Great Chesapeake Bay Swim Recommendations:
Generally a very favorable day for the swim with low winds
predicted. Be aware if winds do increase, sustained south
winds in the 8+ knot range in combination with the flood tide will
contribute to larger swells and chop from right to left as you
cross the bay. Swells and surface currents will be stronger in
the main channel particularly if winds pick up speed. Our
recommendation is to swim to the right span as you enter the
spans and approach the main channel. Try to maintain a right
or southern line as you cross the bay. Keep off the main
supports by at least ten yards to avoid being caught in a back
eddy. If you drift north, wait until you approach the exit of the
spans before trying to make the cross back south to the exit.
Currents will be less as you approach the shallower water.
Remember you have +/-1000 meters to go to the finish once
you clear the bridge. Stay off the jetty by at least 40 yards and in
line with the finish sign to avoid rebound wave and currents.
Have fun and a great race.
From the start, warm up, pass the jetty and as you enter the spans, hug the turn,
and swim to the south span (right). The tide will be flowing right to left, south to
north. Be cautious to note that the current will grow stronger as you near and
enter the Main Channel, approximately 1.5 miles from the start. Keep in mind that
the wind will affect the current, lessening it or making it stronger. It also may
create chop and some swells. Note wind direction before the race. Maintain a
distance of at least 10 meters from the large support structures so you do not get
caught in any back eddy currents. You may be swimming at an angle into the
current to maintain a straight line. Hold your streamlined body position and keep
your head down as much as possible. Think of yourself as a long sharp boat slicing
through the water. As you clear the main channel, you will be about 400 m less
than half way.
Your next target is the East Channel bridge structure. It is during this middle 1.6
mile portion of the race that you must maintain your pace, stroke technique and
positive mental focus. Use the tools you practiced during your training. When in
doubt, count 100 strokes, making each one as perfectly as you can. The longer I
swim, the stronger I feel. Periodic sighting is important because you will continue
to need to adjust for the flood current.
The beginning of East Channel structure is at 3 miles, the end at 3.3 miles. It is in this
area or about 70-90 minutes into the race that you may consider eating a gel. The
current should be steady so work your way back to the southern span (right side)
if you have drifted north and maintain a course until you exit the spans. At that
point you have approx. .75 miles to go. Once you get to the rocks, you have to
maintain a distance that is a swimmable depth or about 40 yards from the rocks.
Swimming is faster than running (in the water). You should be getting a clear view
of the large finish sign and the overwhelming sense of satisfaction will be flooding
your body. Bring it home strong and congratulate yourself as you step on land.
If you have any questions, email me at firstname.lastname@example.org. I will try to
get back to you before 11am Sunday morning. Have a great race and have fun!
|The Standard for Open Water Swimming