Courtesy of WOWSA, Huntington Beach, California.

We had great conditions on the water today with light winds out of the south, but there was boat traffic that created some chop in the Upper Bay,” recalled race director Rondi Davies about the 7-stage 8 Bridges Hudson River Swim in New York. “But all of the swimmers finished strong and had a great day.

We have two new 7-stage finishers, Cheryl Reinke and Paige Christie, for a total of six in the 6-year history of the event [that includes Grace van der Byl, Rondi Davies, Andrew Malinak and Lori King]. They had such a fantastic week and finished so close together for a 7-day, 120 mile event: Cheryl’s total time was 38 hours 43 minutes 12 seconds and Paige’s total time was 39 hours 7 minutes 11 seconds. They are both strong and amazing swimmers, as are the other 7-stagers: Thomas W. Kofler, Cristian Vergara, Jamie Tout, Devon Clifford and Steve Gruenwald.

It was a special week on the river
.”

Getting in and out of the water for extended periods of time is one of the toughest things open water swimmers can do,” observed Steven Munatones. “There are a number of multi-race or multi-day events on the global open water swimming schedule that taxes swimmers to their absolute max: Champion of Champions in Dover Harbour, Cork Distance Week in Sandycove, Ireland, the Cascade Lakes Swim Series & Festival in Oregon, the 8-mile Club at the aQuellé Midmar Mile in South Africa, or tackling multiple races at the World Ice Swimming Championships. But without a doubt, the 8 Bridges Hudson River Swim is the longest, toughest and most variable multi-day, multi-stage open water contest in human history. Finishing all 7 stages of 8 Bridges is a remarkable achievement, especially for an athlete in their 50’s like Cheryl Reinke.”

The six 7-stage finishers in 8 Bridges event history include:
1. Grace van der Byl: 31:47:52 in 2012
2. Rondi Davies: 32:36:33 in 2012
3. Lori King: 34:15:49 in 2015
4. Cheryl Reinke: 38:43:12 in 2016
5. Paige Christie: 39:07:11 in 2016
6. Andrew Malinak: 40:21:50 in 2014

Results for Stage 7, Liberty 18.1 miles (George Washington Bridge-Verrazano-Narrows Bridge):
1. Cheryl Reinke 5:19:15 (total time: 38:43:12; 7 of 7 stages)
2. Paige Christie 5:20:40 (total time: 39:07:11; 7 of 7 stages)
3. Neil Leyland 5:33:20
4. Abigail Fairman (Relay) 5:33:30
5. John Royer (Relay) 5:33:30
6. Jamie Tout 5:40:41
7. Yuta Tsuboi 5:44:20
8. Steve Gruenwald 5:51:05
9. Cristian Vergara 5:55:43
10. Devon Clifford 5:58:49
11. Jaimie Monahan 6:17:00
12. Thomas W. Kofler 6:51:14
DNF Frank Levy stopped at 3:47:05 due to vertigo

Additional articles on the 2016 8 Bridges Hudson River Swim:
*History: Christie vs. Reinke Recalls Van Der Byl vs. Davies Battle
*Stage 1: Cheryl Reinke Wins 8 Bridges Stage 1 Marathon
*Competitor: Elena Pavlova Swimming From Ukraine To New York
*Stage 2: Paige Christie Overcomes Conditions At 8 Bridges
*Stage 3: Cheryl Reinke Extends Slight Lead Under 8 Bridges
*Stage 4: Four For Cheryl Reinke At 8 Bridges
*Ageless Swimmers: Touting Jamie Under 8 Bridges
*Stage 5: Top Duo Duel Each Other And Weather
*Nerves: Goose Bumps While Swimming The 8 Bridges
*Stage 6: Swimming In Stages Down The Hudson River
*Stage 7: Cheryl Reinke, Paige Christie Go 7 For 7 At 8 Bridges
*Perseverance: Stage 6 Takes 6 For Capri Djatiasmoro

Copyright © 2016 by World Open Water Swimming Association