The first ever Pan Pacific Freediving Championships has finished today in Brisbane, Australia.
National Records were abundant across the region for many divers, both veterans and many who are newer to the sport.
Ayman Abdin from Egypt set a new national record today and yesterday in both DNF and DYN. He put a whole 75m on the record claiming the National Record at 125m.
Jonathon Chong set a successive third record for the competition with a 146m swim in Dynamic. His girlfriend Valerie Chia set the Singaporean record in the women’s division with 121m, then minutes later competitor Michelle Ooi also from Singapore set it again with 125m. Valerie came back with a super strong swim in the afternoon division finally setting it again at 135m. It was pretty exciting.
New Zealand talent was represented strongly between Ant Williams and Chris Marshall. Chris swimming a massive 230m early in the day and Ant followed narrowly behind with a rock and roll styled 223m in today’s Dynamic category.
Members of the Pan Pacific Region (defined as Asia, Oceania and The Americas by the organizers) are eligible to win the overall competition.
The Pan Pacific Freediving Champion is Alexey Molchonov, Russia. Second place went to Ant Williams, New Zealand and third place to Chris Marshall, also New Zealand.
Kathryn Nevatt from New Zealand provided consistent and impressive swims to take out the first place for the women’s category. In second place Lucja Nowowiejski Australia and in third place Michelle Ooi.
Organizer and president of the Australian Freediving Association Michael Bates said this of the inaugural event and the biggest Freediving event yet to be in Australia.
“So many people from so many countries, I’m so stoked that people came and had a great time, we saw so many national records smashed and we really couldn’t ask for the competition to have gone better. I’m also happy it’s over, so I can have my life back.”
Consensus between athletes and competition volunteers was that Bates courtroom like demeanor and organizational abilities credits him and the Australian Freediving Association.
Bates envisions that the event will travel throughout the region giving athletes in the southern hemisphere the opportunity to compete and be involved in an elite Freediving event. Discussions are in place as to where the next Pan Pacific Championships will be.
You can see Day Three Results below:
The final overall standings are: