Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Open Water Swimming Heroes Of India

There are two Indians in the International Marathon Swimming Hall of Fame. Both men are incredible athletes who have left their footprints all over the world's waterways: Mihir Sen (inducted in 1966) and Tanarath Narayan Shenoy (inducted in 1987).

In 1958, Mihir became the first India to swim across the English Channel. He distinguished himself crossing six major straits in 1966: the Palk Strait between India and Sri Lanka in 25 hours 44 minutes, the Strait of Gibraltar between Spain and Morocco, 51.5 km (32 miles) across the Dardanelles from Gallipoli to Sendulbahir, Turkey, the length of the Panama Canal from the Atlantic Ocean to the Pacific Ocean in 35 hours and 30 minutes, and 32 km (20 miles) across the Bosphorus (Istanbul Strait) from Turkey to Asia.

Tanarath, who is a deaf-mute and legally blind, swam across the Strait of Gibraltar in 1988 and made three successful crossings of the English Channel, from France to England in 10 hours and 54 minutes in 1983 and from England to France in 10 hours and 55 minutes in 1984 and in 10 hours and 42 minutes in 1985. He also crossed the Catalina Channel in 10 hours 15 minutes in 1987. Copyright © 2009 by World Open Water Swimming Association

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