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Sunday, February 9, 2014
Ho High Fives At aQuellé Midmar Mile
As the men swam stroke for stroke, it was the epitome of a mano-a-mano battle.
"The way Chad had been swimming I knew it was going to be tough," said the two-time Olympian Prinsloo. "I was struggling at the start, but then moved next to Chad…I am looking forward to the South African nationals on Tuesday."
It was clear that Prinsloo, the superior pool swimmer, had met his match in Ho who has grown up racing in oceans, seas and lakes around South Africa and the world. While Prinsloo kept looking forward and sighting off the mass of spectators at the start, Ho had only eyes for Prinsloo. Prinsloo would breathe forward 3, 4, 5, 6 times in a row as Ho kept breathing to the right eyeballing his fierce South African rival on every stroke.
Then towards the end, the 2008 Olympian from Durban moved into Prinsloo as the men closed within 25 meters to the finish. Ho knew he just needed a slight edge - any edge. His years on the professional marathon swimming circuit had been a great educator and Ho has been a focused student.
Ho understood angles and used open water triangularization to move Prinsloo ever so slightly out of a straight-line tangent to the finish. But Prinsloo had one physiological advantage that Ho could do nothing about: Prinsloo was the taller competitor and he was able to stand up further from the shore, thus beginning his run quicker than Ho.
For a moment, it appeared that Prinsloo would pull off his third aQuellé Midmar Mile victory and prevent Ho from capturing his fifth consecutive victory.
But Ho charged out of the water like a rhino protective of its offspring. His transition from swimming horizontally to running vertically was seamless and smooth. Three steps onshore and Ho overcame the earlier advantage of Prinsloo. A few steps from the finish, Ho stayed upright and bolted across the finish line like his life depended on it.
"I didn't get off to a great start; there were guys on either side of me, but I moved ahead and swam with Troy," said a thoroughly exhausted Ho. "It was one of the toughest races I ever had."
At the 400-meter hot spot, race director Wayne Riddin called Ho and Prinsloo tied, but ever other subsequent hot spot, Ho just moved slightly ahead to capture the cash prize at the 800m and 1200m marks. Ho used that spatial awareness in the water to ultimately help him put a lateral move on Prinsloo at the finish to win by 0.08 seconds.
Like Ashley Twichell and Keri-Anne Payne's rivalry in the women's division, Ho and Prinsloo will face one another many, many times more before the 2016 Rio Olympics. Stay tuned.
The top 10 men's results:
1. Chad Ho 18:18
2. Troy Prinsloo 18:18
3. Myles Brown 18:43
4. Danie Marais 18:44
5. Christopher James McGlynn 18:45
6. Matthew Mark Meyer 18:47
7. Ayrton Sweeney 19:36
8. Josh Dannhauser 19:55
9. Brendan Levy 19:56
10. Reuben Zane Schoeman 20:03
Outstanding aerial photography of race finish here.
Copyright © 2014 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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2014 Open Water Swimming Almanac
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