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Thursday, September 6, 2012

Penny Dean To Talk Where She Used To Train

Courtesy of WOWSA, Huntington Beach, California.

Dr. Penny Dean who shattered the English Channel record by over an hour in 1978 and who set the still-standing record in the Catalina Channel will speak at the 2012 Global Open Water Swimming Conference on the Queen Mary in Long Beach, California on September 22nd.

She will participate in the open water swimming safety panel and other sessions on training and preparation for everything from competitive events to channel challenges.

And Dr. Dean knows the Queen Mary well, at least from the outside.

Decades ago, she trained alongside the Queen Mary, going back and forth and back and forth from bow to stern. Visitors to the Queen Mary could peer over the side and watch the dynamo train hour after hour ripping off miles after miles at a 80+ stroke per minute pace. Sometimes, we'd go for a morning (pool) workout and then head to the beach for another workout, and then back again for a third workout.

Passion and commitment, combined with talent and an unusual capacity for training, got her in a position to go on a 3-year tear through the English and Catalina Channels. In 1976, she set the Catalina Channel record in 7 hours 15 minutes - a 36-year-old record that has yet to be broken. The next year, she replicated and broke Greta Andersen's double-crossing record set in the Catalina Channel in 20 hours 3 minutes. The next year, she was ready for her final assault on the English Channel. She shattered the old record in 1978, completing her historic 3-year stretch with a 7 hour 40 minute crossing of the English Channel.

Dean was deservedly inducted in the International Marathon Swimming Hall of Fame in 1980 and in the International Swimming Hall of Fame in 1996 as a result of her record-setting channel swims, her post-channel success on the world professional marathon swimming circuit, and the legacy she left behind as an able administrator and successful coach with USA Swimming.

She coached several world champions as well as a number of marathon swimmers of all ages, abilities and background.

Her wisdom and perspectives will be a joy to hear at the Global Open Water Swimming Conference where she will share the stage with other marathon swimming luminaries, including Greta Andersen.

Copyright © 2012 by World Open Water Swimming Association

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