It was a day of records for the eighth annual Whidbey Adventure Swim Sunday, June 23, at Langley’s Seawall Park.
The two-race event set a record for participants, filling all 100 available slots for the first time, according to race director Teresa Forsyth.
The other record was set in the water. Seattle’s David Dahl completed the 1.2-mile course in 26:28.5, breaking the previous mark of 26:53 set by Tacoma’s Chad Hagedorn in 2014. Dahl finished well ahead of the runner-up, Andrew White (28:49.1), despite 55-degree weather, choppy conditions and racing in salt water for the first time.
“It was a little rough heading out,” he said. “At the turn-around it was better — well, faster.”
Dahl, who trains in Lake Washington, has been competing in open water swims for five years, all in fresh water.
“It’s a little different,” he added about swimming in salt water, which he said irritated his nose and mouth. The annoyances, however, did not keep him from setting the new record.
Elizabeth Lucco finished fourth overall and first among females in the 1.2-mile race in 32:05.5.
Laurie Bauder won the 2.4-mile swim by more than a minute with a time of 58:55. Eric Dolven was second at 1:00.38; his fifth top-five finish, including wins in 2013 and 2014.
The yearly event is hosted by the South Whidbey Parks and Aquatics Foundation, a nonprofit organization started in 2009 and dedicated to making parks and aquatic activities accessible to all.
Additionally, the foundation has funded swimming lessons for local youth. The foundation’s long-term goal is opening a community pool on South Whidbey.
Forsyth said there were a few minor hiccups (“there’s always something that happens”) but “for the most part, it went really well.”
“It was windy and colder than we expected,” she added, “but it was a great race, a great year.”
The race is the first in a series of five Pacific Northwest Association of Masters Swimmers open water events this summer. Next up is the Fat Salmon race Saturday, July 13, at Madison Park Beach on Lake Washington.
1.2-mile Race Results
Top 10 overall (out of 53 finishers): 1, David Dahl, 26:28.5; 2, Andrew White; 3, Ian McCurdy, 31:47.1; 4, Elizabeth Lucco, 32:05.5; 5, Tani Stenfjord, 32:09.1; 6, Darren Van Pelt, 32:10.5; 7, Wayne Methner, 32:14.4; 8, Martha Layzer, 32:20.4; 9, Richard Ennis, 33:11.5; 10, Amanda Cross, 33:25.6.
Next five males: 12, Scott Matthews, 34:08.2; 21, Joseph Hampel, 37:56.3; 22, Michael Meluskey, 38:34.2; 25, Ben Shorr, 39:02.8; 41, Gary Winans, 47:35.3.
Next five females: 11, Mary Lippold, 34:05.4; 13, Angela Williamson, 35:01.2; 14, Gloria Dillan, 35:57.9; 15, Tamara Lund, 36:18; 16, Heidi Skrzyek, 36:18.8.
2.4-mile Race Results:
Top 10 overall (out of 34 finishers): 1, Laurie Bauder, 58:55; 2, Eric Dolven, 1:00:38; 3, Pete Gillis, 1:04.18; 4, Stephen Jones, 1:05:16; 5, Fiona Clauson, 1:07:25; 6, Sheldon Sweeney, 1:04:45; 7, Stephen Freeborn, 1:08:07; 8, Bethany Mitchell, 1:08.16; 9, Amanda Winans, 1:09:27; 10, Christopher Hasse, 1:10:04.
Next five males: 11, John De Wit, 1:10:11; 14, Roger Hicks, 1:13.46; 17, Gianluca D’Alessandro, 1:15:59; 19, Oscar Brain, 1:16:29; 20, Jeffrey Crombie, 1:17:52.