Ben Hooper - Swim across Atlantic Ocean

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Comments

  • timsroottimsroot Spring, TXCharter Member

    Haydn said:
    What I am less happy about, is the concept that almost forces a swimmer to develop great comms or face questioning that tends to become more intrusive if comms are lacking in detail.

    My opinion: lack of detail can be okay, but communications need to be consistent. Based on what's been posted here, his Facebook posts are at least somewhat contradictory. That, to me, is the heart of the problem.

    Tracy_Clark
  • david_barradavid_barra NYCharter Member
    edited December 2016

    From the website

    Swimming Attire

    Michael will be using regular Speedos, swim cap and goggles as well as a wetsuit depending on environmental conditions. Michael may also wear an MP3 player and have radio communication with the crew whilst in the water. To reduce the effects of 'salt mouth' he may use a snorkel . In the event that the currents become too strong Michael may use fins for extra speed and propulsion.

    Might be easier to list what sort of assistance will not be permitted.........

    Tracy_Clark

    ...anything worth doing is worth overdoing.

  • IronMikeIronMike BostonCharter Member

    loneswimmer said:
    @IronMike I deleted a post that was virtually devoid of content.

    Understand. I have the FB screenshot of someone asking Ben's team to answer some questions about this "swim" if anyone needs it.

    Just here troubling deaf heaven with my bootless cries...

  • I think Dan said it good. These forums could be a great cheering section. A big swim needs a big cheering section or you risk a jeering section. Comms might well be the factor that provides cheering and a lack of comms can give rise to doubts amongst those that would otherwise be great allies. Communication is key to the success and vibrancy of a great swim and lack of comms can hinder a swim and demotivate a swimmer.

    At the end of the day, we learn what needs to be in place for this kind of swim. I think Ben could probably do with more support and we could be softer with some comments.

    We get more insight with Ben Lacomte and Michael Ventre as they start their swims about the same time as Ben Hooper's swim has concluded.

    Big Ocean swims are here to stay, and that is exciting.

    SallySwimsRobyn8DanSimonelli
  • OhioGalOhioGal Member
    edited December 2016

    @jessrhs - you are not alone, I found myself here for the same reasons... but now I'm reading the book about Donald Crowhurst and following with much delight the SUP Atlantic crossing feat of Chris Bertish... amazing! both who which I wouldn't have known without this forum. I also have a friend (Kevin Brady - 1st to swim the length of the Severn River) that is about to SUP/Swim the Mahaweli in Sri Lanka..
    https://www.facebook.com/kevbradyadventures/?fref=ts

  • david_barradavid_barra NYCharter Member

    Chris Bertish, if successful, should claim the record for first to swim across the Atlantic.

    Suggested rules:
    Chris will use standard speedo, cap and goggles, unless he feels like paddling (for any reason).

    Haters will claim it's an assisted swim.

    KatieBunloneswimmertimsrootevmoViveBeneSylviaDanSimonelliTracy_Clark

    ...anything worth doing is worth overdoing.

  • Actually genuine question. Michael Ventre's website say he is planning to swim with the Gulf stream as it will be warmer. In my limited experience the temperature of the sea in the top few feet depends more on the weather than the deeper ocean currents. Is this a realistic expectation that the warmer ocean currents will make much difference?? Thanks in anticipation.

  • loneswimmerloneswimmer IrelandCharter Member
    edited December 2016

    I rang Chief Productions, the documentary maker.

    Though I didn't request such, (I was just asking the switchboard if there was crew & equipment on the boat) I was passed through to the director of the documentary and we had a short discussion. I did say to him that I was an interested and also completely sceptical observer, (and also that I wasn't talking to him in order to write about it on my blog or anywhere).

    I pointed him to this thread, and the largely sceptical view of the participants here, including my own negative comments.

    I'm not writing this to break any confidences , only to say that the director, (whose name I am even avoiding using) told me that he was impartial in his viewpoint of the swim, and that his view will be the final finished film. And that he would be reaching out to the community for expert opinion in the meantime.

