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Friday, June 21, 2013

Leahi Camacho, Making Molokai Memorable

Leahi Camacho of Hawaii will attempt to become the youngest person ever to successfully cross the Molokai Channel. This is her story and these are her reasons:

Daily News of Open Water Swimming: When did you start thinking about crossing the Molokai Channel?
Leahi Camacho: The channel itself I didn't know much about. But I do remember in 2009 watching the news with my dad, specifically because "the girl I went to zones with" was going to be on, Mackenzie Miller. I remember telling my dad that I wanted to to that. Even though I had no idea how far it was. After that it kinda died down until a few months ago when I was late-night web surfing and one link led to the next and I was looking at all the channels on the Hawaii swimming web page. I printed out the map and the rules, wrote "maybe one day?" below the picture and put it on my dad's desk, next thing I know I was outside of the pool telling my coach this was something I really wanted to do.

Daily News of Open Water Swimming: What does it mean to a local swimmer from the Big Island to cross the Molokai Channel?
Leahi Camacho: I've grown up watching Ironman, volunteering at different extreme sporting events and have always said I want to do something like that, just as most people do. But soon after the desire bows out because the hype is up. Now that I'm doing something that is pretty dang daunting to me and following through. Also that very few people even know about is so completely unreal to me. Every time I go out to practice people ask "How far today?", I tell them and then realize, "Holy heck, 26 miles is a long way". To be the youngest from the Big Island doesn't really register until people ask if I am. Age is merely a number, regardless of age it is still going to be the toughest physical and mental challenge I have ever faced and that anyone will face. I can't wait to touch down at Sandy's [Beach on Oahu], I know tears are going to be a factor, just because it will seem like a dream, it's a personal mountain for me to climb and when I get to the top I can't wait to take in the view.

Daily News of Open Water Swimming: What kind of training do you do to attempt the Molokai Channel?
Leahi Camacho: I train with Steve Borowski, who I have been with since I was 10-ish, I was a chunky little kid who had to be rescued from her first ocean swim. Now though me and two of my teammates Madison and Cara train doubles 3 times a week usually adding up to 9,000-10,000 yards and then the other two days just single workouts that are around 5,000-6,000 yards. I generally do strength training with cords, nothing too hard core, mostly a preventative measure to be sure my shoulders don't blow out. Then I sneak in 2 long ocean swims a week ranging from 8-15 miles.

Daily News of Open Water Swimming: Who will be on your escort crew?
Leahi Camacho: I might have the best escort crew around, my coach, who I was afraid was not going to make it. But I now cherish hearing his whistle during my breath just as a little reassurance. The assistant coach, Wendy, who I have gotten super close with over these last few years, especially in 7th grade when she was my math teacher and come to find out we both swam. My dad, who had raised me and has always been my support team in himself. I just really wanna make him proud.

Possibly another swimmer who may swim the night portion with me, Jonah Hu. We have been friends for a long time and he's pretty comfortable at night. Then of course my wondrous kayakers Steve Haumschild and Jeff Kozlovich, the dynamic duo of the [Hawaiian] channels. Of course, Captain Matt Buckman and possibly a doctor, Michael Traub, a family friend and also my support system
.

Daily News of Open Water Swimming: What worries you about the crossing?
Leahi Camacho: My biggest worry are the cookiecutter sharks. Hearing the horror stories about some guy getting a chunk taken out of his chest is kind of unsettling. I've become aware that I will get stung, it will be deep, and I will be sore. Cookiecutters are my nightmare come true. Yeah I would definitely be scared if a tiger shark popped up. Who wouldn't? But as long as I don't go poking around at it, I hope it'll leave me alone. Secondly is getting hurt or stung to where I can't finish, that would be heart-breaking, not just to me but I feel like my crew and the team at home would be a little upset.

Daily News of Open Water Swimming: What do your parents think about your attempt?
Leahi Camacho: I told my mom at dinner when she came to visit me, she kinda looked at me and was like "okay...why?" I explained to her and I don't think she took me seriously until I called her after my first long swim in training. My dad, just wrote back on the note "we got the boat, go hoops" (which has been my name from him for I have no idea how long). I feel like it was a lot if disbelief among them, until we paid the deposit for the boat and my training was in full swing.

