110 miles, 53 hours: Questions for Diana Nyad

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  • Here we are, 3 days after Diana completed this swim, and you don't have any idea why Diana hasn't dropped everything to gather every little scrap of paper to give to all of you. First of all, with the things that you all have been saying here, if it was up to me, I wouldn't give you doodly-squat. Who do you think you are, to make all of these allegations, and then making these demands, expecting Diana to come to you, begging for your approval? She knows she did it... the team knows she did it... the observers know she did it. The WORLD knows she did it. Diana does not need approval from you. You all want to make up your conspiracy theories, and pick apart every word that is said... who CARES? You remind me of Trekkies, dressing up in costumes and arguing about what color Tribble Captain Kirk first picked up. Who cares. I'm outa here.
  • "During a swim no physical contact with the swimmer shall be made by any person other than to pass food and drink or secure such items as light sticks for safety reasons." - http://cspf.co.uk/cs-and-pf-rules

    In Trent's video from last year it shows him taking feeds directly handed to him, and his crossing was ratified.
    If you hand over something to a swimmer you'll have to be careful not to touch the swimmer. That's why it's better to use a pole or rope.
    http://openwaterswimming.eu - Cold, wind, waves, sunburn, currents, jellyfish and flotsam! Hop in and join the fun!
  • I've read every post in this thread, and I've sensed no negativity from those asking for verification of Nyad's swim, just a desire for independent confirmation that she swam the thing under her own power. Most of us channel/marathon swimmers labor in relative obscurity. When a public figure like Nyad appears, the public figures that she represents all of us. So it makes sense that we would want to make sure that Nyad's swim is an actual swim and not another thing.

    In one of Woodkayaker's earlier posts, he or she states that "I was on the water with Diana for approximately 1/3 of the swim, while working as the kayak team Captain," and that, to paraphrase, Nyad swam under her own power for that time. I don't doubt that's true. But that leaves 2/3 of the swim unaccounted for, at least by Woodkayaker.

    Acquaintances of mine who know little about marathon swimming and who hear about this swim naturally assume that it's legitimate. How could it not be if Hillary Clinton texted her congratulations and David Letterman made it the butt of a few jokes? I'd love to tell them that I'm as excited as they are that she completed the swim. And I will--once I see or hear the evidence from an independent, qualified source.

  • NiekNiek Member
    edited September 2013
    Maybe you should re-focus all of this negativity into a little bit of gratitude, for 2 of the people that may be helping your sport to continue into the future.
    Without Diana the sport is and was doing very well. More races this year than last year in Europe http://openwaterswimming.eu/eventslist
    and then took the knowledge gained from Diana's efforts and expense, and GAVE that hard-won info to a competitor... YES. That was traitorous.
    Yes that's what openwater swimmers do. They freely exchange knowledge. They only compete in the water. On dry land they will help each other. That's what this forum is all about. To spread one's knowledge and help a fellow open water swimmer.
    It's traitorous not to help.
    http://openwaterswimming.eu - Cold, wind, waves, sunburn, currents, jellyfish and flotsam! Hop in and join the fun!
  • bruckbruck Member
    edited September 2013
    "Independent" observer #2, Roger McVeigh:

    image

    Some quotes from his publicly-accessible Facebook profile:
    waking up from the Dream; nice team celebration last evening; time to get back to training!
    feeling especially grateful for family, friends and good luck to be able to be part of the Nyad Swim
    was one small part of a cohesive team supporting one of the most amazing people you could ever meet
    She summed it all up when she popped out of the water after almost 53 hours of swimming and said she only had three things to say; (paraphrasing) she has learned, 1) To never give up, 2) You are never too old, and 3) Though swimming seems like an individual sport, it is all about the team
    Thank you Diana Nyad for your inspiration
    In fairness, I wouldn't expect even a truly independent observer to be immune to some emotions on witnessing this event.

    But I'll ask what I hope is a fair and straightforward question:

    Did either of the observers, Roger McVeigh or Janet Hinkle, have any previous experience observing a long distance open water swim? Any at all?
  • Good point. Woodkayaker. I too have had a few secrets. I accept it would hurt if they were divulged too widely and another swimmer took advantage. World firsts are like that. In four hours time, it is twenty years exactly, (and after a year of some horrid training sessions), I started my attempt to swim the English Channel, it was the worlds first backstroke. Another swimmer had already failed a few weeks earlier and I was pressured to get my swim done before he had a second attempt. I got across, but the other guy was devastated by the news.

