Redmond uses mantras of his children while tackling the channels around the world. “I use anything that gives me a mental edge. Marathon swimming is about as close as you can get to death while you are alive here on Earth. You lose all sense of perception while you are swimming in such difficult conditions,” said the swimmer who typically traverses channels at a 48-52 strokes per minute pace.
2012 World Open Water Swimming Man of the Year Nomination
Redmond was nominated for the 2012 World Open Water Swimming Man of the Year award. His World Open Water Swimming Association nomination reads, Few have endured and enjoyed a year like Stephen Redmond in the annals of marathon swimming. A man so driven, so committed to achieving the Oceans Seven that he inspired his community and moved a nation. Through his tenacious assault on the world’s most difficult channels, he laid everything he had on the line – money, reputation, family and friends. While Mother Nature was anything but maternalistic, he battled every obstacle known to open water swimmers. Failure greeted him nearly 50% of the time during 2012, but he eventually wrestled success from angry seas. His triumphant swims across the Cook Strait in New Zealand, the Molokai Channel in Hawaii, the Tsugaru Channel in Japan, and around Fastnet Rock in Ireland have made Redmond an Irish icon. For his risk-taking spirit, for his relentlessly adventurous soul that enabled him to achieve the Oceans Seven, for his humble acceptance of the unexpected and of success, Stephen Redmond is a worthy nominee for the 2012 WOWSA Open Water Swimming Man of the Year.
2012 World Open Water Swimming Performance of the Year Nomination
Redmond’s Tsugaru Channel Crossing was nominated for the 2012 World Open Water Swimming Performance of the Year award. His World Open Water Swimming Association nomination reads, Do the four-leaf clovers exist in the open water? They do in the realm of Stephen Redmond. Rarely has a man, his support team and his larger community around him have been so tested and so focused in overcoming adversity in the open water world. His first two attempts at swimming the Tsugaru Channel, his final leg of the unprecedented Oceans Seven, were thwarted by currents and tides. Dejected, he returned home to regroup, re-energize, and re-plot his strategy. His third attempt – that started so promising – was suddenly cut short by unexpectedly strong winds. Depression was never more evident on a swimmer. The broad shoulders of the Irish icon drooped like tree branches heavily laden with snow. But he was not prepared to return home with a fourth failure. As the weather broke on his last day in Japan, his faith was severely tested, but he was never without hope. His love of the challenge and his luck on the final day was what he needed to complete the Tsugaru Channel in 12 hours 45 minutes. For his commitment to the cause, for his deeply held faith, for his humility in the face of fame and courage in face of angry seas, Stephen Redmond’s four attempts at the Tsugaru Channel are collectively a worthy nominee for the 2012 WOWSA Open Water Swimming Performance of the Year.