 to 1943.

4. 16-year-old Marilyn Bell's 1954 crossing of Lake Ontario captured the hearts of Canadians. Her 32-mile (52K) effort took 20 hours 59 minutes in the turbulent 21°C (65°F) waters and resulted in a $10,000 cash prize.

5. Cliff Lumsden's victory in the 1955 Canadian National Exhibition swim. For his 19 hour 48 minute marathon swim of 32 miles that was covered extensively by radio, the 5-time world professional marathon swimming champion earned $84,000.

6. Greta Andersen's victory in the 1958 Traversée internationale du lac St-Jean when she became the first woman to win the prestigious 26K professional marathon swim outright with a 8 hour 17 minute victory.

7. Greta Andersen vs. Ted Erikson in the 1962 50-mile Lake Michigan Swim Challenge. Greta finished in 31 hours over Ted's 35 hour 45 minute swim from Chicago to Kenosha across Lake Michigan. They were both forced to swim an extra 14 miles after placing behind to Dennis Matuch in the original 36-mile course.

8. Abdul Latif Abou Heif vs. Ted Erikson in the 1963 60-mile Lake Michigan Swim Challenge from Chicago to Benton Harbor-St. Joseph. Abou Heif won US$15,000 for his 34 hour 38 minute victory, only days after winning the 15-mile Canadian National Exhibition pro marathon swim. Ted finished in 37 hours 31 minutes and joined his rival in the hospital.

9. Judyth de Nys's overall victory in the 1966 Traversée internationale du lac St-Jean when she beat male superstars as Régent Lacoursière, Herman Willemse, Abdul Latif Abou Heif and Cliff Lumsden in 8 hours 38 minutes.

10. John Kinsella and Sandra Bucha's dual victory in the 1974 24 Heures La Tuque relay in Quebec, Canada where the Hinsdale duo set the world record of 194 laps or almost 65 miles total during the 24-hour race.

11. Des Renford vs. Kevin Murphy in Loch Ness, Scotland, the third-and-final race of their match race series. The 38.4K was attempted only a few days after their mano-a-mano race across the English Channel. Des lasted 6 hours 37 minutes while Kevin was pulled out after 9 hours in the 5°C (41°F) water in the epic 1977 series.

12. Christine Cossette became the first person to complete a double-crossing of lac St-Jean. With her 1984 swim, she issued in a new era at la Traversée internationale du lac St-Jean. During her 64K two-way crossing, she negative-split her 18 hours 27 minutes swim (9:29 in the first leg and 8:59 in the second leg).

13. Claudio Plit vs. Philip Rush in the 1986 double-crossing of lac St-Jean. Claudio out-dueled Philip in the 64K cold-water swim in Quebec, Canada that saw the rivals swim stroke-for-stroke for nearly 17 hours. Claudio won in 17:45:29 over Philip's 17:46:29.

14. Vicki Keith's unprecedented two-way crossing of Lake Ontario in 1987. The 95K (59 mile) non-stop double-crossing took the Canadian marathon swimming heroine 56 hours 10 minutes. Only 3 weeks later, Vicki completed the first one-way crossing butterfly in 23 hours 33 minutes.

15. Claudio Plit vs. Philip Rush in the 1987 double-crossing of lac St-Jean. Claudio edged Philip in another one of the four mano-a-mano duels in the cold-water lac St-Jean, winning in 17:46:41 over Philip's 17:51:08.

16. Lynne Cox's 1988 swim across Lake Baikal in Russia. Her 7-mile course from one cape to another took the aquatic adventurer 4 hours 19 minutes in the world's most voluminous body of fresh water.

17. Vicki Keith's 1989 butterfly crossing of Lake Ontario. The renowned butterflyer took 31 hours to double-arm her way across 51.5K (32 miles) of the turbulent Lake Ontario.

18. Lynne Cox's 1992 swim across Lake Titicaca from Bolivia to Peru. Swimming at 3,812 meters (12,507 feet), she swam 10 miles from the resort village of Copacabana in Bolivia to the village of Chimbo in Peru, in 3 hours 48 minutes in 13-14°C (56-58°F) water.

19. Lewis Pugh's swim across the geographic North Pole in 2007. His unprecedented 1K swim across an open patch of sea, in minus -1.7 °C water, took 18 minutes 50 seconds to complete as he called attention to global warming and incorporated many scientific, technological and safety breakthroughs.

