Monday, May 27, 2024

Vertical Blue 2023 Day 6: Kateryna Sadurska, Alenka Artnik Set New World Records

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Day 6 of Vertical Blue at Dean’s Blue Hole in the Bahamas saw two new world records set.

Katerina Sadurska Dedicates Her WR Dive To Ukraine

Katerina Sadurska from Ukraine reached the pinnacle of her long journey to be in the world’s premier freediving competition.

The 31-year-old former synchronized swimming European champion and Olympian didn’t think she would be able to attend the competition – the high costs, the difficult logistics, the dread of seeing conflicting opponents.

Yet somehow, despite these myriad challenges, with surgical precision and a well of strength Sadurska executed a perfect, world-record-setting, Constant Weight No Fins (CNF) dive to 76m/249ft in a dive time of 3mins 11secs.

Kateryna Sadurska at Vertical Blue 2023 (Photo credit: Daan Verhoeven)
Kateryna Sadurska (Photo credit: Daan Verhoeven)

Sadurksa said:

“I came to Vertical Blue to be heard – this was my main goal. I dedicate my dive to all the Ukrainians who are fighting for freedom on every level, but especially our Armed Forces who put their lives on the line to defend our country and give the rest of us an opportunity to live our lives – and who provide me the chance to continue my training process at home, in Kharkiv.”

Event organizer William Trubridge had this to say about Sadurska’s dive:

“Kateryna has that combination of power and efficiency that is vital in the no-fins discipline. You can tell she’s from a swimming background, but she’s worked hard to convert that base condition into performance in the vertical dimension also. I was very impressed, and I’m also looking forward to seeing her improve on this depth in the future, as she definitely has potential for more!”

Attempting a world record is no small feat, let alone when the meaning of your performance is coupled with inspiring a nation. Sadurska added:

“Today I was calm, I was sure I could do my dive – I’m really happy! I really want to make more positive news, so it will give more energy for our army and I would really like to thank them.”

Sadurska is now the deepest female athlete in the world in the freediving discipline many call the “purest” of the sport. This is her first world record.

Check out the video of Sadurska’s record-setting dive below.

Kateryna Sadurska of Ukraine WORLD RECORD at Vertical Blue 2023 by Garmin -- a CNF dive to 76m

Alenka Artnik Sets New CWTB World Record

Slovenia’s Alenka Artnik added to her trophy case with a world record dive of her own to 109m/358ft in the Constant Weight with Bifins (CWTB) discipline.

Artnik’s Day 6 dive also extends the National Record she set in that discipline on Day 3 of the competition.

Three National Records Set

Three more national records were set on Day 6, two of them by women.

* The USA’s Enchante Gallardo dove to 93m/305ft in the Constant Weight with Monofin (CWT) discipline.
* Belgium’s Marine Simonis dove to 63m/207ft in the CNF discipline.
* Taiwan’s Wen Hsiang Huang dove to 74m/243ft in the CNF discipline.

Continuing Challenges

Not everyone had perfect dives on Day 6, though.

* Russia’s Alexey Molchanov, who was gunning for a men’s 103m/338ft world record dive of his own in the CNF discipline, suffered a blackout on his way up at the 30m/98ft point and got a red card. Also, given the depth of his blackout, AIDA safety rules won’t allow him to continue diving in this year’s competition.
* South Africa’s Talya Davidoff was trying to add to her National Record trophy case with a dive to 56m/184ft in the CNF discipline, but got a red card after video review.
* Turkey’s Sahika Ercumen earned a yellow card for turning back early at 78m/256ft on her 95m/312ft CWT attempt.
* Japan’s Hanako Hirose got a yellow after turning back at 89m/292ft on her 101m/331ft CWT attempt.
* Peru’s Juan Valdivia received a yellow card after turning back at 41m/134.5ft on his 60m/197ft Free Immersion (FIM) attempt.

Check out the full results and the video replay of all the day’s dives below.

(Featured Image credit: Daan Verhoeven. Additional Reporting by Francesca Koe in the Bahamas)

Vertical Blue 2023 Day 6 results

Vertical Blue 2023 by Garmin - Day 6
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