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Tuesday, December 31, 2013
Touché To Tomi
The 42-year-old came out of retirement and surged back from 6 - six! - shoulder surgeries to win the 32 km lake classic over men more than 10 years his junior. "I just swim easy today and take it easy the rest of the week before Magog (the 34 km Traversée Internationale du lac Memphrémagog).
"I usually train 10 times a week in the water and then 3 dryland sessions per week, but today I am sore and tired."
And what 42-year-old would not be? Stefanovski raced, surged, and sprinted to a victory in the longest continuous running professional marathon race in the world: it was surprising to everyone but the star from Macedonia.
For his races around the world, his positive outlook and friendly nature, Stefanovski was nominated for the 2013 World Open Water Swimming Man of the Year.
His nomination reads, "Tomi Stefanovski was the most unlikely of victors in the most prestigious and toughest professional race in the world, la Traversée internationale du lac St-Jean. A survivor of six surgeries, three on each shoulder, the 42-year-old masters swimming dynamo is a role model who is admittedly past his prime. But the love of the sport pushes him forward. The former water polo player has put in mega-mileage with over a decade on the professional marathon swimming circuit.
But he remained confident in himself and never failed to be competitive. A stalwart to finish, but not a threat to win la Traversée, Stefanvoski proved everyone wrong. For his unlikely victory on the downside of his career, for his participation in professional marathon races on 3 continents, for his continuous joy of the sport while raising two daughters, Tomi Stefanovski is a worthy nominee for the 2013 World Open Water Swimming Man of the Year."
The 42-year-old former Macedonian water polo player won his first FINA event after 9 years of trying and a lifetime of aquatic performances.
His road to victory in the Traversée internationale du lac St-Jean was a very long time in coming. The former water polo player competed in his first FINA Open Water Swimming Grand Prix race in 1997. "I did it because the race was in my home country of Macedonia," he recalled. "That is why I competed. I was a water polo player then. But I liked it and did the pro circuit between 1997 and 2002. In 2001, I did the Traversée and tried to come back in 2002. But between then and now, I have had 3 shoulder surgeries on my left and 3 shoulder surgeries on my right arm. I tried coming back again in 2008 when I placed 7th without much training. But after that Traversée, I experienced 3 days of cramps."
He did an English Channel crossing in 2009 in 7 hours 42 minutes and then tried the Traversée again in 2010. "My second daughter was born in 2011, so I took off again. But I started swimming again in 2012.
Now in 2013, I win my first FINA Grand Prix race."
Stefanovski was prepared for this race like never before since 1997. "The Traversée is my favorite race. It is a cold water race, so I am better. And here in Roberval, it is most important for the general FINA rankings. You receive the most points here. When Eduardo Stochino took off, like others did, I had to make my move once. Edoardo made many moves, 3 or 4 times. Everyone was making a move. I also let Joanes [Hedel of France] go, but I also pushed hard to catch him. Because if Joanes goes, he is strong and difficult to catch. I do not want to swim more [than I have to]. But during the race, I felt comfortable in the pack and I am always good at the finish."
His colleagues similarly nominated for the 2013 World Open Water Swimming Man of the Year include:
1. Alexander Brylin, Ice Swimmer from Siberia (Russia)
2. Damián Blaum, Around The World Marathoner (Argentina)
3. Darren Miller, Achieving the Oceans Seven (U.S.A.)
4. Doug Woodring, Energetic Environmentalism (Hong Kong)
5. Glen Christiansen, Recovering from Trauma (Sweden)
6. Jim McConica, Ageless Wonder (U.S.A.)
7. Jose Diaz, Horizontes Sin Fronteras (Spain)
8. Mally Richards, 60 Years In The Making (South Africa)
9. Oussama Mellouli, Olympic Ambassador (Tunisia)
10. Pádraig Mallon, Extraordinaire Event Director & Swimmer (Ireland)
11. Rafael Gutiérrez Mesa, Getting Things Strait in Gibraltar (Spain)
12. Thomas Lurz, World Champion (Germany)
13. Tomi Stefanovski, Mastering the Traversee (Macedonia)
14. Vojislav Mijić, Tirelessly Resilient Race Director (Serbia)
15. Wayne Riddin, Midmar Mile Miracle (South Africa)
The previous recipients of the World Open Water Swimming Man of the Year include:
* 2008 World Open Water Swimming Man of the Year - Randy Nutt (U.S.A.)
* 2009 World Open Water Swimming Man of the Year - Petar Stoychev (Bulgaria)
* 2010 World Open Water Swimming Man of the Year - Marcos Díaz (Dominican Republic)
* 2011 World Open Water Swimming Man of the Year - Jamie Patrick (U.S.A.)
* 2012 World Open Water Swimming Man of the Year - Stephen Redmond (Ireland) shown above
Online voting takes place here.
The results of the 59th edition of the Traversée internationale du lac St-Jean in Roberval, Québec, Canada:
1. Tomi Stefanovski (MKD) 6:51:18.4
2. Eduardo Stochino (ITA) 6:51:36.5
3. Damian Blaum (ARG) 6:51:45.7
4. Xavier Desharnais (CAN) 6:51:54.6
5. Evgenij Pop Acev (MKD) 6:52:53.6
6. Joanes hedel (FRA) 6:55:45.3
7. Hugo Alberto Ribeiro (POR) 6:58:07.4
8. Tsvetan Yordanov (BUL) 7:03:49.8
9. Aimeson King (CAN) 7:10:25.6
10. Benjamin Konschak (GER) 7:28:09.3
11. Simon Pistor (GER) 7:28:28.9
12. Samir Barel (BRA) 7:35:51.8
13. Tiago Sato (BRA) 8:36:16.4
Alexander Studzinski (GER) DNF
Fernando Ciaramella (ARG)
Copyright © 2013 by World Open Water Swimming Association
2014 Global Open Water Swimming Conference
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
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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...
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2014 Open Water Swimming Almanac
An Almanac for Open Water SwimmingAn 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.
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Preview the Open Water Swimming Almanac:
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The tide is rising for open water swimming.