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Sunday, September 9, 2018

The People Behind The Feeding Sticks

Courtesy of Tim Hochradel on Tateyama Hojo Coast in Chiba, Japan.

The focus of most media attention about open water swimming is on the athletes themselves, whether the swimmer is young or old, slow or fast, amateur or Olympic.

But the people guiding on the escort boats, paddling on kayaks, and passing food and hydration by feeding sticks on feeding stations are invaluable to the swimmer's successes.

Tim Hochradel is one such invaluable person. The Director of Operations for the Arizona State University swim teams works closely with Bob Bowman, the renowned coach of Michael Phelps, and the American swimmers on the USA Swimming national open water swimming teams.

He has served as the USA Swimming Team Manager at the 2017 FINA World Championships in Budapest, Hungary and 2018 Pan Pacific Swimming Championships in Tokyo, Japan.

At the 2017 FINA World Championships, he helped Ashley Twichell finish 1st, Haley Anderson finish 5th, David Heron finish 10th and Andrew Gemmell finish 17th in the 5 km; Haley Anderson finish 6th, Ashley Twichell finish 10th, Jordan Wilimovsky finish 1st and Brendan Casey finish 9th in the 10 km in the 10 km; the USA team finish 2nd in the 5 km team relay, and Chip Peterson finish 5th, Becca Mann finish 7th and Cathryn Salladin finish 10th in the 25 km race.

At the 2018 Pan Pacific Swimming Championships, he helped Haley Anderson finish 1st, Ashley Twichell finish 5th, Hannah Moore finish 5th, Erica Sullivan finish 8th, Chase Travis 9th, Jordan Wilimovsky finish 1st, David Heron finish 6th, Taylor Abbott 9th, James Brinegar 12th, and Zane Grothe finish 14th in the 10 km race.

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