    I felt he was genuine, and I told him that impartial or even questioning media would be a nice change for our sport that we'd welcome.

    evmomalinakaTracy_ClarkJuicyLucyRobyn8ViveBeneSylviaKatieBuncurlycaptainhaddockand 8 others.

    loneswimmer.com

  • malinakamalinaka Seattle, WACharter Member

    Decide for yourself with today's Sea Surface Temperature (SST) Contour Charts. Typical depths are under 1mm.

    Robyn8

    I don't wear a wetsuit; it gives the ocean a sporting chance.

  • gregocgregoc Charter Member

    Robyn8 said:
    Actually genuine question. Michael Ventre's website say he is planning to swim with the Gulf stream as it will be warmer. In my limited experience the temperature of the sea in the top few feet depends more on the weather than the deeper ocean currents. Is this a realistic expectation that the warmer ocean currents will make much difference?? Thanks in anticipation.

    Michael will benefit from Gulf Stream temperatures. There is a marked drop off in surface temperatures north of the GS. If Michael wants to take full advantage of the temperature and flow of the GS, he should start from Cape Hatteras, NC.

    Gulf Stream

    malinakaRobyn8evmoViveBene
  • Robyn8Robyn8 Member
    edited December 2016

    @gregoc @malinaka Thanks for that. Guess the Gulf stream is a definite factor :)

  • loineyloiney EnglandMember
    edited December 2016

    Seems he has jacked it in!

    PRESS RELEASE
    BEN HOOPER ? ATLANTIC SWIMMER
    19:00 UTC 15TH DECEMBER 2016
    08? 08?.1 N 023? 31?.3 W

    During the early hours of this morning, Thursday 15th December 2016, we were subjected to our fifth day of Atlantic storms as a result of which the expedition support vessel the sailing catamaran ?Big Blue? suffered damage to her steering and standing rigging.

    The crew worked through the night to make the vessel safe for all on-board and we were able to assess the extent of the damage and the impact on the expedition at first light.

    By this afternoon, emergency repairs had been made by the crew to enable the vessel to continue sailing safely towards Brazil.

    Unfortunately the damage has been severe enough to warrant a reappraisal of the expedition.

    In the interest of the safety of all souls on-board ?Big Blue? we have decided to postpone the expedition and sail directly to Natal in Brazil by the shortest route for the following reasons:

    1. Further damage to the steering would prevent us from going to the aid of Ben should he become incapacitated in the water as happened when he was attacked by a Portuguese man of war jellyfish
    2. Any additional damage to the standing rigging would impede our ability to control the direction and speed of the vessel to effect a recovery of Ben from the water or any ?man overboard? situation
    3. Continuing the expedition at this time would endanger the continued safety of the crew of ?Big Blue?
    4. Continuing to support the expedition with a vessel carrying known faults would not be in the interest of best maritime practice and professional seamanship
    5. It would not be in keeping with the expedition ethos of safety and education or indeed in the best interest of our sponsors and charities to carry on with little regard to the consequences
      I would add that we are all safe and that ?Big Blue? remains seaworthy and capable of completing crossing of the Atlantic Ocean during the months of December and January; and that the following preventative works were included with other works carried out before departure to ensure the seaworthiness of ?Big Blue?:
      a. The steering was inspected, dismantled, serviced and reassembled in September 2016 and showed no signs of the excessive wear that subsequently contributed to its failure
      b. The steering was serviced and inspected again in November 2016 and again showed no signs of wear or fault
      c. The standing rigging on both masts was inspected and adjusted in August 2016 and further inspected by a qualified rigger in Dakar in November 2016; at those time there was no sign of wear noticeable at the top of the stays or anywhere else that could contribute to failure

    I reiterate that my attempt to become the first person to swim across the Atlantic Ocean, every single Mile remains, but that it has been postponed for the time being.
    My crew have worked tirelessly to make this possible and this decision has not been taken lightly; indeed, the easy option would have been to carry on at all costs ? that would have been foolhardy and unnecessary.

