Watching from the edge of their seats in a television station in Auckland New Zealand, half-way around the globe from their youngest son, William Trubridge’s parents Linda & David were just as anxious as the rest of the world to see if William could handle the pressure and push through to return from the deep of 102 meters and his 18th world record.

David Trubridge, his father, had this to say:

We were naturally nervous for him, mostly because of how all the media attention he is getting makes it harder for him to remain as totally relaxed as he has to be in order to succeed, but he is incredibly level-headed and if anyone can do it he can.”

And so William Trubridge did it!

In a total time of four minutes and :13 seconds at his home court of Deans Blue Hole, on Long Island in the Bahamas, Trubridge became the first and only human being to ever freedive to 102 meters in the discipline of constant no-fins (CNF), which is the equivalent of an astonishing 335 feet. That’s 20 feet taller than Big Ben and when you consider that Trubridge swam down and back, unassisted with only the air in his lungs, it’s a whopping 670 feet round-trip!

William displaying dedication, determination and depth at Deans Blue Hole. (photo © Daan Verhoeven)
William displaying dedication, determination and depth at Deans Blue Hole. (photo © Daan Verhoeven)

AIDA President, Carla Hanson was on location to witness and judge the big event.

“Leading up to the dive William seemed stressed but definitely still determined. It was clear to me that he felt a great deal of pressure because he did not succeed in the previous 2014 CNF WR attempt. But I knew he had it in the bag as I watched him approach from 20 meters below, swimming strongly towards the surface. He executed a clean surface protocol with two seconds to spare – an amazing dive.”

Coupled with the high expectations of a nation, his sponsor Steinlager, and the hundreds of thousands of well-wishers from around the world, the sheer physical strength and mental focus required of William to have achieved this world record dive to 102 meters unassisted is both unfathomable and incredible. Since the very day of December 2, 2014 when Trubridge came extremely close to success but ultimately failed in his first broadcast attempt to dive to 102m without fins, the purposeful Kiwi has been planning and training intensely, for well over a year, for his redemption. An avid conservationist, William also dedicated his dive to endangered species of marine mammals, the Hector’s & Maui’s Dolphins, as he is a spokesperson for their preservation and was recently featured in a national cartoon addressing the issue for New Zealand.

William Trubridge comes out in defence of the Hector's Dolphin and calls for a bouycott of NZ fish by McDonalds. Rod Emmerson 25/05/16
William Trubridge comes out in defense of the Hector’s Dolphin and calls for a boycott of NZ fish by McDonalds. Rod Emmerson 25/05/16

“One of my greatest motivations in freediving includes the ‘non-human people’ whose only home is New Zealand’s coastal waters, a home where they are still not safe from fishing practices, and slide towards extinction…” shared Trubridge.

I am thrilled to have cracked the record and to have completed a white card dive, after such a long haul. I really felt I was at my peak performance, in terms of conditioning, during the Caribbean Cup competition at the end of May. So I am very grateful to have this massive success so late in the season. Thanks to everyone for all of their tremendous support.”

A world-class athlete, a proven pioneer and a committed advocate of oceans, William Trubridge we salute all of your inspiring achievements & efforts and congratulate you on this amazing 18th world record – well done.

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