CALL FOR NOMINATIONS - 2015 Yudovin Award for Most Adventurous Swim

evmoevmo SydneyAdmin
edited December 2015 in Admin Communications

It's that time again! We're pleased to announce the Fourth Annual Global Marathon Swimming Awards, the only peer-nominated, peer-voted awards for the sport of marathon swimming.

Please submit your nominations for the Yudovin Award for Most Adventurous Swim, by commenting on this thread. To submit a private nomination, please contact us.

The Yudovin Award was conceived in 2014 and named after renowned marathon swimmer David Yudovin, with his personal blessing. As many of you know, David tragically passed away earlier this year, so this award has taken on new meaning.

The Yudovin Award recognizes the single most adventurous solo swim of the year. This award is intended to hono(u)r the spirit of adventure, as opposed to pure athleticism. So, the most interesting or unusual swim, as opposed to the longest or fastest swim.

A single swim may be nominated for both the Yudovin Award and Solo Swim of the Year - however, this swim may be a finalist in only one of the two categories.

In your nominations, please explain why the individual deserves the nomination.

Finalists will be selected on the basis of community support, as measured by "Likes." So, if you agree with a nomination and want to "second" it, click the "Like" button on that nomination. Nominations will remain open for approximately three weeks.

Previous years' finalists for the Yudovin Award (winners indicated in bold):


  • Patti Bauernfeind
  • Katie Benoit
  • Peter Hayden



  • Wendy Trehiou

    First to complete the mammoth St Malo (France) to Jersey 24 hours and 7 minutes.

    She's been nominated in other categories however in terms of an open water adventure, anyone who knows the NW French coastline and how the weather and seas can whip up at a moments notice, plus of course the famously strong currents will appreciate that apart from being a fantastic swim, a 'first' it was also truly an adventure.

  • emkhowleyemkhowley Boston, MACharter Member
    edited December 2015

    I nominate @jendut Jen Dutton for her unprecedented A-B-C swim of Keuka Lake in upstate New York. She started in Pen Yan at the most northeasterly point of the Y-shaped lake at just past 8am on Sunday, August 9. She swam down to the bottom of the lake in Hammondsport, and landed about 7 pm that night. She took a couple minutes on the shore to refuel and re-grease, then got back in and swam up to Branchport, landing at just about 6am. The sum total of the swim was about 34 miles, and she did it with a crew of two people (and her 2 teenagers helped for a few hours) and zero fanfare. There was no media, no accolades, no hoopla. She just swam and swam because she wanted to and because no one had done the entire lake like that before. It was a pretty amazing swim, and an adventure to be sure. Here's a rough estimation of her course. It's a big ole lake and it was a great swim that gets at the heart of what it means to be a marathon swimmer: I want to because I'm not sure that I can, but I'd like to find out.

    Screen Shot 2015-12-01 at 15.42.56


    Stop me if you've heard this one...
    A grasshopper walks into a bar...

  • FilFil Derby, VTCharter Member

    I would like to nominate this year's Loch Ness Swims collectively as some of the more adventurous swims of 2015. They were undertaken this year not by one swimmer, but by four. 22 fresh water miles generally in the low to mid 50s most of the summer, Loch Ness is a daunting, intimidating, and mysterious presence. Only 10 to 15 swimmers are known to have swum its entire length. I don’t know how many have tried, but turned back. It truly is a monster of a swim.

    This past summer four swimmers from the United States undertook to swim Loch Ness and did so successfully: Marcy MacDonald of Connecticut, Sarah Thomas of Colorado, Craig Lenning also of Colorado, and Elaine Kornbau Howley of Massachusetts. The last three of these did so as part of an expedition, In Search of Nessie, helping to establish a triple crown of Lake Monster Swims that include, Lake Tahoe, Lake Memphremagog, and Loch Ness.

    Notwithstanding their significant experience and success as some of the top ultra marathon open water swimmers in the world, each of these swimmers overcame significant fears and doubts as they took on this swim. Each were challenged by the unrelenting cold of this loch. After the “expeditionary” swim was completed, each of the three swimmers fessed up to the same pre-swim demon running through their minds, that the other two would succeed but that they would not.

    Loch Ness has been somewhat dormant on the open water circuit, its reputation as a place of unavoidable hypothermia has caused most swimmers to forego even the thought of taking on this monster. The fearless swimming of these four Americans, coupled with the growth of colder and colder marathon swimming, has brought the Loch Ness Swim into the prominence it deserves.

    I have no idea whether it is appropriate to nominate the swim itself as the adventure swim of the year or to nominate these four swimmers for their fearless undertaking. But, I think it is worthy of mention.

  • evmoevmo SydneyAdmin

    I nominate Dave Van Mouwerik's unprecedented swim across Estero Bay in Central California for the Yudovin Award. While this swim was not particularly long in distance (14.4 miles / 23.2 km), it was definitely long on adventure, for a number of reasons.

    When I say this swim was unprecedented, I don't just mean that nobody has ever done a marathon swim across the width of the bay before. What I mean is: People just don't really swim in the ocean here. Surfing, yes. But swimming? Too cold, too windy, and let's be frank: one of the most notoriously sharky patches of water in California.

    This happened about a week after Dave's swim:

    Dave completed the swim in 8 hours, 18 minutes, in water averaging 60F (15.5C). I observed and documented the swim on behalf of MSF. Check out the local news coverage HERE and HERE, and the Forum thread HERE.

    Dave made available some additional info about the swim here:

    I believe Dave Yudovin would have appreciated this swim, as he lived just up the coast in Cambria. Though I don't believe he did much ocean swimming.... because people just don't swim in the ocean around there :-)

    ScottZornigLynnkub[Deleted User]DanSimonelli
  • DanSimonelliDanSimonelli San Diego CASenior Member
    edited December 2015

    I think Dave VM's 'whale of a picture' is called for!
    Can you post it?

  • DanSimonelliDanSimonelli San Diego CASenior Member

    Dave VM and his whale!


This discussion has been closed.