The world’s longest competitive open water swimming competition began today.
17 swimmers traversed 18.3 miles (29.4 km) down the Hudson River in Stage 1 from the Rip Van Winkle Bridge to the Kingston Rhinecliff Bridge with the water at 25°C (77°F). Stage 1 was won by 51-year-old phenom Cheryl Reinke.
“With the air temperature at 33°C (92°F), a south southwestern wind diminished the currents and made for a tough day, even though the water conditions were flat and near-perfect,” said Davies.
Second place Paige Christie said, “It was a beautiful day 1 on the majestic Hudson. A huge thanks to Margrethe Hørlyck-Romanovsky for keeping me safe, fed, and motivated; she is incredible. The race directors are putting on a great event; I am so impressed with their relentless efforts and positivity. The water quality was great.”
1 Cheryl Reinke of York Swim Club, South Carolina 4:58:45 [first of 7 stages]
2 Paige Christie of North Andover, Massachusetts 5:04:38 [first of 7 stages; shown in lower photo]
3 Charlie Nadel of Westport, Connecticut 5:30:15
4 Jamie Tout of Austin, Texas 5:39:23 [first of 7 stages]
5 Todd Erickson of San Antonio, Texas 5:40:49
6 John Hughes of Port Chester, New York 5:48:32
7 Devon Clifford of New Rochelle, New York 5:50:34 [first of 7 stages]
8 Kimberly Plewa of Rahway, New Jersey 6:05:08
9 Steve Gruenwald of Faribault, Minnesota 6:10:15 [first of 7 stages]
10 Laura Picardo of New York, New York 6:13:49
11 Elena Pavlova of Brooklyn, New York 6:17:30
12 Dongho Choi of Princeton, New Jersey 6:19:54
13 Erica Flickinger of Phoenixville, Pennsylvania 6:35:13 [shown in upper photo]
14 Cristian Vergara of Brooklyn New York / Chile 6:45:15 [first of 7 stages]
15 Martin Turecky of Pleasant Gap, Pennsylvania 6:54:21
16 Mo Siegel of Piermont, New York 7:23:20
17 Thomas W. Kofler of Meran, Italy 7:34:00 [first of 7 stages]
For one week, each day’s marathon swim will begin north of one bridge and end on the south side of the next bridge, covering distances ranging from 13.2 miles to 19.8 miles.
Although the bulk of the swimmers are relatively close to the average age of 49, the age ranges from 17-year-old Nadel to 64-year-old