Julieta Núñez and Ricardo ‘Cate’ López, both from Santiago, Chile, began their two-year preparation for their Antarctica swim with research, commitment and expert assistance.
They boostered their training by doing several swims that culiminated in their 2-year mission to do a 1-mile swim in Antarctica.
Their preparation for Antarctica included swims across the Chacao Channel (Chiloe Island), the Beagle Channel, the Strait of Magellan and Lake Titicaca (at 4100 meters altitude). Then, they waited for weeks for swimable conditions in Antarctica together with Víctor ‘Tiburon’ Contreras, another Chilean Antarctica swimmer who swam at the bottom of the world in 1987.
Julieta and Cate wanted to swim in the same place (Deception Island from Punta Perford to Punta Collins) and the same distance (1 mile) as Tiburon did (in 32 minutes).
They traveled by airplane from Punta Arenas to Rey Jorge Island on February 24th and then they took an Ice boat to Deception Island. On February 27th, they both swam in 0.5°C (33°F) water. Julieta took 36 minutes and Cate finished in 22 minutes.
Southern California native, born 1962, is the creator of the WOWSA Awards, Oceans Seven, Openwaterpedia, Citrus Corps, World Open Water Swimming Association, Daily News of Open Water Swimming, Global Open Water Swimming Conference. He is Chief Executive Officer of KAATSU Global and KAATSU Research Institute. Inductee in the International Marathon Swimming Hall of Fame (Honor Swimmer, Class of 2001) and Ice Swimming Hall of Fame (Honor Contributor - Media, Class of 2019), recipient of the International Swimming Hall of Fame's Poseidon Award (2016), International Swimming Hall of Fame's Irving Davids-Captain Roger Wheeler Memorial Award (2010), USA Swimming's Glen S. Hummer Award (2007, 2010) and Harvard University's John B. Imrie Award (1984). Served on the FINA Technical Open Water Swimming Committee and as Technical Delegate with the 2011 Special Olympics World Summer Games, and 9-time USA Swimming coaching staff.