    Next week I have another Channel swim (it's been twenty years, I am so excited). I will attempt to swim the English Channel 'The Undone Way'. The thing is, once I announce exactly what 'The Undone Way' actually is, anybody could try to have a go before me.

    But once I take my chance (succeed or not), there are no more secrets. I have absolutely no intention of hiding my data. Indeed, if I don't make it, I will actively encourage others to try (indeed this is my motivation), even if I no longer get to be first. I just want to be the first to try. I will then lay down the gauntlet.

    One thing is certain, I expect if Diana has recovered by now, she could simply turn up and do it (as could many other swimmers). I would hate that. It just seems that Diana has continued to try to make her failed swims successful by introducing elements that are designed to make it easier for her to get across. There are too many (accepted) elements already that assist us.

    The English Channel 'The Undone Way' is my way of saying: "Why should we try to make swims easier?" I don't want to 'Do a Nyad'. 'The Undone Way" is doing the Channel the hard way. And in some degree, it will balance off those accepted elements that otherwise make it 'easy', if 'easy' can ever be used to describe the English Channel.

  • bruckbruck Member
    edited September 2013
    Follow-up on previous post:

    If anyone thinks my use of scare quotes is mean, I'd simply note that "Official Observer" Janet Hinkle uses them too:

    image
  • pennypalfreypennypalfrey Member
    edited September 2013
    If an athlete claims to have broken the record of another athlete, surely both events should have been conducted under the same set of rules.
    During my Cayman Island swim in 2011 and my Cuba-Florida attempt in 2012 I was not touched at any time by any person. I applied my own sunblock and grease during my swim. I changed suits unassisted by treading water for up to 20 minutes while struggling to get my stinger suit on in the evening and off again in the morning after 12, 20 and 36 hours of swimming. I also adhered to marathon swimming rules of wearing only one porous, none buoyant suit at any time. Yes that did mean being, as one person on my boat likes to put it, “head down and butt naked”!
  • loneswimmerloneswimmer Admin
    edited September 2013
    I think that is was an unfortunate pause diversion to the discussion. I had genuinely hoped @Woodkayaker and others would be able to discuss some of the specific questions.

    Additionally, just to confirm @goldfishgoddess was apparently a troll account and the account has been removed. Nothing of value was lost. She has "very many experienced marathon swimmer friends", and claims she was "asked to be part of the [Diana Nyad] crew but couldn't make it in time". She claimed to be a marathon swimmer, when pressed for details that was changed to "swam on a high school team". She thinks I will be embarrassed by a threat of posting my reasonable correspondence to her to protect the forum from trolls and to verify any relevance on her Facebook account so you all have a look for some fun there.

    Members of Diana Nyad's team have been approved in the past 24 hours, by both @evmo & I. We have seen a big surge in page views and member applications and are having to introduce some short-term changes to sign-up as a consequence. We are wary of troll accounts signing up just as provocateurs instead of those genuinely interested in the discussion, regardless of opinion. The behind-the-scenes stuff doesn't normally have to make it out front-of-house but I feel these are relevant here.

    All the questions being asked are out in the open by people who don't hide behind anonymity. But remember what happened when @david_barra and others accepted DN's invitation to discussion the famous heat-drip device on DN's blog?

    *

    Hadyn's swim will be astonishing, he may have forgotten he kind of hinted what it was to me. No, I'm not telling, aand I can also say there's yet another amazing swim to be attempted hopefully in the next two weeks by another forum member. (I've been using those words a lot this year, it's good that it's nearly always positive).

  • Copying over this comment by marathon swimming legend Ted Erikson @SdogV, from the National Geographic website:
    Marathon swimmers desire critical information on any successful swim in order to assess it and consider whether they may try to beat it. If in fact, Ms. Nyad spent ~53 hours in the water, proceeded ~100 miles, by swimming, even if aided by tides, at age 64 it is remarkable.

    But this information should not come from only public relation sources. I must await reports of those who were in charge of navigation (captain), feeding (foods employed and how administered), handling (face mask, etc..) Her past records in Cuba, Channel, and LaTuque swimming have left some things to be desired.
    Contra @Woodkayaker, the folks with questions aren't exactly hurlers on the ditch...
  • There are questions about solid food. I don't understand what this has to do with it, but I will tell you - yes, she ate solid food. Bananas in bite-sized pieces that she would swim up and bite out of her handler's hand.

    obviously no true boat people were in charge. bananas are damn near the top of the banned list of items to bring on a boat. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sailors'_superstitions

    someone snuck a couple on the boat and it ended our 1st farallon relay.
  • paulmpaulm Member
    edited September 2013

    Now that she has completed the swim, I am sure that she will be sharing that info. But yes... the people that had once been on Diana's team, and then took the knowledge gained from Diana's efforts and expense, and GAVE that hard-won info to a competitor... YES. That was traitorous.