    To quote Theodore Roosevelt ?It is hard to fail, but it is worse never to have tried to succeed?.

    We have NOT failed; we have achieved and gained the knowledge to succeed in the future.

    We thank our families, STBB team, investors and sponsors, charities and followers for their love, prayer and support and this setback will not prevent us completing this record in the future.

    BEN HOOPER
    ATLANTIC OCEAN

    loneswimmer
  • loineyloiney EnglandMember

    Should add this was at the bottom of the press release:
    Distance swum 87 Miles in 33 days
    15 days lost to weather, medical, boat technical

    pavlicovloneswimmer
  • Given all the issues they have had, a wise decision and hoping they make it safe to Brazil

    loneswimmerIronMikecurly
  • Good call. Finally. Hope Chris Bertish survived the storms.

    pavlicovloineySylvia
  • loineyloiney EnglandMember

    pondlife said:
    Good call. Finally. Hope Chris Bertish survived the storms.

    Looking at his tracker he seems to have been moving all night. It also amazes me that, Chris who's on a paddle board, can have a full working tracker. Yet Ben, who is on a full yacht can't!?

    Tracy_ClarksuziedodsSylvia
  • KatieBunKatieBun CornwallSenior Member

    A sensible decision. I wonder if he will actually try it again........ or will he quietly go off and write his book?

    loineyOhioGalTracy_Clark
  • david_barradavid_barra NYCharter Member

    "indeed, the easy option would have been to carry on at all costs"

    What does this mean?
    Serious question.

    DanSimonellimalinakaTracy_Clark

    ...anything worth doing is worth overdoing.

  • loineyloiney EnglandMember
    edited December 2016

    david_barra said:

    "indeed, the easy option would have been to carry on at all costs"

    What does this mean?
    Serious question.

    I would assume death.

  • ViveBeneViveBene Member
    edited December 2016

    I read it as hyperbole: Easier to carry on, continue struggling against all odds, than to admit defeat.

    david_barra said:

    "indeed, the easy option would have been to carry on at all costs"

    What does this mean?
    Serious question.

    loineyDanSimonellicurlyrosemarymintTracy_Clark
  • andissandiss Senior Member

    pondlife said:
    Good call. Finally. Hope Chris Bertish survived the storms.

    Chris Bertish is in a different league all together.

    pondlifeViveBeneDanSimonelliTracy_Clark
  • andissandiss Senior Member

    He also did a proof of concept.

    pondlifeViveBeneAnthonyMcCarleyRobyn8DanSimonelliOhioGalHelbe
  • I know! and it was a kind of satirical comment... :) it was telling that a few weeks ago Chris was mentioned in the same thread as BH on a Facebook post of a friend of mine, saw it and was quite put out! I can see why now...

    andissDanSimonelli
  • New thread for Chris Bertish?

    Chris Bertish is in a different league altogether.

    pavlicovDanSimonelliOhioGalSylvia
  • This expedition had everything going for it...
    A middle aged guy that perhaps was not reconised in the swimming world to everyone set of on a challenge that i believe any marathon swimmer out there would like to experiance a small piece of what Ben Hooper has experianced in that of being miles out from shore in the Atlantic...I for sure would be one...
    Im not or niether do i want to get involved in what the correct protocol to follow was / is tthat was or should of been followed..
    However to meet all the requirements to above posts.....
    RELAY RELAY RELAY RELAY RELAY RELAY RELAY RELAY...
    LET ME KNOW WHEN YOU HAVE A SPONSER..

    loneswimmerRobyn8ssthomasmjstaplesKatieBunDanSimonellisuziedodsthelittlemerwookieSylvia
  • DanSimonelliDanSimonelli San Diego CASenior Member

    andiss said:
    He also did a proof of concept.

