DNOWS Header

Image Map

Friday, February 17, 2012

Cook Down, Molokai And Tsugaru Up Next

5 down and 2 to go. Not only does Stephen Redmond have the opportunity to become the first person in history to complete the Oceans Seven, but may also set the standard in completing the daunting 7-swim challenge in a short window.

"This [Oceans Seven] is something that is driving me," said the famed Irish marathon swimmer who has already completed the English Channel (2009), the North Channel (2010), the Strait of Gibraltar (2011), the Catalina Channel (2011) and the Cook Strait (2012).

After his Cook Strait success yesterday, he is preparing for a second assault on the Molokai Channel this month and, if things go well in Hawaii, the final challenge in Japan's Tsugaru Channel in June.

The rock of a man is a humble champion with marathon swimming community rooting for him vicariously through his Spot tracker and Internet reports.

English Channel legend Philip Rush who organized Stephen's swim said, "He did a fantastic job with his Cook Strait conquest. It was a very gusty swim with 3 - 4 hrs under calm conditions and the rest of the day was absolutely rubbish. Stephen is a great guy; we worked well together and got the result."

Stephen was a bit more colorful in his description and perception of his swim. "...it was the hardest, most brutal widow maker I have ever swam. Wellington is such a great city, infectious positivity. The Irish community down here, with Irish from all over Ireland, have been incredible. We had an attempt on Valentines Day which Philip Rush did not allow go ahead. Once again, I have come around the world and met such wonderful people who will be etched into my memory.

Philip decided that Friday looked like the only possible chance. Friday dawned and we felt like I was swimming in Ireland with such support. It was a beautiful day while we steamed over to South Island to swim back. Every detail of the swim is taken care of, even down to properly greasing and sun-blocking. You sense is truly personal to [Philip] to get me across.

The swim started really well [but] I was surprised how cold the water was. My stroke rate stayed at 54 all day and dipped at the end. We screamed across the first four hours. Then once again, the sea gods decided to test me and the whole team.

We were in a storm. Philip admitted that he had never had someone over in such rough seas. We're battered. We did not seem to make much headway. I could have complained, but what was no point? I had come around the world to compete this. This was my only chance. [The storm continued] through the afternoon.

We come to far too fail. With darkness falling, chaos is getting covered by waves. The crew [in the rib] are soaking wet. Philip tells me, 'We have to get over the wind and tide to try and get into shore.' I really want to stop [but] Philip puts that idea out of my head, telling me I will complete the swim because he will not let me into the boat. Too close now [although] it had taken over an hour to swim 400 hundred meters.

After what seems like ages, I mashed into a rock to touch. [There was] no joy, just disbelief and utterly exhausted shoulders gone and in ribbons. I clambered on to rib, not pretty. I laid face down on the ground, dry retching with a body broken. The Cook Strait had as good as killed me. The steam home took hours due to the bad weather. I was left to warm up, but it was too rough so everyone just held on.

This swim was not mine but everyone who have been involved from home to my family, wife and kids. We have achieved it and would like to thank you all for keeping me afloat and being with me through out the swim."

While the Cook Strait severely challenged him with the cold, waves and tidal flows, his next channel between Molokai and Oahu will be another battle for the Irish record holder. Swimming at a steady pace with a steel-trap mind, Stephen is ideally suited to marathon swimming. But the turgid, fast-moving waters of the deep Pacific between Molokai and Tsugaru require an element of speed that presents another challenge for Stephen.

But when Stephen first started on his path towards the Oceans Seven, he was reminded by the omnipresent words of Captain Matthew Webb that "Nothing great is easy." And the Molokai and Tsugaru Channel will not be easy. But what he has the opportunity to achieve will be, truly, great.

Copyright © 2012 by Open Water Source

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