Monday, June 17, 2024

Mexicans swim Japan’s Tsugaru Strait in Oceans Seven marathon

Mexican swimmers Mariel Hawley and Nora Toledano swam across Japan’s Tsugaru Strait in record time Sunday as part of the Oceans Seven marathon swimming challenge.

It was their fifth completed swim in the seven-strait marathon.

It took the two swimmers 6 hours and 20 minutes to reach the island of Hokkaido, after wading into the waters off the coast of the island of Honshu.

“I swam with Nora Toledano and we made good time . . .,” Hawley told the newspaper Marca. “We started swimming at one in the morning, and we never stopped. I was never cold, [and] the water was between 15 and 17 C. We reached Hokkaido despite the rain and fog.”

The duo’s time broke all records set by women in the past, and was also the second best overall.

After successfully crossing Tsugaru, Hawley and Toledano are well on their way to completing the Oceans Seven challenge, which also includes the North Channel between Ireland and Scotland, Cook Strait between New Zealand’s North and South islands, the Molokai Channel in Hawaii, the English Channel between England and France, the Catalina Channel between Santa Catalina Island and Los Angeles and the Strait of Gibraltar between Spain and Morocco.

The Tsugaru crossing was Hawley’s second attempt at tackling the strait that connects the Sea of Japan with the Pacific Ocean. On that occasion, climate conditions severely hampered her progress. “After five hours of swimming I had advanced very little.”

Hawley described the contrasting conditions that led to this year’s success: “The night was spectacular, and by dawn the sea was flat. My daughter was my team, and she was supporting me all the time, encouraging me. I am very proud.”

Hawley’s and Toledano’s is the second successful crossing of the Tsugaru Strait by a Mexican. Antonio Argüelles crossed it last year as part of his successful completion of the challenge.

Source: Marca (sp)

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