Joel Matos' Swim for Cause at the Ultra Challenge: Caribbean Series 2019

Joel Matos’ Swim for Cause at the Ultra Challenge: Caribbean Series 2019

History’s Fastest Swim from White Bay, Jost Van Dyke in BVI to Las Croabas, Fajardo in Puerto Rico

After 47 hours 6 minutes 25 seconds and a total of 92 km (using the straight-line methodology) Joel Matos finishes the Ultra Challenge: Caribbean Series 2019. 

The Ultra Challenge was a multi-sport event produced by AE Syndicate LLC, with a solo, unassisted, open water marathon stage swim as its main event. The swim was performed by Matos, starting from White Bay, in Jost Van Dyke, British Virgin Islands and finishing in Las Croabas, Fajardo, Puerto Rico. Matos started the swim on May 24th 2019 at 6:39 pm and ended it Sunday, May 26th at 5:48 pm. The swim was also registered by the Guinness World Record® as an Official Attempt for the fastest swim between Puerto Rico and the British Virgin Islands.

One safety stop was made during the attempt, which generated two swimming stages. The first stage started at 6:39 pm on May 24th, from White Bay, Jost Van Dyke, British Virgin Islands, and ended at 2:20 am on May 26th near the island of Culebras when he boarded onto the escort vessel in open water. His second stage started at 7:46 am on May 26th on the same coordinates of the end of the first stage and ended in Las Croabas Bay, Fajardo, Puerto Rico at 5:48 pm.

Matos swam across the Caribbean Sea to proudly support the San Jorge’s Children Hospital Foundation whose children were his main motivation. As part of the event, the event was able to raise more than US$11,500 to the foundation. Also, Matos swam to raise awareness on open water conservation through the Conservación ConCiencia, a local non-profit that collected more than four tons of submarine waste during the Ultra Challenge.

The San Jorge Children’s Hospital Foundation is a non-profit that provides medical treatment and reconstructive surgery to children afflicted with cancer, thus improving their quality of life. The Foundation, with the help of professional groups of diverse disciplines, establishes the specific criteria and priorities in order to allocate proper funds to the children. This Foundation is the first vehicle affording economic support to the infant population of limited economic income of the island while providing top-notch medical expertise with cutting edge technology and equipment. Conservación ConCiencia is a registered non-profit organization dedicated to environmental research and conservation that promotes sustainable development by working in collaboration with communities, NGOs, governments, academia and the private sector. Conservación ConCiencia is born out of the need to address environmental issues in a multifaceted manner utilizing an interdisciplinary toolbox that integrate life sciences, societal welfare and economic security into a problem-solving approach to today’s most pressing environmental problems.

Patsy Arroyo-Ramirez, one of Puerto Rico’s premier ultra marathon runners ran 60 miles from the Municipality of Arroyo to Fajardo in 11 hours. Also, Jorge Quintana, formerly ranked among the top 20 stand-up paddleboarder (SUP) in the world, joined Matos as he swam his last part. As part of Jorge’s performance, he led a group of SUPs from the Island of Culebra to Fajardo totaling more than 25 miles. Finally, ultra-cyclist Francisco “Bobby” Maldonado rode around the Island, starting and finishing in Las Croabas, Fajardo Puerto Rico totaling more than 300 miles. All these athletes worked under the technical direction of renowned personal trainer Randy Soler.

Copyright © 2021 by Joel Matos

Steven Munatones