    Worth reposting! \m/

    Sylvia
  • RELAY RELAY, i would love to be part of that. If and when it ever happens, I will be there

    Tracy_Clark
  • Relay. Uhmm, 12 person team, $75,000 each might cover it. Cheaper than climbing Everest. Choosing the 12 would be a tough call.

  • curlycurly Issaquah, WAMember

    If nothing else, Ben has planted the seed and for that he should be commended.

  • david_barradavid_barra NYCharter Member

    curly said:
    If nothing else, Ben has planted the seed and for that he should be commended.

    not really

    http://www.danmartinextreme.com/wp/tag/swimming-the-atlantic/

    Tracy_ClarkloneswimmersuziedodscurlyDanSimonelli

    ...anything worth doing is worth overdoing.

  • Tracy_ClarkTracy_Clark Norwich, United Kingdom (from Auckland, New Zealand)Member

    I know there's been some bad weather and (ahem) a jellyfish 'attack' but 87 miles in 33 days...that's 2,6 miles a day!!!

    suziedodsDanSimonelliSylvia
  • ZoeSadlerZoeSadler Charter Member
    edited December 2016

    I'm rather relieved that he did the sensible thing here and aborted this. However, the boat still has to get to dry land and it doesn't sound in particularly good shape to make a transatlantic crossing.

    I wonder if he will try again. I would be surprised given the cost of the expedition.

    DanSimonelliSylviaTracy_ClarkIronMike
  • curlycurly Issaquah, WAMember

    david_barra said:

    curly said:
    If nothing else, Ben has planted the seed and for that he should be commended.

    not really

    http://www.danmartinextreme.com/wp/tag/swimming-the-atlantic/

    I stand corrected. Man, there are a lot of crazy people in this world... :-O

    DanSimonelliTracy_Clark
  • david_barradavid_barra NYCharter Member

    ZoeSadler said:
    I'm rather relieved that he did the sensible thing here and aborted this. However, the boat still has to get to dry land and it doesn't sound in particularly good shape to make a transatlantic crossing.

    I wonder if he will try again. I would be surprised given the cost of the expedition.

    OPM

    ...anything worth doing is worth overdoing.

  • evmoevmo San FranciscoAdmin
    edited December 2016

    A small part of me was hoping he'd keep at it a little while longer - maybe we coulda made a run at the Forum-record 959-comment "110 Miles, 53 Hours" thread.

    DanSimonelliKatieBunsuziedodsrlmTracy_ClarkcurlyIronMikebluemermaid9ssthomasSydneD
  • You swim further than 87 miles at Cork Distance Week....................Seriously though, Ben Hooper got further than both Dan Martin and Ben Fogle. Now it's only to be seen how the next two swims pan out in the Spring, but I bet they both benefit from Ben's attempt.

  • loineyloiney EnglandMember

    curly said:

    david_barra said:

    curly said:
    If nothing else, Ben has planted the seed and for that he should be commended.

    not really

    http://www.danmartinextreme.com/wp/tag/swimming-the-atlantic/

    I stand corrected. Man, there are a lot of crazy people in this world... :-O

    Looking at Dans' blog, he cancelled the whole thing?

  • david_barradavid_barra NYCharter Member

    loiney said:

    curly said:

    david_barra said:

    curly said:
    If nothing else, Ben has planted the seed and for that he should be commended.

    not really

    http://www.danmartinextreme.com/wp/tag/swimming-the-atlantic/

    I stand corrected. Man, there are a lot of crazy people in this world... :-O

    Looking at Dans' blog, he cancelled the whole thing?

    Still planted the seed FWIW

    Tracy_Clarkcurly

    ...anything worth doing is worth overdoing.

  • loneswimmerloneswimmer IrelandCharter Member

    Dan did some awesome training and preparation though.

