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Sunday, February 9, 2014

A World First - The Cold Standard In Hong Kong

50 swimmers will take to the Cold Half in Hong Kong pitting themselves against 3 open water swimming stalwarts: 3-time German national 25 km champion Benjamin Konschak and two former University of California Berkeley Bears: the global-trotting Ned Denison of Sandycove Island [Ireland] and two-time Olympian Hannah Wilson of Hong Kong.

"This year’s weather looks like it will live up to the event’s name as well - cold," forecasts race director Doug Woodring.

"As part of this event is a world-first event called the Cold Standard, which includes a solo swim in the Cold Half, and then a full marathon run in the Standard Chartered Marathon. There are five amazing athletes who will be competing in this event: Chris Molnar, Alex Reinert, Chad Bishop, Henry Wright and Tobias Frenz.

They will be swimming against Konschak, Denison, a member of the International Marathon Swimming Hall of Fame and was nominated for World Open Water Swimming Performance of the Year in 2013 for his nine marathon swims, and two-time NCAA champion Wilson, who will be aiming to break the relay record this year with Kevin Chow. They will face tough competition from the young local women duo of Fiona Chan and Singha Chau in addition to swimmers from Ireland, Spain, Singapore and Malaysia."


"The Cold Standard is the first event in the world where athletes can try to enter the Sub 3 Squared Club in one single weekend. This is where endurance athletes swim a 10 km marathon swim without a wetsuit in under three hours and also run a full 42 km marathon run in under 3 hours. So far, no one has made it, but we think it is only a matter of time before a number of athletes excel in both types of marathons especially on the same weekend," explains creator Steven Munatones.

Chad Bishop, one of the Cold Standard competitors, says, “I love to run and swim. Having an event like this in Hong Kong will show that Hong Kong is not just about being in a big city. There is a lot more ocean and outdoors that can also be explored.”

Henry Wright, a long-time Hong Kong swimmer, says “Training for the Cold Standard has been hard work, but the benefits that I feel I will get out of doing it heavily outweigh the pain I will endure doing the race! It has led me on a journey of self-discovery and brought some realizations to light that will affect my life for the immediate years to come. The swims that Open Water Asia organize are definitely the best open water races that I have taken part in in Asia. Their work in organizing these events is invaluable in Hong Kong, attracting elite sports people to the city and raising an essential environmental awareness that goes hand in hand with their open water races.

Stretching from Stanley to Deep Water Bay, the course runs along Hong Kong’s most stunning views. The race is open to solo swimmers and relays of two people. "Like the Clean Half race every October, the race is both a celebration of the amazing water and geographic assets we have in Hong Kong, combined with extreme sports, and an appreciation of the environment. This is our second Cold Half race, and we have increased the number of participants this year, in cold water, by 150%,” says Woodring. “It is exciting to see Hong Kong being recognized in the global circuit of big, good open water swims, and now with the combined event, the Cold Standard, we are sure to see some of the world’s most amazing marathon-event athletes start to come to this great city of ours.”

The race will start at Stanley Main Beach at 11am, and will finish three to five hours later, depending on the teams, and how the Wall treats them on their way to the finish. The Wall is a body surfing section where an 800m section of rock wall on the Stanley Peninsula where swimmers can virtually ride (railroad) the waves downwind as they swim. The race will finish at Middle Island at the Royal Hong Kong Yacht Club.

Some of the proceeds from the event will be donated to Ocean Recovery Alliance, a Hong Kong-based charity, and their Grate Art project, which is a community art-for-awareness project, reminding people not to dump into drains on the street, as those lead to the ocean which impacts the health and cleanliness of the waters which are one of Hong Kong’s biggest natural assets.

Copyright © 2014 by World Open Water Swimming Association

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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.

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

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

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.

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