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Worlds 2004: Day 6

Day 6 – Monday 9th August 2004

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Monday is a rest day and it seems many team took greast advantage of not having to do a tremendous amount by letting loose a little bit on Sunday night. I can report that spending the evening with the UK team that the next morning several were nursing hangovers. Looking around the pool in the morning showed several other teams looking a little pale as well.

However, performances were strong. The talk of the poolside is Natalia Fernandez from Colombia. A late entrants who missed the Constant Weight subscription deadline is competing only in the static and dynamic pool activites. This in itself isn’t necessarily newsworthy however her 7 minute static breath hold is. If she can manage to beat Lotta Ericsons 6 min 31 time the World Championships could see a World Record fall.

The pool facilities here at University of British Columbia are fantastic. Originally built in 1954 for the Empire (Commonwealth) Games it is an outdoor 50m pool that is bathed in sunlight during most of the day. Whilst the World Championships don’t have the whole pool to themselves during training the Static and Dynamic parts of the competition ono Wednesday and Thursday will have the perfect venue.

In the afternoon the teams were left to their own devices and most could be seen heading into town for shopping or relaxing by the pool.

By the evening everyone was ready to sit down and watch The FreeDiver movie. After seeing the movie in a press showing I was interested to see how the FreeDiving Community would react to it. Unfortunately the assembled freedivers could be heard roaring with laughter several rooms away. Speaking to several after the movie it was clear that they felt FreeDiving was not represented very well in the movie and commentated that despite good underwater footage (the stunt diving was done by the UK team members Hannah Stacey and Zoe Hall) it was let down by an un-realistic view of how competitive FreeDiving is done.

The evening provided some controversy as well when the AIDA President, Sebastien Nagel, announced that the upcoming dives organised by Alki David (writer and director of the movie) would have their AIDA ratification withdrawn. At the same time he explained that he would be pursuing legal action againt Mr. David. The athletes seemed a little bewildered at this and commented that they thought it unfair to withdraw support for the upcoming dives by Carlos Coste, Martin Stepanek and Herbert Nitsch. At the same time they expressed concern that their fee to AIDA would be drawn into a protracted Legal Case. In any case watch this space for news of this continuing controversy.

Tueday is another rest day with Training and a trip to the Vancouver Aquarium. Join us for more news on this tomorrow…

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Stephan Whelan
Stephan Whelan
Stephan is the Founder of His passion for the underwater world started at 8 years old with a try-dive in a hotel pool on holiday that soon formulated into a lifelong love affair with the oceans. In 1996 he set up and has grown the site to be the most popular diving website and community in the world.