    IIRC, logistics and boat problems caused the cancellation of the swim just before the start in the US. Others are far more qualified than me to speak about that. For those that followed or knew him at all, some forum members like @phodgeszoho or @mrfinbarr and others, there was never any doubt that he was serious and preparing and sacrificing everything. He had a lot of contact with the Channel community and swimmers in the UK & Ireland and SF at least. He also crewed, volunteered, showed up at swims and did huge training with various people in the community, always driving toward his goal. He was was clear, driven, preparing and open and you would never call him a fantasist if you met him.

    DanSimonellievmoKevinloineyTracy_ClarkKatieBunphodgeszohosuziedodsCharlie

    loneswimmer.com

  • Well thank goodness that is over. Wish they were taking the lesser distance back to Dakar though, with the wind and current. Good luck and fair weather for your swimming challenges If I can help with any please shout out. Pleasure ladies & gentlemen :)

  • Thanks for hosting this discussion people. And please keep it open in case he does land and make some more ridiculous claims and we need experts to uncover them!

    Sylviasuziedods
  • I think he'll quietly disappear into the sunset owing lots of people lots of money.

    pavlicovTracy_ClarkSylviaIronMike
  • Loneswimmer said it all. Great post. It was never the swimming that proved the hard part .

  • Tracy_ClarkTracy_Clark Norwich, United Kingdom (from Auckland, New Zealand)Member

    I have no words...an average of 2 hourly swims twice a day at the beginning of this challenge in calm seas.... http://dailynews.openwaterswimming.com/2016/12/swim-logs-of-ben-hoopers-transatlantic.html?m=1

    SallySwimsloneswimmerSylviasuziedods
  • OhioGalOhioGal Member
    edited December 2016

    This was posted on the STBB FB page by the STBB admin! (not Ben)??

    Swim The Big Blue - I personally invested nearly £38,000 in the expedition, mostly in the boat and the engines. I was assured my investment was safe and the boat was up to the crossing, although I questionned this several times. Ben Hooper seems to have gone very quiet and I wonder if the boat is so damaged, why not sail back to Dakar and not all the way to Brazil. I am no sailor but I lived in Cape Town and know what the Atlantic Ocean can be like.

    loineySylviasuziedods
  • The comments from STBB has just been deleted. You seriously couldn't make this stuff up.

    Fascinated to read the swim logs. I'm not a swimmer but even in my very untrained eye, this man should never have been in the water.
    He seems to have put himself and a lot of other people at considerable danger.

    Tracy_ClarkKatieBuncaptainhaddockSylviasuziedods
  • loneswimmerloneswimmer IrelandCharter Member

    The swim log is fascinating. What is "unexpected" about rough water in the Atlantic? I say this as someone who swims in it.

    Also... 40 to 43 spm! Anyone here under 50 spm?

    Tracy_Clarkandissssthomassuziedods

    loneswimmer.com

  • Tracy_ClarkTracy_Clark Norwich, United Kingdom (from Auckland, New Zealand)Member

    I did.crew an EC solo where the 12 hour 52 minute swimmer had a stroke rate of 42 strokes per minute - pure effortless style....not that these two swimmers have ANYTHING else in common!!!

    loneswimmer said:
    The swim log is fascinating. What is "unexpected" about rough water in the Atlantic? I say this as someone who swims in it.

    Also... 40 to 43 spm! Anyone here under 50 spm?

    Sylviasuziedods
  • I am really confused. This is the spreadsheet where I logged the distances Ben's reports said he had swum on FB. I have now added the distances he reported to WOWSA for comparison. Why on earth would you report different figures. I have assumed the FB posts were statute miles in the first four days. The disparity is greater if they were NM.Screen Shot 12-19-16 at 08.14 AM

    loneswimmerTracy_ClarkDanSimonellisuziedodsKatieBun
  • andissandiss Senior Member

    loneswimmer said:
    The swim log is fascinating. What is "unexpected" about rough water in the Atlantic? I say this as someone who swims in it.

    Must be those "FREAK" waves you hear so much about!! ;)

    Tracy_Clark
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