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Who's Who of Open Water Swimming

From Captain Matthew Webb who first crossed the English Channel in 1875 to Lynne Cox who was the first person to swim in Antarctica, open water swimming has always attracted heroic and risk-taking adventurers.  Many, but not all, of these adventurers have been inducted in the International Marathon Swimming Hall of Fame (IMSHOF).

This 10-part historical series will cover open water luminaries ranging from Keo Nakama, who first crossed the Molokai Channel in Hawaii, to modern-day heroes like Shelley Taylor-Smith.

First, a brief introduction of the IMSHOF may be useful to understanding how these great open water athletes were selected.

In 1961, the IMSHOF was founded by the Professional Marathon Swimmers Association to recognize the accomplished marathon swimmers.  The International Swimming Hall of Fame (ISHOF) in Ft. Lauderdale, Florida provides similar recognition to the pool swimmers, water polo players, synchronized swimmers, divers, coaches and administrators. Under the direction of Buck Dawson, the ISHOF founder and executive director, the IMSHOF began its affiliation with the ISHOF.

Currently, the IMSHOF is governed and administered by Dale Petranech, its chairman and chief historian, and an international 24-member selection committee.  The selection committee includes the following individuals:

  1. Shelley Taylor-Smith of Australia, the dominant female professional marathon swimmer from the mid-1980’s to the mid-1990’s and current Secretary General of the FINA Technical Open Water Swimming Committee.
  2. Sid Cassidy, current chairman of the FINA Technical Open Water Swimming Committee and former pro marathon swimmer.
  3. Tim Johnson of Massachusetts, author of The History of Open Water Swimming and the world’s foremost authority on tidal influences on open water swimmers.
  4. Paul Asmuth of California, the dominant professional marathon swimmer of the 1980’s.
  5. Michael Read of England, 1960 Olympic Games swimmer and former holder of the title King of the Channel for his 33 successful swims of the English Channel (to date).
  6. Conrad Wennerberg of Illinois, Chairman Emeritus of the IMSHOF and author of Winds, Waves and Sunburn: A Brief History of Marathon Swimming, one of the most authoritative books written on marathon swimming.
  7. Steven Munatones of California, creator of www.10Kswim.com, multi-time USA Swimming open water coach and former professional marathon swimmer.
  8. Alison Streeter of the U.K., Queen of the Channel for her 43 successful swims of the English Channel.
  9. Kevin Murphy of the U.K., current King of the Channel for his 34 successful swims of the English Channel.          
  10. Pierre Otis of Canada, former Chairman of the Traversée internationale du lac St-Jean.
  11. Dale Petranech of New Jersey, chairman of the IMSHOF and former chairman of the FINA Open Water Swimming Commission.
  12. Carol Sing of California, oldest female swimmer to cross the English Channel.
  13. Montserrat Tresserras of Spain, first Spaniard to swim the Straits of Gibraltar and English Channel and first female swimmer to swim the English Channel both ways (1961).
  14. Irene van der Laan of the Netherlands, former English Channel double-crossing record holder and long-time professional marathon swimmer.
  15. Lynn Blouin of Canada, race director of the Traversée internationale du Lac Memphrémagag and Vice President of the IMSHOF.
  16. Richard Broer of the Netherlands, creator of Netherlands Open Water web (www.noww.nl) and open water swimming promoter.
  17. David Clark of California, a swimmer of, and coach, escort and observer for swimmers of the Catalina Channel and English Channel.
  18. Buck Dawson, the founder and Director Emeritus of ISHOF and Camp Director of  Camp Ak-O-Mak and long-time supporter of open water swimming.
  19. Bob Duenkel of Florida, the Curator and Assistant CEO of the ISHOF and former USA Swimming national open water team coach.
  20. Silvia Dalotto of Argentina, a certified FINA Open Water official, advocate of South American open water swimmers and former top professional marathon swimmer.
  21. James Doty of Massachusetts, a former professional marathon swimmer and founder of the New England Marathon Swimming Association.
  22. Maurice Ferguson of the U.K., former president of the British Long Distance Swimming Association.
  23. Dr. Marcella MacDonald of Connecticut, successfully completed 6 English Channel crossing including a double-crossing.
  24. Dr. Osama Ahmed Momtaz of Egypt, recipient of the National Award of Excellency in Sport from the Egyptian Government, Director of the Egyptian Swimming Federation and former professional marathon swimmer.

The IMSOF not only attempts to recognize the efforts of the most accomplished swimmers who participate in competitive events, but also recognizes the efforts of solo swims, where the swimmer battles the elements and unchartered waters.