    ....To date I have chosen to stay away from this discussion....Any comment coming from our camp would be perceived as sour grapes.....BUT WOODKAYAKER- If you are talking about Chloe's attempt-your comment is an ABSOLUTE LIE....its absolutely crap. Maybe you should go back and talk to Luke Tipple (Diana's previous head shark diver- who didn't join our team ) and get him to fill you in on our call with him back in early January this year- where we made it very clear to him that we didn't want him or anyone else that may have been on Diana' or Penny's previous swims sharing any information with us that was proprietory or confidential ) Every single person who joined our team had the same conversation with us . Similarly we asked the same of them for future- but also encouraged them to use their skills to assist other swimmers in the future.

    In closing not once during the 6 months leading up to Chloe's attempt -did any member of out team make any Negative comment about Diana or her previous swims
  • edited September 2013
    Wilt Chamberlain once claimed to have had sexual relations with 10,000 different women, albeit not at the same time. That works out to a different woman every night for 27.4 years with no days off for things like Christmas or getting your male appendage splinted to heal, let alone time needed to recover from various STD's and crab lice infestations. This is widely doubted because he did not have, or did have and refused to share, the proper documentation for claiming such a record. This has three negative affects:
    1) It makes his record unratifiable, which is certainly a shame if he did it. I mean if I had a different woman point and laugh at me every night for 27.4 years, I certainly would want to get SOMETHING out of it other than psychiatrist bills and long scrubs with barbeque grill brushes and kerosene.
    2) Those who wish to set such a world record are always faced with being told "Yeah, but Wilt Chamberlin's record is 10,000" This means that the only way to claim said record free-and-clear is to beat 10,000. God knows I'm trying, but my current best estimate of when I'll do it is about 100 years after the universe collapses back in on itself under its own gravity. Maybe longer. ("Never give up!" is my motto.)
    3) Wilt Chamberlin may be my father and I didn't get anything from his will.

    With that in mind I suggest that the marathon swimming community keep asking polite and appropriate questions while being at least a little patient in having Ms. Nyad and/or her crew produce believable documentation. This will have four effects:
    1) We won't look too rude, jealous or nibby.
    2) We will eventually know if this is a real "record" or a Wilt-The-Stilt record.
    3) We will know if those coming after her have a real target or not.
    4) Most importantly, we will finally find out if Wilt Chamberlin is Ms. Nyad's father also.

    In the words of Frank Zappa "Maintain your aristocratic coolness."

    -LBJ
    "Only those who will risk going too far can possibly find out how far one can go." - T.S. Eliot
  • bobswimsbobswims Charter Member

    Who cares. I'm outa here.

    We care, and we will be here a long time to come.

  • bobswimsbobswims Charter Member
    edited September 2013


    2) Those who wish to set such a world record are always faced with being told "Yeah, but Wilt Chamberlin's record is 10,000" This means that the only way to claim said record free-and-clear is to beat 10,000. God knows I'm trying, but my current best estimate of when I'll do it is about 100 years after the universe collapses back in on itself under its own gravity. Maybe longer. ("Never give up!" is my motto.)

    10,000 in 100 years? That's 100 different woman every year. I am still going to demand appropriate documentation. Otherwise you are just using Wilt's imaginary record to try to prove that your own imaginary record is valid. I stand ready with my barbecue grill brush.
  • timsroottimsroot Member
    edited September 2013
    @Leonard_Jansen - That may be the best analogy I've seen on this forum. Close second to @loneswimmer's quacking Armstrong from yesterday
  • CraigMozCraigMoz Member
    edited September 2013
    For me the discussion is finished. The photo in this thread of DN being ASSISTED out of her suit, provides all the proof anyone needs.
    So we all should congratulate DN & her team on a fantastic ASSISTED swim, bloody brilliant & amazing.
    But it does not break @pennypalfrey record.
  • IronMikeIronMike Bishkek, KyrgyzstanCharter Member

    To those people, I say, F-U.

    Nice, @Woodkayaker. Way to keep this thread free from negativity!
  • I am sad that she was actively rooting against other swimmers. That is awful.

    I am sad that her kayaker was so rude here. That didn't help anything.

