Archive for the ‘Water Sports’ Category

World Champion Free-Diver Presumed Dead

Molchanova image:

Natalia Molchanova, 53, arguably the world’s greatest ever free diver has failed to surface after a dinve in the Balearic Sea, near Spain.

Molchanova was diving on Sunday with three others on the coast of Formentera. Speaking with the New York Times her son Alexey said they do not expect to find her alive.

Free diving is a sport and competition in which individuals dive to the greatest possible depths without any breathing aids. Molchanova was diving to a depth of about 40 meters, much less than her word record of 101 metres set in May in Egypt.

Yet reports claim she was diving in an area notorious for its unpredictable currents. The water temperature was around 26 degrees Celsius, but further down this would become colder. Such sudden changes in temperature can possibly shock the body.

When Molchanova failed to surface her fellow divers began searching on their own; when this yielded nothing they called for help. Private boats and the Coast Guard, helicopters and eventually submersible robots were called in. But to no avail.

Molchanova holds 41 world records, has won the world championship in free diving 23 times, and can hold her breath for longer than 9 minutes.

The worldwide community of free divers are in mourning for a woman loved and respected by all.

Mark Hunt Looking to KO Stipe Miocic

Image of Mark Hunt:

UFC rising star Mark ‘the Super Samoan’ Hunt has told reporters of his battle to make the weight-cut before his UFC Adelaide fight against Stipe Miocic.

In the lead up to what may be the biggest fight of his life Hunt must increase his cardio while decreasing his calorie intake and water-load like you wouldn’t believe – up to seven litres a day!

‘There’s always a battle with the weight,” said Hunt. “But I’m a super heavyweight and the UFC’s limit is 120kg.

“But it’s part and parcel of the game really.

“I’m just water loading and then Friday just letting the body piss it out and it (the weight) should come off pretty easily.

“I’ve been drinking seven and a half litres of water a day.”

Hunt is no stranger to drastic weight-cuts. He took his last fight on short notice and had to lose 20 kilos in less than a month. While last year, to make weight for the fight against Roy Nelson in Japan, Hunt was rumoured to have lost seven kilograms in 24 hours!

The Super Samoan then went onto knock Nelson out – still the only man ever to do so.

Hunt is hoping to tip the scales at a trim, taut, and terrific 120.2 kilograms – the heavyweight limit.

On Thursday he was confident, saying: “The weight cut is going good. I’m about 125 kg right now, but I’m good; I should be on weight.”

Mark Hunt will have his hands full against Miocic, an experienced mixed martial artist with a strong wrestling pedigree.

But Hunt is keeping his plan simple: “I don’t give a rats if he’s King Kong or whatever. I’m just going to knock him out. The win is what I aim for every fight, but knocking people out is my job.”

It’s a job he is apparently well suited for as Hunt has put to sleep a who’s-who of the heavyweight division, culminating with the previously invincible Roy Nelson.

“I don’t really worry about what he’s got or what anyone else has got. I don’t care; I’m just interested in what I have and what I can bring to the table.

“So I’m bringing the beer and he’s bringing the sausages. Then I’m going to pour the beer all over him and knock his arse out.”

Hunt and Miocic headline a stellar line-up of local and international fighters.

Swimmer Aims for North Pacific Crossing


French endurance swimmer Ben Lecomte has set himself the incredible goal of swimming from Tokyo to San Francisco this summer.

He will swim eight hours each day. During this time he will endure hardships like jelly fish, sharks, sunburn, ocean currents, and the Great Pacific Garbage Patch – a floating raft of debris the size of Texas.

Lecomte has previously swum across the Atlantic Ocean. That took him 73 days. This latest 8851 kilometre challenge will, he believes, test him to his limits.

Every moment of the swim is scheduled. “The last thing you want to do,” he told from his Dallas, Texas home, “is not know what you’re going to do with your mind.

“The first hour I relive any event, like a birthday party. The second hour is math exercise like counting or dividing numbers.

“The third one I try to visualise or imagine a place I have never been to, like Australia … I engage all my sense to disassociate my mind from my body.”

Mr Lecomte expects the ultra-marathon swim to take around six months. He says he is doing it to raise awareness of ocean degradation through human waste products.

“We want to show people what is around because 80 per cent of the plastic you find in the ocean comes from land. What you see on the surface [of the Great Pacific Patch] is only 15 per cent because 70 per cent is in the water column and the other 15 per cent is on the bottom.”

Mr Lecomte said that footage of his journey will be streamed live on social media.