The objectives of the IMSHOF are:

  1. To nominate and select outstanding marathon swimmers and officials who make the sport possible. To date over 160 individuals and organizations have been honored. Anyone may nominate a candidate for consideration by submitting an application.
  1. To establish and maintain a biography on the swimmers selected as IMSHOF honorees.
  1. To accept nominations and award The Irving Davids/Captain Roger Wheeler Memorial Award established in 1970 by the New England Marathon Swimming Association on behalf of the ISHOF which honors the contribution of individuals who make major contributions to marathon swimming.
  1. To nominate, select and award a IMSHOF Certificate of Merit to swimmers and organizations who make major contributions to marathon swimming.  This program was started in 1994 to recognize those who may not (yet) meet the standards for honoree status.  To date, over 110 individuals and organizations have been honored.  Anyone may nominate a candidate for consideration by submitting an application.
  1. To accept official records for the ISHOF Henning Library and memorabilia for the ISHOF Museum.
  1. To serve as resource and provide expertise to the ISHOF committees on matters related to open water swimming and marathon swimming.
  2. To record marathon swims that are observed, but are not conducted under the jurisdiction of an official or sanctioning body. The role is to record, for historical purposes, the conditions and methods used by and reported by the swimmer. A certificate of the recording can be obtained upon request from the IMSHOF Secretary.

Stay tuned – for this is only part 1 of a 10-part series on the world’s greatest open water swimmers or marathon swimming endeavors.

 

International Marathon Swimming Hall of Fame Honorees

*    Member of International Swimming Hall of Fame
**  Recipient of International Swimming Hall of Fame Gold Medallion

1963                                                         
SIR BILLY BUTLIN, GBR                 
*GERTRUDE EDERLE , USA            
MARTY SINN, USA                        
*MATHEW WEBB, GBR                       
HERMAN WILLEMSE, NED
GEORGE YOUNG, CAN

1964
ANTONIO ABERTONDO, ARG
*GRETA ANDERSON, DEN
TOM BLOWER, GBR
JUDITH VAN BERKEL-DE NIJS, NED
* ABDULLA LATIF ABOU HEIF, EGY
WILLIAM WRIGLEY, USA

1965    
PEDRO CANDIOTTI, ARG              
 BROJEN DAS BAN                                     
*GERALD FORSBERG, GBR
*ANNETTE KELLERMAN, AUS/USA                         
GENERAL SABRY, EGY
JOHN SIGMUND, USA

1966
*FLORENCE CHADWICK, USA
GEORGE DUTHIE, CAN
HASSAN ABDEL RHEIM, EGY
MIHIR SEN, IND
GUILIO TRAVAGLIO, ITA
CHARLES ZIBLEMAN

1967                                                         
MARILYN BELL, CAN
CAVILL FAMILY, AUS                                               
JOSE CORTINAS, ARG                                 
*HORACIO INGLESIAS, ARG                 
KEO NAKAMA, USA
LOTTIE SCHOEMMEL, USA

1968
BARRY DAVENPORT
OTTO KAMMERICH, GER
LINDA MC GILL, AUS
TOM PARK, USA
HENRY SULLIVAN, USA
JABERZ WOLFFE, GBR

1969                                                         
MERCEDES GLEITZE, GBR              
CARLOS LARRIERA, ARG                  
CLIFF LUMSDEN, CAN                                
DAVID SMITH, USA                                  
BERT THOMAS, USA
PATTY THOMPSON

1970
ROBERT DOWLING, USA
HELGE JENSEN, DEN
JOHAN SCHANS, NED
BRENDA SHERRATT
MONTSERRAT TRESSERRAS, ESP
*JOHNNY WEISSMULLER, USA

1971                                                         
ELAINE GRAY, GBR                                    
BAPTISTA PEREIRA, POR                                  
SHADIA EL RAGEB                      
ENRICO TIRABOSCHI, ITA                   
JAMES TOOMEY, USA
JASON ZIRGANOS  GRE

1973
LILIAN HARRISON
EVA MORRISON, USA            
IMRE SZENASI, HUN
BARRY WATSON, GBR
FENG YAO-HSIEN, CHI
MAJOR GENERAL AHMED ZORKANI, EGY

1974-1976
NO
HONOREES SELECTED

1977                                                
DENNIS MATUCH, USA
KEVIN MURPHY, GBR
CONRAD WENNERBERG, USA

1978
ALFREDO CAMARERO, ARG                     
TED ERICKSON, USA
JERRY KERSCHNER, USA
*JOHN KINSELLA, USA
*CYNTHIA NICHOLAS, CAN
DIANA NYAD, USA
MICHEAL READ, GBR
DES RENFORD, AUS
ERNEST VIERKOETTER, GER