Daily News of Open Water Swimming: What other open water swims have you completed?
Leahi Camacho: Marathon swimming is rather new to me. I mean I've heard of it, but I have never competed in insane distances. The furthest before I started training was the Ali'i Challenge, back when 6 miles was insane to me. But I have swum the 1.2 course right in my own back yard hundreds of times. Last summer I was lucky enough to capture the Triple Crown title for the ocean swim series on the Big Island. I feel like our team has always been really strong in the ocean, pool distance; certain people can run us down, but plop them in the ocean and it's a whole new ball game with the umpire Mother Nature calling the shots.

Ka'iwi is going to be quite a journey but I really want to be an inspiration to someone, to show people that they just gotta get up, they can move mountains and inspire someone else to be great. I feel like there is no greater burden than great potential. We gotta go out there and fight for it.

The young lady from the Big Island of Hawaii is certainly wise beyond her years.

Copyright © 2013 by Open Water Swimming

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The Staff of the World Open Water Swimming Association

2014 Global Open Water Swimming Conference

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

2014 Global Open Water Swimming Conference Agenda


Friday, 19 September

5:30

PM


Welcome Reception at Mount Stuart House, Isle of Bute, Scotland

Documentary films shown throughout the reception:

Blue Journey-Amerika Samoa – Stronger Together: The Waterman’s Way
(film by Bruckner Chase)

Dancing With The Water, Crossing of Lake Pontchartrain
(film by Wayne Ewing about Matthew Moseley's Lake Pontchartrain crossing)

Bering Strait Swim Chukotka - Alaska
(film by Admiral Konstantin Sidenko about the relay between Russia and Alaska)

The Clean Swim – Hong Kong to Macau
(film about Simon Holiday's Pearl River Delta crossing)


Saturday, 20 September

9:00

AM


Registration and Coffee at Mount Stuart House, Isle of Bute, Scotland

10:00

AM


Keynote Speech:
Colleen Blair (Scotland) on The History of Scottish Swimming

10:20

AM


Christopher Guesdon (Australia) on Multidimensional Roles In The Sport

10:30

AM


Colin Hill (England) on Recent Explosion in UK Open Water

10:50

AM


Shelley Taylor-Smith (Australia) on The Feminine Code of Achievement - How a Lady from Down Under Revolutionized Professional Marathon Swimming

11:10

AM


Simon Murie (England) on Open Water Swimming Holidays: How A New Sector Was Created Within The Travel Industry

11:30

AM


Swimming The Oceans Seven
A round table discussion moderated by:
Kevin Murphy (England), with Stephen Redmond (Ireland), Anna-Carin Nordin (Sweden),
Darren Miller (USA), Adam Walker (England), Kimberley Chambers (New Zealand)

12:30

PM


Coffee and Break

1:00

PM


World Open Water Swimming Awards Luncheon:
with co-hosts Shelley Taylor-Smith (Australia) and Steven Munatones (USA)

Pádraig Mallon (Ireland), 2013 World Open Water Swimming Man of the Year

Olga Kozydub (Russia), 2013 World Open Water Swimming Woman of the Year

Bering Strait Swim, 2013 World Open Water Swimming Performance of the Year

Honoring: Vladimir Chegorin, Maria Chizhova, Elena Guseva, Ram Barkai, Jack Bright, Oksana Veklich, Aleksandr Jakovlevs, Matías Ola, Henri Kaarma, Toomas Haggi, Nuala Moore, Anne Marie Ward, Toks Viviers, Melissa O’Reilly, Ryan Stramrood, Cristian Vergara, Craig Lenning, Rafal Ziobro, Andrew Chin, Jackie Cobell, James Pittar, Paolo Chiarino, Mariia Yrjö-Koskinen, Ivan Papulshenko, Zdenek Tlamicha, Zhou Hanming, Oleg Adamov, Andrei Agarkov, Alekseev Semen, Tatiana Alexandrova, Roman Belan, Elena Semenova, Alexander Brylin, Afanasii Diackovskii, Vladimir Nefatov, Evgenii Dokuchaev, Oleg Docuckaev, Roman Efimov, Dmitrii Filitovich, Olga Filitovich, Victor Godlevskiy, Olga Golubeva, Alexei Golubkin, Alexander Golubkin, Alexandr Iurkov, Oleg Ivanov, Pavel Kabakov, Eduard Khodakovskiy, Aleksandr Komarov, Aleksandr Kuliapin, Andrey Kuzmin, Irina Lamkina, Vladimir Litvinov, Andrey Mikhalev, Victor Moskvin, Nikolay Petshak, Sergey Popov, Vladimir Poshivailov, Grigorii Prokopchuk, Dmitrii Zalka, Natalia Seraya, Viacheslav Shaposhnikov, Olga Sokolova, Andrei Sychev, Alexei Tabakov, and Nataliia Usachaeva [represented by Admiral Konstantin Sidenko and Nuala Moore]


