CALL FOR NOMINATIONS - 2017 Solo Swim of the Year

evmoevmo San FranciscoAdmin
edited November 2017 in Admin Communications

Please submit your nominations for Solo Swim of the Year, by commenting on this thread. Anonymous/private nominations are accepted via the contact form, but this is generally discouraged in favor of public nominations..

This award is intended to honor the most outstanding solo marathon swim in 2017 -- one by a female, and one by a male. Criteria: solo, nonstop, unassisted rules & conduct, observed & documented.

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 Solo Swim of the Year (winners indicated in bold):

2012 - female

  • Annaleise Carr (Canada). Lake Ontario crossing.
  • Chloe McCardel (Australia). English Channel two-way.
  • Tina Neill (USA). San Clemente Island to California mainland.

2012 - male

  • Trent Grimsey (Australia). New English Channel record.
  • Craig Lenning (USA). Tsugaru Strait crossing.
  • Bill Shipp (USA). Lake Memphremagog crossing.

2013 - female

  • Michelle Macy (USA). North Channel record.
  • Sarah Thomas (USA). Two-way Lake Memphremagog.
  • Wendy Trehiou (Jersey). Two-way English Channel.

2013 - male

  • Fergal Somerville (Ireland). Oldest to complete North Channel.
  • Ned Denison (Ireland / USA). False Bay crossing.
  • Sylvain Estadieu (France). English Channel butterfly.

2014 - female

  • Chloё McCardel - 124.4km Bahamas swim, new world distance record
  • Charlotte Samuels - 20-hour Catalina Channel swim
  • Susan Simmons - two-way crossing of Lake Cowichan, British Columbia, Canada (68 km)

2014 - male

  • Bob Fernald - English Channel
  • Craig Lenning - first Farallon Islands to mainland swim since 1967
  • Otto Thaning - oldest to swim English Channel

2015 - female

  • Chloё McCardel - three-way English Channel
  • Jaimie Monahan - Lake Geneva
  • Kimberly Chambers - first woman to swim from Farallon Islands to Golden Gate Bridge
  • Marcy MacDonald - Loch Ness
  • Margarita "Tita" Llorens - first crossing of Mallorca Channel, Spain

2015 - male

  • Andrew Malinak - Strait of Juan de Fuca
  • Bill Shipp - Catalina Channel
  • David Barra - Cayuga Lake
  • Jason Betley - two-way Catalina Channel

2016 - female

  • Pat Gallant-Charette (Maine, USA) - oldest person to swim the North Channel
  • Sally Minty-Gravett MBE (Jersey) - oldest person to swim two-way English Channel
  • Carol Schumacher Hayden (California, USA) - oldest person to swim the Catalina Channel
  • Sarah Thomas (Colorado, USA) - 80-mile (129 km) swim in Lake Powell

2016 - male

  • Howard James (UK) - earliest English Channel swim
  • Christian Jongeneel (ES) - double Manhattan circumnavigation
  • Mike Tyson (USA) - Lake Issyk Kul, Kyrgyzstan

The MSF Global Marathon Swimming Awards, now in their sixth year, are the only peer-nominated, peer-voted awards for the sport of marathon swimming.



  • LynnkubLynnkub Charter Mem​ber

    This has to be Sarah Thomas for her epic 3-day Lake Champlain swim!

    evmolakesprayKarl_KingeryJaimieCopelj26KatieBunJustSwimmjstaplesrosemarymintSydneDand 27 others.
  • ChloeChloe New Zealand Member
    edited November 2017

    Dan Abel for his circumnavigation of Rarotonga. 34km, cross currents, wildlife (whales, turtles, jelliefish, reef shark), trade winds. 3rd time ever completed, 1st time swum since 1985.
    Raised money for Cook Islands Autism.

  • evmoevmo San FranciscoAdmin
    edited November 2017

    A private nomination for Dennis T. Seiler-Holm, for completing the earliest (in the year) known Beltquerung swim, and first by a Dane. This is a minimum 19km route in the Baltic Sea between Germany and Denmark. 11 hours, 44 minutes on July 6, 2017.

    Here's a video:

  • ssthomasssthomas DenverCharter Member

    I don't know the specifics, but I think Caroline Block's North Channel swim certainly deserves recognition. I know she didn't complete the double, but if memory serves me well, she made it st least halfway back, which made her swim the longest someone has even attempted to swim the Irish Sea. It was a gutsy swim that I think deserves the be recognized- she paved the way for others to start thinking big in the North Channel (or even prep for her to go back and try again!).

    evmoKatieBunslknightcurlyrlmpavlicovbatchesJSwimthelittlemerwookieMaryStellaand 14 others.
  • I would like to nominate Catherine Breed for her record-setting performance across the length of Lake Tahoe as Solo Swim of the Year. Catherine swam what is considered the “long” course. 21.3 miles from Camp Richardson, California to Incline, Nevada (Hyatt Beach) in a record time of 8 hours 56 minutes 17 seconds on September 8 & 9, 2017.

    The previous overall fastest record was held by Dave Kenyon in 1986 with a time of 9 hours and 26 minutes. Dave raced and set many long distance swim records in and around San Francisco Bay in the 1980’s and finished just short of qualifying for the Olympics in 1976 (I think he finished fourth in the mile at Olympic Trials). Catherine is a relative newbie to open water swimming (about 2 years) having come from a pool background as well, qualifying for her first Olympic Trials at 15 years old. She was on the USA National Team in 2011 and eighth in the mile at NCAA’s but wanted a change from the box with the black line on the bottom after she graduated from college. Catherine decided to try swimming in the San Francisco Bay and found she enjoyed long distance open water swimming and the characters that partake in our sport. She decided to try a ‘longish’ swim (Tahoe) in the water in preparation for even longer swims this upcoming year (2018). During the swim, Lake Tahoe water temp was 67 degrees (f). Air temp was 46 degrees (f) at the swim start, it dipped to a low of 39 (f) before dawn, and hovered in the low 40s overnight. The altitude of Lake Tahoe is 6225 feet, adding an extra challenge to the swim.

    Her crew included Tim Smith and John Grundstead, who both did an outstanding job of splitting the kayak duties. Andy Woolridge was the course mathematician and co-pilot to Tom Linthicum (a.k.a. Reptile) who knows the Tahoe course in his sleep. Scott Tapley was the official observer and I (Suzanne Heim-Bowen) acted as Crew Chief.

    I was so impressed with the discipline and focus that Catherine demonstrated during her swim. There was no fiddling with her goggles, back talk, or whining. Feed breaks were short (10 seconds on average) and just amazing focus. The swim was not without a little drama. We knew she was trying to get as close to the record as possible all the while recognizing that it ultimately is in Mother Nature’s hands. Once Catherine passed the half way point and IF conditions cooperated she would be close to the record if she held pace…and she was holding pace. In fact she negative split her swim! The last 90 minutes, when she was told that it was possible to go under 9 hours, she held a six beat kick and looked like she was sprinting---even skipping one of her feeds in order to get under that magic 9 hour mark. I wish people could have the seen the wonder woman effort she put forth that final 90 minutes it was so impressive. Her finish…she walked out of the water, red faced and breathing hard and collapsed in exhaustion and joy. Her Mother was there on the beach with lots of hugs and some nutrition once Catherine could catch her breath.

    Well done Catherine…and I am hopeful there will be more epic swims in her future.

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