1979                                                            
ERSIN AYDIN, TUR                                      
NASSER EL SHAZLY,  UAE                  
JOE GROSSMAN, USA                       
ALAWI MAKKI, UAE                                     
MARVIN NELSON, USA
STEVE WOZNIAK, USA

1980
*PENNY LEE DEAN, USA
PAOLE DONNAGGIO          
ISHAK HELMY, EGY
TOM HETZEL, USA
JOHN SLATER GBR

1981
*JAMES "DOC" COUNSILMAN, USA
JON ERICKSON, USA                       
CLAUDIO PLIT, ARG                             
GUS RYDER, CAN
RALPH WILLARD, USA

1982
PAUL ASMUTH, USA
LORD BYRON, GBR
CHRISTINE COSSETTE, CAN        
*LYNN COX, USA
STELLA TAYLOR, USA

1983                                                            
TINA BISCHOFF, USA                          
TOM BURGESS, GBR
*BENJAMIN FRANKLIN, USA
DAVID MORGAN, GBR
AUDREY AND RAY SCOTT, GBR

1984
ASHBY "BRUD" HARPER, USA
TED KEENAN, IRE              
MAY LOONEY
MARTHA NORELIUS, USA
NORMAN ROSS, USA

1985                                                    
MAGDA MOLNAR, HUN             
**JIM MORAN, USA
JULIE RIDGE, USA
PHILIP RUSH, NZL
ALISON STREETER, GBR
JAN VAN SCHEYNDAL
IRENE VAN DER LAAN, NED

1986
TOM WATCH, GBR

1987
TANARATH SHENOY, IND

1988
LYNDON DUNSBEE, GBR
MARC NEWMAN, GBR
BRIDGET YOUNG, GBR

1989                            
VALERIE PARSON, GBR                                     
SHELLY TAYLOR-SMITH, AUS 
JOHN YORK, USA

1991                                                        
JAMES KEGLEY, USA
ANNEMIE LANDMETERS, BEL

1992
DAVID ALLEVA, USA
LELLO BARBUTO, ITA
DR CHRIS STOCKDALE, GBR

1993                                                       
*BUCK DAWSON, USA
MONIQUE WILDSCHUT, NED

1994
CAROLE HUNT, GBR
SARAH HUNT, GBR
FEDERATION INTERNATIONALE DE
NATATION AMATEUR (FINA)

1995                                                    
JACQUES AMYOT, CAN                        
DIEGO DEGANO, ARG
DALE PETRANECH, USA

1996
THE CHANNEL SWIMMING
ASSOCIATION GBR
CHAD HUNDEBY, USA
GREG STREPPLE, CAN

1997                                                    
DR. HARRY H. BRIGGS, USA                
MARIAN CASSIDY KEEN, USA
ROGER PARSONS, GBR

1998
ANNE CHAGNAULD, FRA
ATILA MOLNAR, HUN
VELJKO ROGOSIC, YUG
TREVOR SMITH, GBR

1999                                                    
KAREN BURTON REEDER, USA           
BILLY WALLACE, IRL
DAVID YUDOVIN, USA

2000
MARGARET PARKS WISNISKI, CAN
CAROL SING, USA

2001                                                    
ALIBILO COUTO, BRA                         
GUSTAVO ORIOZBALA, ARG
**JAMES WHELAN, USA

2002
BRITISH LONG DISTANCE SWIMMING ASSOCIATION, GBR
STEVEN MUNATONES, USA
WILLY VAN RYSAL, GBR

2003
REG BRICKELL (SENIOR), GBR
PEGGY BUCHSE, GER                                    
MAURICE FERGUSON, GBR
ROSEMARY GEORGE, GBR                       
VICKI KEITH, CAN
NORMAN TRUSTY, GBR

2004
ROBERT COSSETTE, CAN               
IGOR DE SOUZA, BRA                         
CHRISTOF WANDRATSCH, GER 
LYNN BLOUIN, CAN                                    
DAVID STEVENS CLARK, USA                
FRANCIS (FRANK) RICHARDS, GBR                  
LEONARD HUTCHINSON, GBR                       
RIGHT HON. WILLIAM J. LONG OB, GBR
MICHAEL ORAM, GBR

2005
SID CASSIDY, USA 
DANIEL EULOGIO CARPIO MASSIOTI “CARPAYO”, PER
SILVIA DALOTTO, ARG
PETER JURZYNSKI, USA
MARCELLA A MACDONALD PDM, USA 
SUSIE MARONEY AUS
SALLY ANNE MINTY-GRAVETT GBR
JOE SMITH  GBR
FREDA STREETER GBR
DUNCAN TAYLOR GBR
CARL WALKER GBR PILOT