He is expected to consume a staggering 8000 caleries each day. To fuel himself he will consume for large meals when not swimming and liquid meals while in the water.

But he I wary of health issues like tendonitits. The body is not built for six months of constant exercise.

Just like the ocean is not built to be a garbage dump.

Todd Carney Wins Case for Unfair Dismissal


It seems you get the justice you pay for.

NRL tribunal chairman Ian Callinan QC has found in favour of Todd Carney, ruling his dismissal from the Cronulla sharks was unfair.

It was found Carney was not given adequate legal opportunity to plead his case before the Cronulla Sharks board.

The ruling opens a tiny window of opportunity for Carney’s re-admission to the NRL.

Should Carney wish to pursue a return his next step would be to lodge an unfair dismissal claim with the Industrial Relations commission. This would most likely be as expensive as it will be drawn-out. The kind of case every lawyer loves.

Chairman of the Cronulla Sharks, Damian Keogh, said the club accepted the decision of the NRL appeals committee. But he was quick to add that even despite the team’s recent poor performance they had no intention of reinstating their playmaker.

“The big oversight was that someone needed to check that the process being followed was correct,” he said to The Sunday Telegraph.

“What’s important to remember here is that it’s not a question of the facts. It’s a question of the process. But the reality of the situation is the decision would likely have been the same.

“I wouldn’t’ rule out Todd Carney returning to the NRL one day. But from my point of view there has been a lot of water that has flowed under the bridge since last June.”

Carney now plays for the English Premier League team the Catalan Dragons. He is currently sidelined with broken ribs.

Brazilian Surf Champion Shot Dead

Ricardo dos Santos

Brazilian professional surfer Ricardo dos Santos has lost his life after being shot several times in the stomach and chest outside his beachside home. The 24-year-old suffered a perforated lung and kidney and died after four operations failed to stop his bleeding. It is still not entirely sure how the shooting occurred but Brazilian media have reported that police have arrested a young man and his 17-year-old brother. The older man has been identified as an off-duty police officer – 25 year-old military police officer Luis Paulo Mota Brentano – who claims he shot dos Santos in self-defence and that his behaviour was justified. His brother alleges that two men, one being dos Santos, threatened them with knives near Embaú Guard beach, Brazil.

Ricardo dos Santos was a popular personality who made waves on the world surfing scene in 2012 when he eliminated fellow competitors Taj Burrow, Jordy Smith and Kelly Slater at the Billabong pro competition in Tahiti – on the notorious Teahupo?o reef break. He also picked up the Andy Irons award for Most Committed Performance and in 2013 was awarded The Wave of The Winter for an impressive barrel he caught at Hawaii’s Pipeline. Fans and fellow surfers alike have gathered at Pipeline in honour and remembrance of their friend and hero, a man described as “one of the greatest barrel riders of his short time” (Kelly Slater). Fellow surfer and good friend, Adriano de Souza, posted on Facebook saying he had lost a “great friend…a cheerful person, good hearted and good about life”. Brazilian surfer, Gabriel Medina asked “Why does this happen to good people?” and wrote that dos Santos was “always helping others, smiling from ear to ear everyday”.

Dos Santos’ passing is all the more tragic given his own personal efforts to curb violence in the Embaú Guard area of Brazil. In 2011 he posted on social media imploring his local community to unite together and”put an end to this farce”. He was bothered that people did not value the beauty and purity of the area he called home. The fact that Ricardo’s killer was a member of the police force who are meant to protect its citizens is a sad reflection of Brazil’s internal social and often violent problems.

Ricardo dos Santos passed away the day after being shot after many operations and 40 litres worth of blood transfusions, some of which were donated after fellow surfers posted online asking specifically for blood donations (due to a national shortage of blood in Brazil). The tragedy is a senseless loss of life highlighting the growing number of murders yearly in Brazil, a beautiful yet scary place to be.


The Me Clinic – Cosmetic surgery for face, body and skin


Courntey Hancock & Liz Pluimers Set for Showdown in Newcastle

Ironwoman Courtney Hancock has opened up about her rivalry with Northcliff club compatriot Liz Pluimers.

Both women are premier athletes in one of the world’s most gruelling sports: The Nutri-Grain Iron Woman Series. But personal differences have produced deep divisions between the two.

But their antagonism has fuelled each woman to beat the other.

Hancock has won the crown three times, including last season. Pluimer has won the title twice. And neither wants to finish behind the other.

