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Aussie marathon swimming legends named

by ZwemZa on August 2nd, 2020

Chloe McCardel has been named among Australia’s marathon swimming hall of famers. Credit: AAP

Marathon swimming legends Annette Kellermann, Des Renford, Shelley Taylor-Smith and Chloe McArdle headline a list of 37 inaugural inductees named into the Australian Marathon Swimming Hall of Fame.

McCardle celebrated the honour with her 32nd crossing of the English Channel on Friday, confirming her status as Australia’s greatest to conquer the gruelling challenge.

The Who’s Who of marathon and open water swimmers and contributors also includes Olympian Linda McGill, Trent Grimsey, Susie Maroney, John Koorey and visually impaired swimmer James Pittar.

Australians have taken on some of the most treacherous marathon and open water swims in the world, from the Channel to Loch Ness, the Danube and Amazon rivers, and the sport’s Olympic debut in Beijing in 2008.

It all started with NSW 110 yards and one mile championship Kellermann making three unsuccessful English Channel attempts in 1905.

But she went on to win races in the Thames, the Danube, Boston Harbor and the Seine River and became a pivotal figure in swimming history.

Maroubra lifesaver Renford became King of the Channel for his 19 crossings in 19 attempts after taking up the sport aged 39, while the undisputed Queen, McCardle, will attempt a 33rd and 34th crossing over the next fortnight.

Olympian McGill became the first Australian to cross the Channel in 1965 while Manly’s John Koorey was the first Australian man in 1969.

Taylor Smith was Australia’s first world open water champion at the 1991 World Championships over 25km, braving a jellyfish-infested Swan River, and went on to claim the Manhattan Island Marathon five times.

Queenslander Grimsey, a silver medallist over 25km at the World Championships in 2009, holds the world record for the fastest crossing of the English Channel of six hours 55 minutes, set in 2012.

“Since Annette Kellerman set the scene … over a century ago Australia has produced many superb marathon swimmers and contributors who have had history-making careers encompassing events both in Australia and abroad,” spokesman and convenor Chris Guesdon said.

“Recognition of them … in one place is essential for history and the preservation of achievements in our sport.”

Australian Marathon Swimming Hall of Fame Honourees – Class of 2020:
* Jennifer Anderson
* Lauren Arndt
* David Bates
* Clive Berry Rickards
* Kate Brookes-Peterson
* Roger Bruce
* Tamara Bruce
* Richard Campion
* Brendan Capell
* Graeme Carroll
* Cavill Family
* Melissa Cunningham
* William Ford
* Melissa Gorman
* Trent Grimsey
* Christopher Guesdon
* Susanne Guesdon
* Kevin Holtom
* Annette Kellerman
* Tracy Knowles
* John Koorey
* Susie Maroney OAM
* Chloë McCardel
* Linda McGill MBE
* Joseph Mitchell
* Lynton Mortensen
* David O’Brien OAM
* Penny Palfrey
* James Pittar
* Des Renford MBE
* Grant Robinson
* Rottnest Channel Swim Association
* Mark Saliba
* Josh Santacaterina
* Shelley Taylor-Smith
* Gary Toner
* Suzanne Toner


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