2:30

PM


Alexey Salmin Pavlovich (Russia) and Dmitry Dragozhilov (Russia)
on the 2016 Winter Swimming World Championships [film]

2:50

PM


Sally Minty-Gravett (Jersey) on Motivating Swimmers

3:10

PM


Dmitry Blokhin (Russia) and Aleksei Veller (Russia)
on the First World Ice Swimming Championships [film]

3:30

PM


Matthew Moseley (USA)’s Dancing With The Water, Crossing of Lake Pontchartrain [film]

3:50

PM


Simon Holliday (England) and Doug Woodring (Hong Kong)’s The Clean Swim – Hong Kong to Macau 2014 [film]

5:00

PM


International Swimming Hall of Fame (ISHOF)
and International Marathon Swimming Hall of Fame (IMSHOF)

IMSHOF Induction Ceremonies and Dinner
with co-hosts Shelley Taylor-Smith (Australia) and Steven Munatones (USA).

Recognition of International Swimming Hall of Fame honorees:

  • Elizabeth Fry (USA), IMSHOF Honour Swimmer

  • Vojislav Mijić (Serbia), IMSHOF Honour Swimmer

  • James Anderson (USA), IMSHOF Honour Administrator

  • Dr. Jane Katz (USA), IMSHOF Honour Administrator

  • Indonesian Swimming Federation Open Water Committee (Indonesia), IMSHOF Honour Organisation

  • Melissa Cunningham (Australia), Irving Davids – Captain Roger Wheeler Award by the International Swimming Hall of Fame and IMSHOF Honour Swimmer

  • Sandra Bucha (USA), ISHOF Honor Open Water Swimmer and IMSHOF Honour Swimmer

  • Jon Erikson (USA), ISHOF Honor Open Water Swimmer and IMSHOF Honour Swimmer [represented by Sandra Bucha]

6:30

PM


International Swimming Hall of Fame (ISHOF) Introduction Video.
Welcome speech by host Shelley Taylor-Smith (Australia)

6:45

PM


Dinner

7:30

PM


International Swimming Hall of Fame (ISHOF)
Induction Ceremonies and Dinner with host Shelley Taylor-Smith (Australia)

Recognition of International Swimming Hall of Fame honorees:

  • Mercedes Gleitze (England)
    ISHOF Honor Pioneer Swimmer and IMSHOF Honour Swimmer
    [represented by daughter Doloranda Pember]

  • Dale Petranech (USA)
    ISHOF Honor Contributer and IMSHOF Honour Administrator

  • Claudio Plit (Argentina)
    ISHOF Honor Open Water Swimmer and IMSHOF Honour Swimmer
    [represented by Shelley Taylor-Smith]

  • Judith van Berkel-de Nijs (Netherlands)
    ISHOF Honor Open Water Swimmer and IMSHOF Honour Swimmer
    [represented by Niek Kloots]

  • George Young (Canada)
    ISHOF Honor Pioneer Swimmer and IMSHOF Honour Swimmer
    [represented by the Catalina Channel Swimming Federation]

  • David Yudovin (USA)
    ISHOF Honor Open Water Swimmer and IMSHOF Honour Swimmer


Sunday, 21 September

9:00

AM


Registration and coffee at Mount Stuart House, Isle of Bute, Scotland

10:00

AM


Nuala Moore (Ireland) on The Mindset of 1000m at 0ºC

10:20

AM


Admiral Konstantin Sidenko (Russia)’s Bering Strait Swim Chukotka - Alaska in 2013 [film]

10:40

AM


Ned Denison (Ireland) on Swimming The World

11:00

AM


Bruckner Chase (USA)’s Blue Journey-Amerika Samoa
Stronger Together: The Waterman’s Way
[film]

11:20

AM


Rok Kerin (Slovenia) on Lifestyle Benefits From Open Water Swimming

12:00

PM


Survey distribution and group photo-taking

2:00

PM


Swim at Stravvana Bay, Isle of Bute






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."


Copyright © 2014 by World Open Water Swimming Association

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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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2014 Open Water Swimming Almanac



An Almanac for Open Water Swimming

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