On a historic day, the Back Wash Team Completes Travessia do Leme ao Pontal

On a historic day, the Back Wash Team Completes Travessia do Leme ao Pontal

Courtesy of Adherbal de Oliveira, Travessia do Leme ao Pontal, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.

On November 21st, Adherbal de Oliveira reported a very special swim in the history of the Travessia do Leme ao Pontal (Leme to Pontal Swimming Association) and open water swimming in Brazil.

He writes, “The team of 42-year-old Guilherme Linhares de Oliveira Gomes, 36-year-old Letícia Sampaio de Menezes Maciel, 41-year-old Ricardo Siqueira Antunes, and 42-year-old Thaís Pacheco de Araújo completed the 36 km crossing from Leme to Pontal with neoprene in 12 hours 45 minutes.

The quartet prepared under the guidance of coach Bruno Ribeiro of the BF Swim Team. Some training sessions were carried out at night and around islands close to the city of Niterói, with the objective of simulating the conditions of the winding 36 km route from the Travessia do Leme ao Pontal.

The Back Wash team’s swim started at 2:45 am on the 21st. In addition to doing the initial part of the swim at night, the swimmers faced a wide variation in water temperature (from 16ºC to 23ºC) and contrary currents in the stretch of São Conrado beach.

But, in contrast to the tough conditions, the swimmers were able to admire all the natural beauty of the route on a beautiful and sunny day in the city of Rio de Janeiro.

The swim was accompanied by the escort boat Ladeia V of Commander Manoel Fernandez and by the LPSA Observer, Adherbal de Oliveira.

He continued, “One fact could not go unmentioned. Guilherme Gomes had his left arm amputated and lost the movements in his left foot as a result of a automobile accident when he was 24 years old. Thus, when completing the swim from Leme to Pontal in the company of the other members, Guilherme wrote his name in the history of the LPSA and the Brazilian open waters as the first swimmer with a physical disability (PwD) to complete the Travessia do Leme ao Pontal, the most beautiful and challenging crossing of Brazil in a relay.

From Leme to Pontal there is nothing like it… in the world!”

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Steven Munatones