20. Natalie du Toit's fourth-place finish at the 2008 World Open Water Swimming Championships. The only amputee to have qualified for an Olympic final, the South African icon proved became one of the sport's greatest ambassadors and heroines with her Olympic 10K Marathon Swim performance.

21. Larisa Ilchenko's gold medal performance in the Olympic 10K Marathon Swim at the 2008 Beijing Olympics. Latching onto the British pack leaders, the Russian open water swimming superstar waited until the last 50 meters to pull out an Olympic victory with her trademark Ilchenko Move.

22. Maarten van der Weijden's gold medal performance in the Olympic 10K Marathon Swim at the 2008 Beijing Olympics. As the only leukemia survivor to win an Olympic gold medal, his comeback, training, preparation, race strategy and finishing kick are legendary.

23. The Camlough Team of 220 open water swimmers collectively swam non-stop for 232 hours and 52 minutes (over 9 nights and 10 days) to traverse a total of 685.5K (426.5 miles) in northern Ireland in 2009.

24. Lewis Pugh's 22 minute 51 second swim in 2010 where he swam 1K at 5,300 meters (17,388 feet) in 2°C water in Lake Pumori, a glacial lake on Mount Everest, to highlight the melting of the glaciers in the Himalayas and the impact the reduced water supply will have on world peace as part of the Clinton Global Initiative.

25. Speedo Ice Swim in Nuwedam in Fraserburg, Northern Cape, South Africa where 16 cold-water swimmers braved the 5°C water in "absoluut malligheid" (absolute madness) in the inaugural International Ice Swimming Association event. The event also included a 600-meter qualification swim for those who will to enter the Ice Swim in the future.

26. The Windermere 12-way Warriors (Liane Llewellyn, Thomas Noblett, Keith Bartolo, Michelle Lefton, Michelle Sharples and Dee Llewellyn) swam 12 lengths of the biggest lake in England in 2011. The 126-mile non-stop journey took 75 hour 32 minute in unseasonably cold water and strong winds.

Photo above shows Ernst Vierkoetter and Cliff Lumsden.

Readers can submit their favorite historical swims and suggestions to Open Water Source here (headcoach@openwatersource.com. Copyright © 2012 by World Open Water Swimming Association

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Thank you very much for your interest in the world of open water swimming.

The Staff of the World Open Water Swimming Association

2014 Global Open Water Swimming Conference

Learn more...
Courtesy of WOWSA, Huntington Beach, California.

CLICK HERE TO REGISTER FOR THE CONFERENCE

The Global Open Water Swimming Conference is a conference on the sport of open water swimming, marathon swimming and swimming during triathlons and multi-sport endurance events.

The conference which has been attended by enthusiasts and luminaries from 6 continents, is devoted to providing information about the latest trends, race tactics, training techniques, equipment, psychological preparation, race organization and safety practices used in the sports of open water swimming, marathon swimming and triathlons.

The conference's mission is to provide opportunities to listen and meet many of the world's most foremost experts in open water swimming, and to meet and discuss the sport among swimmers, coaches, administrators, event organizers, sponsors, vendors, officials, escort pilots, and volunteers from kayakers to safety personnel.

Dozens of presentations at the 2014 Conference at the Mount Stuart House cover numerous aspects of the vast and growing world of open water swimming where attendees can learn and share the latest trends, race tactics, training modalities, swimming techniques, equipment, race organization, logistics, operations, and safety practices for open water swimming as a solo swimmer, competitive athlete, fitness swimmer, masters swimmer, triathlete, multi-sport athlete, administrator, race promoter, sponsor or referee.

The conference was first held in Long Beach, California as part of the 2010 USA Swimming National Open Water Swimming Championships. It has since been held on the Queen Mary in California, at Columbia University and the United Nations in New York City, and in Cork, Ireland. This year in September, it comes to another iconic location, the Mount Stuart House on the Isle of Bute in Scotland.

"The Global Open Water Swimming Conference was started due to the desire and need for athletes, coaches, referees, administrators, race directors, promoters and sponsors from around the world to share, collect and learn information about the growing sports of open water swimming, marathon swimming and triathlons," said founder Steven Munatones. "Other swimming conferences usually offering nothing on open water swimming or perhaps a speech or two, but we thought open water swimming deserves its own global conference. It is great that the community shares its information via the online social network, but there is nothing like meeting other open water swimming enthusiasts face-to-face and talking about the sport from morning to night."

