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Friday, August 2, 2013

A Rainy Traversée du lac Memphrémagog Predicted

With rains and thunder showers forecasted at 60% for tomorrow's 34 km Traversée Internationale du lac Memphrémagog in Quebec, Canada, the swimmers and their coaches are preparing for a possibly unprecedented amount of swimming in a FINA Open Water Swimming Grand Prix.

With such a high probability of rain and lightening, the probability of a race cancellation increases.

If lightening strikes during the first 24 km of the Traversée Internationale du lac Memphrémagog, the race is immediately halted...and started over again from the start after a 30-minute window. Imagine if the swimmers have largely completed the 34 km course, scheduled for the early to mid-afternoon when the lightening is most probable? Imagine swimming 30 km against world-class competition and then having to start again from the very beginning? It just might very well happen.

Coaches must prepare for that possibility.

They must prepare additional food and drink, illumination for swimming at night, and most importantly motivating a swimmer who must restart a long event. Swimmers must also prepare for that possibility: additional distance, swimming at night, maintaining a competitive edge over what may be 50 km, not the scheduled 34 km.

"This is why we have lights prepared at the start and finish. Even if we have to be here past midnight for the swimmers to finish. But in the case that the first person has already finished and lightening strikes, then the race is called at that time. The official placing will be determined by the order at the time the race is called, explains Daniel Leduc, the FINA Delegate at the Traversée.

Copyright © 2013 by Open Water Swimming

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