    I am sad that the independent observers were part of her xtreme dream team.

    I am sad that she has time to talk to everyone in the media but no one in her sport. I can see why she wouldn't come to an anonymous web forum. But why not release a public statement along with her swim data. If I had done something like this I would just release the captain's log and the observer's journals and put an end to the questions.

    The whole thing makes me sad. I was one of the last people who accepted that Lance Armstrong was doping. I kept thinking there is no way he could possibly have done that. I feel myself fighting the same internal battle here.
  • david_barradavid_barra Charter Member
    I can see why she wouldn't come to an anonymous web forum.

    Most of the posters here are not anonymous
    ...anything worth doing is worth overdoing.
  • True.
    Sarah Quesen, Pittsburgh PA.
    Lover of open water, aspiring distance swimmer

    But given DN's access to the media (she had a social media boat!) why not just release the data and give a statement. Is this harder to do than I think it is?
  • I understand @woodkayaker is "outa here"... But if he is still lurking (or anyone else from DN's Team), I was hoping he could answer these two questions:
    1) How much was he paid to be a member of DN's Team?
    2) What kind of Contract / Agreement did DN have him sign?
  • As long as we're compiling questions, here's another:

    Where was the GPS tracker located? Presumably on a boat? Which boat?

    And: Was this boat always in the general vicinity of Ms. Nyad?
  • malinakamalinaka Charter Member
    edited September 2013
    Data!

    This time I got my Downton Abbey out of the way first. Then dug in to Diana's course.

    If you aren't familiar with the Firebug extension for Firefox, you'll love it. It lets you see the code for pieces of web pages, and makes tracing javascript dependents much easier. It was through this that I came across the raw data from DN's home page tracking map. (www.diananyad.com/swim/currentswim and www.diananyad.com/swim/mapdata)

    After some time spent formatting the data, moving it from text file to .csv to .kml, I was able to plot it in Google Earth and verify that currentswim is the data the Xtreme Dream team presents as her actual course. (See Figure 1).

    image
    Fig 1: KML plot of DN's map data next to the guesstimate I proposed earlier this week.

    Knowing that this is in fact the right data, I dug into the 471 coordinates it provided.
    Given the large number of points, I'm assuming this was automatically collected and therefore should be at equal time intervals. 471 points, 53 hours, 6.75 minutes per point. After calculating the local distance per degree in each direction, I could work out how far the tracker moved per time interval, and then graphed that (Figure 2). To account for those unusual readings we all get when using a GPS, I've smoothed it to a 6-interval average (about 40 minutes?) and that shows up in dark blue.

    image
    Fig 2: Plot of data from dyananyad.com. 0.8 km/pt correlates with roughly 7.1km/hr

    So reading this graph, I'm asked to believe that Diana swam 27 hours at her normal pace, picked up some speed the first morning as the Gulf Stream moved in her favor (that's what her diary says), and then BAM! nearly triples her speed as she begins complaining about lung discomfort. She holds an amazing pace for the next seven hours, through the second night's squall with shark divers flippering their fastest to keep up with this rocketing swimmer until dawn, and then...we're back to a nice normal pace as the sun rises on her final day.

    So what about currents? Did she get a current assist to the tune of 3mph? Did she manage to swim for seven hours at a pace thrice what I hold on a killer two hour sprint-distance pool set? So far, no one has found anything convincing to say she did. So far, all anyone has found is something saying she got pushed east a bunch (See Figure 3), which would not give her anywhere near this advantage.

    image
    Fig 3: Screen shot of currents during her swim. They head due east.

    When I came up with this last night, I was skeptical. I emailed the data (excel sheet included) to R and E (both on this forum, feel free to give a wave hello if you'd like), asking them to check glaring errors and offer their informed input. I'm glad to send to the same sheet I used to do my calculations, but the beauty of all this is: the data came directly from the Diana Nyad team via their website. You can go straight there if you want and look at it. Then come back here and let us know if you've got a different opinion.

    My mind is made up, but I'm still having trouble coming to terms with it. However, in the absence of ANY other data to back up Diana's claim, well...what else can I think?
    I don't wear a wetsuit; it gives the ocean a sporting chance.
  • suziedodssuziedods Member
    edited September 2013
    OMG. I think I love Malinaka....
    I love swimming
    www.suziedodsswimcoaching.com
  • david_barradavid_barra Charter Member
    malinaka said:

    Data!