2006
JULIE BRADSHAW, GBR
NORA TOLEDANO CADENA, MEX
TIM JOHNSON, USA
GILLES POTVIN, CAN
MERVYN SHARP, GBR

2007
EDITH VAN DYKE, NED
STEPHANE LECAT, FRA
OSAMA AHMED MOMTAZ, EGY
DAVID WHYTE, GBR
VICKO SOLJAN, CRO

 

International Marathon Swimming Hall of Fame Merit Winners

In 1994 the Selection Committee of the International Marathon Swimming Hall of Fame decided to create the International Marathon Swimming Hall of Fame   Certificate of Merit to recognize and honor swimmers and major contributors to Open Water/Marathon Swimming.

Because a swimmer must be retired from active participation before being considered for inclusion in the IMSHOF, the swimmer may have to wait years before they can be recognized. The committee can award a Certificate of Merit to any swimmer winning an international marathon event or who has medaled in the FINA 25 Kilometer World Championships.

They will also consider presenting the award for major solo efforts, except when
The swim was attempted as part of another sanctioning body having authority in the swim, for example the English Channel or Around Manhattan Island. The committee felt it is the sanctioning bodies’ responsibility to honor the swims under their control. The Selection committee will consider issuing a Certificate of Merit if that body so requests.

The committee will also consider Certificates of Merit for any individual or group making a major contribution to the sport.

No specific criterion is used in the selection process and each case is considered on an individual basis.

Only one certificate is issued to an individual or group, and they can be considered at a later date for inclusion in the IMSHOF as an honoree, with the exception of an anniversary certificate as was the case in the Lac St Jean 50th Annual Race.

 

Certificate of Merit International Marathon Swimming Hall of Fame
Individual Swimmer

Recipient Country Year Recipient Country Year
Alexei Akatiev
Russia
1994
Kathrin Lammers
Germany
2003
Ester Balza
Hungary
1999
Laura La Piani
Italy
2005
David Bates
Australia
1994
Stephane Lecat
France
1996
Ton Brouwer
Netherlands
2007
Susie Maroney
Australia
1994
Tamara Bruce
Australia
1994
Martha Jahn Martin
United States
1994
Karen Burton
United States
1994
Igor Majen
Slovania
2001
Peggy Busche
Germany
1996
Yuko Matsuzaki
Japan
1997
Vanessa Bouisset
France
1997
Angela Maurer
Germany
2007
Brenden Chapel
Australia
2005
David Meca
Spain
1997
George Brunstad
United States
2004
Simone Menoni
Italy
1998
Mariam Cassidy
United States
1994
Attila Molnar
Hungary
1995
Sid Cassidy
United States
1995
David O'Brien
Australia
1994
Samantha Chabotar
United States
1996
Natalia Pankina
Russia
2001
Anne Chagnaud
France
1994
Rafael Perez
Argentina
2003
Gabriel Chailou
Argentina
1997
Cindy Persoon
Belgium
2000
Sergio Chiarandini
Italy
1994
Dimitar Petrov
Bulgaria
1996
Melissa Cunningham
Australia
1994
Darija Pop
Serbia/Montenegro
2006
Silvia Dalotto
Argentina
1994
Ksina Popova
Russia
2007
Diego Degano
Argentina
1994
Celeste Punet
Argentina
2003
Igor De Souza
Brazil
1997
Frank Reynolds
United States
1996
Kelly Dixon
Australia
1994
Grant Robinson
Australia
1996
Kelly Driffield
Australia
1998
Anton Sanatchev
Russia
2001
Julio Fernandez
Argentina
1994
Nathalie Sauvageau
Canada
1994
Morgan Filer
United States
2004
Ragan Schniber
United States
1999
Fabio Fusi
Italy
1999
Guus Razoux Schutz
Netherlands
2007
Marco Formentini
Italy
2007
Carol Sing
United States
1999
Jack Gillen
United States
1998
Tobie Smith
United States
1997
Annie Grandisson
Canada
1994
Greg Streppel
Canada
1994
Stephane Gomez
France
2001
Pater Stoychev
Bulgaria
1999
Lisa Hazen
United States
1996
Natasa Tomanovic
Croatia
1994
Yvetta Hlavacova
Czech Republic
2007
Fernando Terrilli
Argentina
1994
Pete Huisveld
United States
1994
Viola Valli
Italy
2000
Chad Hundeby
United States
1994
Edith Van Dijk
Holland
1997
Zoltan Kade
Hungary
1994
Hans Van Goor
Netherlands
1994
Britta Kamrau
Germany
1997
Christof Wandratsch
Germany
1994
Kaylin Keller
United States
2007
Andre Wilde
Germany
1999
Tracey Knowles
Australia
1998
Chuck Wiley
United States
1994
Iouri Koudinov
Russia
2007
Ria Wilemse
Netherlands
2007
Kudinova Juri
Russia
2007
Mohammed Zanata
Egypt
2004

