800m To 10 km At The Authentic Marathon Swim
Courtesy of WOWSA, Huntington Beach, California.
The 2021 Authentic Marathon Swim will be held on July 2nd and 4th at Artemision, Greece. The inaugural event was held last year when Istiaia-Edipsos Mayor Kontzias said, “It was a special honor for our municipality to revive this historic sporting event based on the principle of Plutarch’s statement, ‘Courage is the beginning of victory.’“
Last September, the incomparable Petar Stoychev who won the 10 km race while Olympic silver medalist Spyros Gianniotis served as an official and two-time Olympic marathon swimmers Yasu Hirai competed as did FINA masters swimming champion Vicky Kouveli who won the women’s 10 km race with Greek national-level swimmers also participating (Olympian Marianna Lymperta, Sofia Psilolignou, Giannis Kotsiopoulos, Dimitris Negris, Andreas Georgakopoulos, Stellina Aplanti, Ilektra Lebl, Olga Ntalla and George Skotadis).
The 10 km course overlays the shipwrecks of the naval battle of Artemision that took place in 480 B.C. Athletes will follow the example of Skyllias and his daughter Hydna, the very first marathon swimmers* according to The Father of History, Herodotus who helped the Greek forces in the historic battle of Artemision against the Persian fleet. The course is held at the Straits of Artemision, connecting Central Greece with Thessaly and the regional units of Evia, Magnesia and Fthiotida.
The event includes 800m, 1.5 km, 3 km, 5 km and 10 km races that all require a tow float to be used. Early bird (33% discount) pricing is available until April 30th. The 800m, 1.5 km, 3 km and 5 km course start and end at Pefki Beach. Register here.
For more information on the event, visit www.authenticmarathonswim.com.
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* Prior to a critical naval battle with the Persians, Hydna and her father, Scyllis, volunteered to assist Greek forces by vandalizing the nearby Persian naval fleet. After reaching Greece, Persian king Xerxes I had moored his ships off the coast of Mount Pelion to wait out a storm prior to the Battle of Artemisium. Hydna was well known in Greece as a skilled swimmer, having been trained by her father, a professional swim instructor named Scyllias, from a young age. She was known for her ability to swim long distances and dive deep into the ocean. On the night of the attack, father and daughter swam roughly 16 km through rough, choppy waters to reach the ships. They silently swam among the boats, using knives to cut the moorings and dragging away the submerged anchors. Without anchors and moorings to secure the ships, they crashed together in the stormy water. Most of the ships sustained considerable damage and a few sank. The resulting delay allowed the Greek navy more time to prepare in Artemisium and ultimately led to a victory for Greek forces at Salamis.
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