    ... this is why geeks should rule the world.
    ...anything worth doing is worth overdoing.
  • Well done, Andrew. Everyone, keep in mind that the SECOORA date is not a model, but rather a real time reading of actual currents. You can also get data via the ocean color sensor (VIIRS) on the Suomi National Polar-orbiting Partnership (SNPP) satellite.
    Ron Collins
    Clearwater, Florida
    DistanceMatters.com
  • IronMikeIronMike Bishkek, KyrgyzstanCharter Member

    malinaka said:

    Data!

    ... this is why geeks should rule the world.
    For the non-geeks here, what are the different color lines again, @malinaka.
  • malinakamalinaka Charter Member
    @ironmike: The colors are:

    Green, red, cyan: my unfounded guess at how she may or may not completed the swim (from a previous post of mine above). Not relevant to this post, other than to show the evolution of my thought process.

    Orange: the KML generated by the data found on DN's site.
    I don't wear a wetsuit; it gives the ocean a sporting chance.
  • Whatever your thoughts on this issue (I'm sure all of y'all could guess where I stand), it is even more apparent that we all MUST ensure each and every swim we do that has the potential to go down into any record book (even if no record was broken) includes an independent observer and access to his or her report.

    And also, @malinaka is a frickin legend.
  • Haydn said:

    For a Guiness World record, you have to apply to Guiness before your event. They will usually expect the event to be done in accordance with the rules of the governing bodies and will expect the governing bodies observers to ratify a success. Many events (my World Record EC first backstroke swim) won't interest them, they said because the Channel had already been swum. I expect they would say the Cuba swim had already been done too. Although the mileage of Diana's swim might be a new open water distance record, although easily beaten by downstream river swims.

    The best she can hope for is a world record for an 'assisted' swim. Her swim cannot be compared to the existing world record set by Penny Palfrey since Diana opted to be touched throughout her swim and Penny was never touched by her crew or touched any members of her crew as per all accepted channel federation rules.

  • @Malinaka -
    Nicely done. Very nice, indeed.

    I am, however, a bit uncomfortable with the conclusions which are predicated upon the assumption that the data points are of a uniform time interval. Your thought process in reaching that assumption is reasonable, but since a person's reputation is on the line, I'd personally feel better KNOWING that was the case. Also, a 6 point moving average (or similar) is good for GPS "jitters", but wouldn't help much with varying time intervals, especially if there were extended periods with, say, shorter time intervals followed by longer time intervals, etc.
    Like I said, very nicely done and certainly adds more pressure for a full disclosure, but I am still not 100% comfortable. (Not that it's anyone's obligation to make ME comfortable, but the "opposition" could potentially seize on this.)

    -LBJ
    "Only those who will risk going too far can possibly find out how far one can go." - T.S. Eliot
  • This has nothing to do with the doubts raised here. However, a lot of the newsmedia refer to her as Diana Nyad *grandmother*.
    Pretty sure you need to have kids (who then go on to have kids) to be a grandmother. I never heard that she was on the procreational side of the playing field. Unless this is a sponsored war orphan somewhere?

    Also, @malinaka AWESOME!!!
  • evmoevmo Admin
    edited September 2013
    Some insightful, objective reporting from Outside Online:

    http://www.outsideonline.com/news-from-the-field/Doubts-Surrounding-Nyads-Cuba-Florida-Swim.html

    According to noted journalist Daniel D. Snyder: "Haters, as they say, will hate."
  • Loving me the Malinaka data!
  • KarenTKarenT Charter Member
    Older women are routinely referred to in the media as grandmothers regardless of their reproductive status. I don't know whether Nyad (or perhaps her partner) has had children / grandchildren, but it's much more likely that the lazier parts of the media are just using it to signal contrast with age / gender expectations.
  • IronMikeIronMike Bishkek, KyrgyzstanCharter Member
    evmo said:

    Some insightful, objective reporting from Outside Online:

    http://www.outsideonline.com/news-from-the-field/Doubts-Surrounding-Nyads-Cuba-Florida-Swim.html

    According to noted journalist Daniel D. Snyder: "Haters, as they say, will hate."

    I would add: "LOL."

