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Thursday, June 7, 2018

World's Greatest Escape Artist Swims From Angel Island

Courtesy of WOWSA, San Francisco Bay, California.

Today, Pacific Open Water Swim Co. organized a new 10 km prison island swim in San Francisco Bay.

Frenchman Jacques Tuset completed the swim in 1 hour 58 minutes 30 seconds in the 14°C waters between Angel Island to Kirby Cove on the California mainland after passing under the Golden Gate Bridge.

Tuset explains, "Angel Island is the second largest island in San Francisco Bay. It has been nicknamed the Ellis Island of the West because it was the first contact on American soil for the thousands of immigrants. In the 19th century, the U.S. army requisitioned land and laid out facilities. The entire area has been dubbed Fort McDowell and served as a quarantine station, a transit area for more than 1 million Chinese immigrants, and a prison camp for Japanese and German prisoners of war.

Angel Island shares common traits with the neighboring island of Alcatraz, its insularity deterred escape attempts while providing an ideal isolation for quarantine cases."


Tuset, an Honor Swimmer in the International Marathon Swimming Hall of Fame, has completed the most number of prison island swims in history including the following:

Prison Island Swims to mainland where swimming is the only means of escape:
1. 3 km Île d'Oléron to Tremblade, France in 1999
2. 2.4 km Alcatraz Island to San Francisco Bay, California, USA in 2000 in 26 minutes 30 seconds
3. 5 km Le Château d’If to Marseille, France in 2001 in 1 hour 12 minutes 19 seconds
4. 17 km Fort Boyard to La Rochelle, France in 2009 in 3 hours 20 minutes
5. 7.5 km Robben Island to Cape Town, South Africa in 2014 in 2 hours 2 minutes 57 seconds
6. 25 km Cabrera Island to Majorque, Spain in 2014 in 7 hours 30 minutes
7. 1.8 km Spike Island to Cobh, Ireland in 2014
8. 25 km Île du Levant to Hyères, France in 2014 in 6 hours 50 minutes
9. 1 km Sainte-Marguerite to Cannes, France in 2014
10. 19.7 km Rottnest Island from Cottesloe, Australia in 2015 in 6 hours 52 minutes 47 seconds
11. 21 km Tabarca Island to Alicante, Spain in 2015 in 6 hours 53 minutes 14 seconds
12. 2 km Île de Brescou to Cap d'Agde, France in 2015
13. 2 km Château du Taureau to Carantec, France in 2015
14. 5.5 km Île de Gorée to Gorée, Senegal in 2015 in 1 hour 37 minutes 31 seconds
15. 13.4 km St Joseph's Island to Kourou, French Guiana in 2016 in 3 hours 45 minutes
16. 400m Isla de San Simón to Cesantes, Spain in 2016
17. 1.5 km Isola delle Femmine between Sicily and Italy in 2016
18. 750m Drakes Island to Plymouth, Great Britain in 2016
19. 3 km Spitbank Fort to Gosport, Great Britain in 2016
20. 2 km Île Mogador to Essaouira, Morocco in 2016
21. 12 km Île du large St Marcouf to Quinéville, France in 2017 in 3 hours 20 minutes
22. 1.5 km Spinalonga to Plaka, Crête in 2017
23. 21 km Asinara Island to Porto Torres, Sardinia, Italy in 2017 in 6 hours 19 minutes
24. 800m Bourtzi Fort to Nauplie, Greece in 2017
25. 4 km Makronissos, Greece in 2018 in 1 hour 15 minutes 31 seconds
26. 10 km Angel Island, San Francisco Bay, California, USA in 2018 in 1 hour 58 minutes 30 seconds

Prison Island Swims to mainland that can be reached via a bridge or walking at low tide:
26. 50m Langholmen, Stockholm, Sweden in 2014
27. 200m Fort National to Saint-Malo, France in 2016
28. 50m Île de la Cité to Paris, France in 2017
29. 2 km Île Tatihou to St Vaast la Hougue, France in 2017

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