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Friday, April 18, 2014
The Uniqueness Of Rob Copeland
The 24-mile Tampa Bay Marathon Swim, the 28.5-mile Manhattan Island Marathon Swim, and the 22.5-mile Around the Island Marathon Swim in Atlantic City, New Jersey are a tough trio of swims on the East Coast of America.
No one has done all three of these swims but the American senior statements of open water swimming, Rob Copeland.
And the 42-year-old did it in a single year (1999). But in his own humble way, the former president of U.S. Masters Swimming and long-time race director downplays his own East Coast Triple Crown.
"This [achievement] is as much due to the nature of these events as it was the timing."
There are a number of swimmers who have done the Manhattan Island Marathon Swim and the Around the Island in Atlantic City. There are swimmers who have done the Manhattan Island Marathon Swim and the Tampa Bay Marathon Swim. But the timing and the professional nature of the Atlantic City race led to Copeland's unique accomplishment. But since the Atlantic City race is no longer held, Copeland's unique achievement may stand the test of time.
Rob Copeland recalls that swim season of 1999, "The Tampa Bay Marathon Swim was my first true marathon race and I made a few rookie mistakes, which made it the most challenging marathon of the season. For starters, I met my kayaker for the first time the night before and we only discussed feeding schedules. We didn’t discuss navigation and positioning, so we wandered around the Bay a bit and she was often 10-20 yards directly ahead, instead of at my 3:00. I’ve sense learned the importance of great swimmer/kayaker communication and planning. Secondly, I didn’t properly lube up and apply sunscreen, so at the end of the race I was bleeding from the neck and has a few spots of bad sunburn on my back and shoulders. And finally I took it out too fast so that by the end I could barely lift my left arm; it took a week to regain full range of motion. Thank the aquatic gods that the weather conditions were otherwise perfect for the swim."
His official time was 10 hours 6 minutes for fifth overall (third male).
"Next up was the Manhattan Island Marathon Swim. This time, I had an experienced kayaker and support boat - Morty Berger does a phenomenal job of lining these folks up - and one of my crew had done the race the previous year, so that helped. I was also well-rested and had learned from my Tampa Bay mistakes, so this race went a lot more smoothly. As you know, there is something unique about current-assisted swims; that and the amazing New York skyline. This was probably my best marathon swim. I felt good the entire race and between the perfect weather and the best tides and current in MIMS history, I was able to break the 7-hour mark, which according to the NYCSwim website is still the third fastest MIMS time, behind Tobie Smith (6:32) and Tammy Van Wisse (6:51). Of course, there are a lot of faster non-MIMS Manhattan swims, including Shelly Taylor-Smith’s 5:45."
His official time was 6 hours 52 minutes for third overall (first male).
"The final of the 3 races was the Atlantic City Marathon. Thanks in part to my long-time friendship with Sid Cassidy and my swims earlier in the year, I got an invitation to compete in the Atlantic City Around-the-Island Marathon Swim. Unlike the professional swimmers in the race, I had to supply my own kayaker, so I didn’t get the advantage of a rowboat draft or the navigational experience of the pros - those rowers did a great job. Nonetheless, I enjoyed the challenge of the changing conditions as we swam from the inlet to the ocean to the bay through the back waters and back to the inlet. As I recall, we had about a 20ºF difference in water temperature form the ocean to some of the back waters. What I remember most about this swim were all the spectators lined up on the Intracoastal Waterway and the stench of the Atlantic City waste treatment facility."
His time was 10 hours 22 minutes.
With that prolific year of 1999 in his wake, the tireless visionary in the sport among the masters swimming community is currently the chairman of the Georgia LMSC Open Water Committee and was the 2011 recipient of the Captain Ransom J. Arthur M.D. Award from U.S. Masters Swimming. Below is a visionary discussion with Swimming World Magazine's Brent Rutemiller in 2008:
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
Swim Across the English Channel...
Who else is looking for a qualified open water swimming coach to help them swim across the English Channel?Chloë McCardel is a 6-time English Channel Swimmer who inspires and instructs. Access featured content by Chloë in this month's issue of the Open Water Swimming Magazine. Published monthly by WOWSA, the Open Water Swimming Magazine is a digital, interactive publication made available exclusively to WOWSA members. See what you've been missing! Become a WOWSA member today!
Open Water Swimming Magazine
Open Water Swimming MagazineThe 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.
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...
The Other Shore
The Other Shore follows world record holder and legendary swimmer Diana Nyad as she comes out of a thirty-year retirement to re-attempt an elusive dream: swimming 103 miles non-stop from Cuba to Florida without the use of a shark cage. Her past and present collide in her obsession with a feat that nobody has ever accomplished. At the edge of The Devil’s Triangle, tropical storms, sharks, venomous jellyfish, and one of the strongest ocean currents in the world, all prove to be life-threatening realities. Timothy Wheeler’s documentary brings Diana Nyad’s extraordinary adventure to life as Diana sets out to prove that will and determination are all you need to make the unimaginable possible.
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.
But the farmers almanac was just one example among many.
There are, of course, many different kinds of almanacs.
In fact, there is even one for open water swimming...
Preview the Open Water Swimming Almanac:
The trends are very clear.
The tide is rising for open water swimming.