    So, they just take others' reporting and re-report it?
  • @IronMike - yeah, but they did add the part about haters hating, so there's that...
  • Malinaka just might be the long lost third child of the great debunker, Richard Feynman.
    Lactate is for wimps.
  • evmoevmo Admin
    edited September 2013
    Diana - or someone using her account - Diana's Facebook account posted the following response to my posting of Andrew's analysis:
    Hello, folks...I'm befuddled....breaking what rules? Getting help to get through a current? Have no earthly idea what you're talking about. We did not break one rule. I never of course touched a boat or another person. Swam out in the open sea the entire 53 hours. Nothing breaking the current. I wouldn't even know how to go about doing that.We have submitted two independents overseers comprehensive and accuracy observation notes from the entire crossing. Those will be judged by the auspices of the sport and different record keepers. Trust me, this dream too important to me to have any slight thing outside the fair, just, ethical and agreed-upon rules of our sport. I am an honest, straightforward person. Never been anything but. Every attempt I've made has been by the rule books. And now this successful crossing was done in same fashion. With all due respect, diana.....but, by the way, by all means, ask me direct questions....you will be answered respectfully and with precise accuracy
    Also, if it's the time that has you doubting, listen, I have had so much bad luck in terms of conditions of this quest. Roiling eddies in the Gulf Stream. The Stream screaming to the East.
    This time, although the seas were rough so we weren't so lucky, wind-wise, the Stream was our friend from almost the beginning of our entry into it. You get lucky if the Stream tilts toward a NE axis, instead of due East. But for us the Stream Gods smiled, at long last, and we had an axis that pointed close to due N. Yes, I got lucky. But that's the way all extreme endurance endeavors go. You get the summit Everest day when there isn't a drop of wind....or you don't. I've tried and tried for 35 years to make this crossing. Never had all conditions in my favor. Most experts on this swim agree that no swimmer is ever going to get the many conditions to cooperate all at once and that's why it would never be done. Can you fault me for sticking with it and finally, finally, getting a Stream that was in my favor? Believe me, there was plenty of wind and wave action, not so lucky on that front. But what should we do to swimmers who got out in waters where sometimes the tides or currents or winds do such and such, other times the opposite?
    The records only valid if the conditions are deplorable as possible???? Thank you for listening
  • timsroottimsroot Member
    edited September 2013
    We have submitted two independents overseers comprehensive and accuracy observation notes from the entire crossing. Those will be judged by the auspices of the sport and different record keepers.
    Auspices of the sport? What does that mean?

    Different record keepers? Who are those?

    And how does she explain the pictures of people helping her get into her stinger suit?
  • IronMikeIronMike Bishkek, KyrgyzstanCharter Member
    And to whom did her "overseers" submit these notes? I'd love to read them.
  • loneswimmerloneswimmer Admin
    edited September 2013
    @timsroot, I assume "Auspices of the sport" means the same as last year's "This has been approved by the sport of open water swimming".

    I recall Lance Armstrong and Irish journalist Paul Kimmidge, once of the handful of journalists who pursued Armstrong, and Armstrong's humiliation & bullying of Kimmidge in front a press conference. No other journalist demurred.

    I also recall the last time DN used the term "respectfully" was just before the attacks on reputable swimmers here on her forum, as I mentioned above.

    Expect the stakes to be raised, the words more shrill, the attacks against haters to increase. Luckily we have hundreds people of unsullied reputation here.

    And here's a video for @malinaka. He gets to pick which one he is.

    I think it'll be Han.
  • evmoevmo Admin
    edited September 2013
    This was my response (I really would prefer the discussion take place here on ms.org rather than on my personal Facebook page):
    Hello Diana. Thank you for your comments. I have re-posted them over at marathonswimmers.org, a global community of fellow marathon swimmers who are fascinated with the details of your 53-hour adventure - and probably more knowledgeable than any other group about what goes into such an undertaking.

    http://www.marathonswimmers.org/forum/discussion/606/110-miles-53-hours-questions-for-diana-nyad/p4
    I believe many of the questions would be clarified by the public release of reports and data from your observers and navigators. It would also be interesting to hear you expand on the phrase "agreed upon rules of our sport" - what specifically do you mean by that?

    Of course, I don't presume to speak for the community. If you cared to join the Forum, we would all welcome your contributions respectfully and gratefully.
    Is that fair?
  • Outside Online is championing for an older, openly-gay athlete. Can't fault them for that, and can't fault them for resenting some of the early posts on these threads, which were laced with acid and ad-hominem remarks. I do hope the well-researched, factual posts get addressed by Diana's team soon. It'll be good for her, for all of us, and for the sport.

    What I would like is for someone friendly-but-cool-headed person to approach her and invite her to the forum, where we can all have a conversation about this with no vitriol and preaching. After all, even if there's a benign explanation for all of this, wouldn't it be useful for all of us to know more about anti-jelly salves and helpful currents?
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