Speakers at the conference include English Channel swimmers, ice swimmers, record holders, renowned coaches, world champions, professional marathon swimmers, renowned race directors, officials and administrators from the Africa, Americas, Asia, Europe and Oceania.

"Because the audience is passionate and educated about the sport and its finest practitioners, the Global Open Water Swimming Conference is also the location of the induction ceremonies for the International Marathon Swimming Hall of Fame and the annual WOWSA Awards that recognize the World Open Water Swimming Man of the Year, the World Open Water Swimming Woman of the Year, the World Open Water Swimming Performance of the Year, and the World Open Water Swimming Offering of the Year. Special Lifetime Achievement Awards are also occasionally presented to individuals who have made significant contributions to the sport over their career."

The 2014 Global Open Water Swimming Conference Programme

Wednesday, September 17th
Leave Glasgow to commence 2-day tour of Scotland [closest international airport is Glasgow]

Thursday, September 18th
Stay Mainland, North of Scotland

Friday, September 19th
14:00 - Swim Loch Lomond
17:00 - Head to Isle of Bute
19:30 - Scottish Banquet
21:30 - Dinner Dance

Saturday, September 20th
09:00 - Registration & Coffee
10:00 - Speeches
12:20 - Lunch and WOWSA Awards
13:40 – Speeches
15:40 - Round Table
19:00 - International Marathon Swimming Hall of Fame Dinner & Induction Ceremony

Sunday, September 21st
09:00 - Registration & Coffee
10:00 - Speeches
14:30 - Swim in St Ninian's Bay on the Isle of Bute

The luminaries of the open water swimming world who will be honored in Scotland will include:

* Sandra Bucha (U.S.A.), International Swimming Hall of Fame Honor Open Water Swimmer and International Marathon Swimming Hall of Fame Honour Swimmer
* Jon Erikson (U.S.A.), International Swimming Hall of Fame Honor Open Water Swimmer
* Claudio Plit (Argentina), International Swimming Hall of Fame Honor Open Water Swimmer
* Judith van Berkel-de Njis (Netherlands), International Swimming Hall of Fame Honor Open Water Swimmer
* David Yudovin (U.S.A.), International Swimming Hall of Fame Honor Open Water Swimmer
* Mercedes Gleitze (Great Britain), International Swimming Hall of Fame Honor Open Water Swimmer
* George Young (Canada), International Swimming Hall of Fame Honor Open Water Swimmer
* Dale Petranech (U.S.A.), International Swimming Hall of Fame Honor Open Water Contributor
* Melissa Cunningham (Australia), 2013 Irving Davids-Captain Roger Wheeler Memorial Award winner
* Vojislav Mijić (Serbia), International Marathon Swimming Hall of Fame Honour Swimmer
* James Anderson (U.S.A.), International Marathon Swimming Hall of Fame Honour Administrator
* Dr. Jane Katz (U.S.A.), International Marathon Swimming Hall of Fame Honour Administrator
* Indonesian Swimming Federation, , International Marathon Swimming Hall of Fame Honour Organisation
* Elizabeth Fry (U.S.A.), International Marathon Swimming Hall of Fame Honour Swimmer
* Pádraig Mallon (Ireland), the 2013 World Open Water Swimming Man of the Year
* Olga Kozydub (Russia), the 2013 World Open Water Swimming Woman of the Year
* Bering Strait Swim (international team), the 2013 World Open Water Swimming Performance of the Year
* International Ice Swimming Association (Ram Barkai, founder, South Africa), the 2013 World Open Water Swimming Offering of the Year

For additional articles on the 2014 Global Open Water Swimming Conference, visit:

* Olga Kozydub To Be Honored In Scotland
* Pádraig Mallon To Be Honored In Mount Stuart Castle
* Mount Stuart House, Splendid Setting For Swimming
* Colleen Blair To Kick-off Global Open Water Swimming Conference
* The Man Who Swims Better Than He Walks
* Joining In The Sea Goddess At The Hall Of Fame
* Mercedes Gleitze To Be Honored In Scotland
* The Incredible Career Of Merceded Gleitze
* Jon Erikson To Be Honoured In Florida
* The Incredible Career Of Mercedes Gleitze
* St Ninian's Bay To Host International Swim Conference

Copyright © 2014 by World Open Water Swimming Association

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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.

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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.
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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:
https://www.worldopenwaterswimmingassociation.com/preview-open-water-swimming-almanac


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

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