Sunday, January 10, 2010

Give It The Ol' College Try Across The Sound

The 25K St. Vincent's SWIM Across the Sound Marathon announced its August 7th date of its 23rd annual race - as well as a new intriguing University Challenge.

Registration are now live for solo swimmer and two-person relay applicants. Team and University Challenge relay registrations will open on January 20th.

The SWIM Across the Sound Marathon started in 1987 as an amateur relay across Long Island Sound as a fundraiser for St. Vincent's cancer programs. In the early 1990’s, it became a professional marathon swim. "I remember the race fondly. There were some great races," said 7-time professional champion Shelley Taylor-Smith.

In an interesting twist in the 1990’s, amateur relays were introduced to compete alongside the professional swimmers. In 2003, the event returned to its roots with an all-amateur field with both relay teams and solo swimmers.

2010 will see an even more interesting evolution in the race history: the addition of the University Challenge team relay where teams are comprised of students and/or alumni from the same university or college. Anyone can join or captain a University Challenge team as long as all team members are either currently enrolled or attended the same university for at least two semesters.

Swimmers must complete the 25K within 9 hours and 30 minutes from West Beach in Port Jefferson, New York, across the Long Island Sound, to Captain’s Cove Seaport in Bridgeport, Connecticut. There will be a maximum of 20 solo swimmers, 10 two-person relays and up to 45 team relays accepted. "The organizers are very professional and really put on an outstanding race. They really know what they are doing," said NYC Pro Swim's Morty Berger.

There are minimum age requirements: 19 years for solo swimmers and two-person relay members and 13 years for team relay members. The minimum fundraising fees are US$1,500 for solo swimmers, US$3,500 for two-person relays and US$7,500 for team relays and University Challenge team relays. 100% of the funds raised will help provide financial assistance to cancer patients and their families as well as cancer screening, prevention and support programs.

A great event to give it a good ol' college try.

Copyright © 2009 by Steven Munatones

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