Jacques Tuset Completes Le Défi Edmond Dantès

Jacques Tuset Completes Le Défi Edmond Dantès

On February 26th, International Marathon Swimming Hall of Fame Honor Swimmer Jacques Tuset completed an unprecedented swim that replicated the escape of Edmond Dantès’ as it is told by Alexandre Dumas in his famous novel Le Comte de Monte-Cristo (The Count of Monte Cristo).

The 58-year-old Tuset explains, “Every end of June the 5 km Défi de Monté Cristo (English: Monte Cristo Challenge or EDF Aqua Challenge Marseille) open water swim is held, inspired by the novel by Alexandre Dumas. The race that starts from the Château d’If and finishes on Prado Beach in Marseille, France. But in the novel, the swim – the escape of Dantès – is quite different. So I imagined myself doing the same aquatic escape as described by the author.

In the novel, the fictional hero Edmond Dantès escapes at night, at the end of February, in cold water and on a route other than that of the Défi Monte-Cristo race. Indeed, it starts from the Château d’If – as in the novel – but it ends on the Île Tiboulen.

To my knowledge, no swimmer has attempted it before.

For this cold night swim, I had to prepare for this attempt two months before in order to obtain the necessary authorizations from French Coast Guard.

As an accomplished King of Prison Island Swimming , Tuset achieved his goal with a 7.7 km swim at night between the Château d’If and the Île Tiboulen in the 13.2°C water, finishing in 2 hours 27 minutes. He departed from Château d’If at 8:47 pm and arrived at Tiboulen Island at 11:15 p.m. “It was a beautiful adventure which represents my 20th escape from the Château d’If, the hardest and the most beautiful also from the Château.”

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Steven Munatones