The publishers of Marie Clare magazine have voted on and published the “8 Greatest Moments for Women in Sports.” I rushed off to the website hoping beyond hope that Chloë McCardel’s historic longest ever unassisted swim would make the 8. After all, she swam 77.3 miles without any assistance, wearing only a standard textile swimsuit, goggles and one swim cap. She never touched her support boat. She never had help putting on any shark-deterring suit or creams, she never had help eating or drinking, she never got on her support boat due to sharks or lightening. She swam straight for 41 hours, 21 minutes.
Alas, no such luck. The folks at Marie Clare magazine did include a female open water swimmer in their list of 8 greatest moments for women in sports. Sadly, that woman is Diana Nyad.
Let’s get one thing straight. DN did an amazing thing, both in the water, and in the field of logistics. She did spend an incredibly long time in the water, 53-something hours. She did swim for most of that time, or all that time. Who the hell knows; she didn’t have an impartial observer. But I do believe she spent the vast majority, probably 40+ hours, of her swim actually in the water. If she spent the entire 53+ hours, then she’s probably done the longest assisted swim, or one of the longest. Who the hell knows; she didn’t have an impartial observer & her swim documentation is seriously lacking.
But to put DN in the same list with the likes of Billy Jean King, Nadia Comaneci and Mo’ne Davis is to lessen the accomplishments of the other seven. And why did MC put DN in that list? Crappy journalism, certainly. It takes work to actually read up on the sport of marathon swimming, then researching the spirit of marathon swimming and what that means, the rules, the people. It is much easier to simply search for amazing female swimmers. Why didn’t they find McCardel? Why not Janet Evans and her amazing 800m in 1988 [link Youtube video…ignore the hokey music, but look at her swim!]?
As if you need anymore evidence to their crappy journalism, check out some of these doozies that the editor didn’t catch:
Who could you forget Nyad?
…San Antoni Spurs are so effing lucky.
…she made that ocean her beotch.
This is what passes for journalism nowadays. Oy.