Certificate of Merit International Marathon Swimming Hall of Fame
Individual Coach Administrator

Recipient Country Year Recipient Country Year
Timur Absaliamov
Russia/FINA TOWSC
1994
Mahmoud Hassan
Egypt/FINA-TOWSC
1997
Frank D'Alonzo
USA/IMSA
1997
Klaus Henter
Germany/FINA TOWSC
1997
Hans Beijer
Netherlands/FINA
2000
Kevin Holtom
Australia
1994
Valerijus Belovas
Lithuania\FINA
2000
Manuel de Jesus
Puerto Rico/FINA
1994
Lynn Blouin
Canada/IMSA
1997
Tim Johnson
United States
2005
Flavio Bomio
Switzerland/FINA TOWSC
1994
Nory Kruchen
Luxenburg/FINA
2000
Diki Bojadazi
Macedonia/IMSA
1997
William Matson
New Zealand/FINA TOWSC
1994
Svyatoslav Borisevitch
Belarus/FINA-TOWSC
1997
Lauie Marchwinski
United States
2007
Dardo Brando
Argentina/FINA TOWSC
1994
Dennis Miller
Fiji Islands/FINATOWSC
1997
Dick Campion
Australia
1994
Patric Mills
United States
1999
Jamie Cardenas
Columbia
2000
Jaroslav Novak
Czech Republic/FINA TOWSC
1994
David Clark
United States
1995
Coaracy Nunes Filho
Brazil/FINA TOWSC
1994
Alan Clarkson
Great Britain/FINA TOWSC
1994
Pierre Otis
Canada/IMSA
1997
Georges Delgado
Ecuador/FINA TOWSC
2005
Clive Rickards
Australia/FINA TOWSC
1994
Dr. Mohie Farid
Eygpt/FINA
2000
Monier Sabry
Egypt/FINA TOWSC
1994
Paulo Frishkencht
Portugal/FINA TOWSC
2005
Nancy Schnaar
United States
1998
Christopher Guesdon
Australia/FINA TOWSC
1997
Vladimir Srb
Czech Republic/FINA
2000
Thomas Haces
Cuba/FINA
2000
Gunnar Werner
Sweden/FINA
1994
Ronnie Wong
Hong Kong/FINA TOWSC
1994
Otto & RinyZeijpveld
Netherlands
2007

Certificate of Merit International Marathon Swimming Hall of Fame
Organizations

Recipient Country Year
Camp Ak-O-Mak
Canada
2006
Camp Chicopi
Canada
2006
Organizing Committee, Hernandarias/Parana Marathon
Argentina
1994
Organizing Committee, Traversee du Lac Memphremaog
Canada
1994
Organizing Committee, Traversee du Lac St. Jean
Canada
1994
Organizing Committee, Around the Island Swim Atlantic City
United States
1994
Channel Swimming Association
Great Britain
1994
Catalina Channel Swimming Federation
United States
1994
Organizing Committee, Riviera Marathon
Italy
1994
Organizing Committee, Capri/Napoli Marathon
Italy
1994
Organizing Committee, Tapes Marathon
Brazil
1994
Organizing Committee, Santa Fe/Coronda Maraton
Argentina
1994
Organizing Committee, Manhattan Island Swim Association
United States
1994
British Long Distance Swimming Association (BLDSA)
Great Britain
1994
Organizing Committee, First FINA World Open Water Championships- Honolulu
Hawaii, United States
2000
Organizing committee, FINA Marathon World Cup, Rosario
Argentina
2000
Organizing Committee, FINA Marathon Swimming World Cup, Bled
Slovakia
2000
Atlantic City 50th Annual Swim
United States
2003
Lac St Jean 50th Annual Swim
Canada
2004
Scheerwolde
Netherlands
2007
Vlaandereren Marathon
Netherlands
2007
Oosterhoutse Zwem & Polo Club De Warande
Netherlands
2007
IJsselmeerzwemmarathon
Netherlands
2007

Click here to download and print the Application for Recording a Marathon Swim. (.PDF format)

 

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