Currently Pluimers has an impressive 10-point lead going into this week’s final round in Newcastle. A win here would see her tie up the series and even her title count against Hancock.

“We have different beliefs on how we do things,” Hancock told the Daily Telegraph. “And I don’t think we got along from the start and it has always been that way.

“We have the same love for the sport, but we don’t talk

‘It drives me when I’m racing, because Liz is a great athlete and I want to get out there and beat her.

“I think that drive also helps me go to limits I haven’t been to before.”

Hancock is starring in a Nutri-Grain Sports Stars Challenge on Channel 9 in 2015. She has spent a lot of time filming the show, but refuses to use it as an excuse for her recent form slump (now 6th on the ladder).

“It’s definitely hurt my racing this year, but everything happens for a reason and you’ll see me return next year a bit more focused.

“That’s why I want to finish the season in Newcastle with a strong result and hopefully a win.

Fleet Firms Before Sydney to Hobart

Sydney to Hobart Yacht Race. Image:

Open water yachting experts are saying the super maxis are not sure-things for this year’s prestigious overall honours in this year’s Sydney to Hobart.

While the battle will be on amongst the multi-million dollar, state-of the-art, ivy league super maxis for line honours, little yachts like Sean Langman’s Maluka are in with a real chance at winning on handicap.

Maluka is a gorgeous Huon pine 30-footer, the smallest in the fleet of 117. Love & War, an Oregon and maple wooden labour of love is not much larger, but has actually moved into favouritism against her larger rivals.

Langman, skipper of the 84 year-old Maluka is thrilled. His destiny is in his hands and those of the “weather gods.”

Love & War (a baby by comparison) is just hitting her straps at 41 years-old. She has previous wins in 1974, 1978, and 2006; and so cannot be discounted.

Curiously, it seems the weather is predicted to favour slower boats. Strong winds have been forecast to fill the sails of those at the tail end of the fleet, well after the super maxis have crossed settled in Hobart.

Other bolters to look out for are James Cameron’s 35foot Luna Sea, Ed Psaltis’ 40-foot Ariel, The 38 footer The Goat and the Wild Rose, coming in at 43 feet.

Size, age, sail area, and level of crew expertise all factor into the handicapping system applied to the race entrants.

It’s going to be a magic race!

Greg Bird Shames Himself AGAIN!

Greg Bird does it again. Image:

Greg Bird has become the fifth Titan in eleven months to be arrested for alcohol related offences. This latest comes as he was seen urinating on or near a marked police car in Byron Bay.

Bird was celebrating with confessed drug cheat Paul Gallen, Josh Morris and others on Sunday after getting married. Several witnesses saw him leave the pub at 7:45 pm and stagger into the hotel car park. Whereupon he did what footballers do best and made a spectacle of himself.

Bird fronted the media after his Monday court appearance. When asked about the incident he said, “”It’s put a dampener on or wedding weekend.”

One can only wonder if he meant this as a pun or sly jibe; or if the Titans’ co-captain simply didn’t understand the subtext the word ‘dampener’ brings with it.

Greg Bird has a long rap sheet already. He was accused of glassing his girlfriend in the face and then lying and attempting to blame his flatmate to cover it up. He has racked up numerous alcohol related misdemeanours. And he has an atrocious judiciary record for on-field infractions.

The Titans’ management wouldn’t be drawn on any further censure that may be applied to bird.. Titans boss, Graeme Annesly said, “We have the option to consider anything that is appropriate under the terms of the contract, but I don’t want to forecast what might happen.

As for Bird’s new bride – she may be disappointed, but at least she wasn’t glassed in the face.

Sydney to Hobart Attracts Cream of the Crop

The 70th anniversary of the Sydney to Hobart yacht race will boast the largest line-up in the race’s history. Toeing the starting line will be five of the biggest, fastest (and most expensive) yachts in the world.

While the number of entrants won’t come near the race record of 371, set at the 50th anniversary in 1994; the 119 boats already exceeds the numbers in recent years.

Organisers have had to install a third tier on the start line. Without it the free-for-all for position can (and has) caused catastrophic collisions.

Perpetual Loyal. Image:

Perpetual Loyal. Image:

Anthony Bells 100-footer, Perpetual Loyal, is said to be taking on defending line honours champion Wild Oats. Also into the mix come Ragamuffin, Rio 100, and the newly built American yacht Comache. These five will be slicing through the water the Sydney water on Boxing Day and racing seriously for Hobart.

Mark Richards, skipper of Wild Oats and winner of seven line honours, said he was thrilled with the level and amount of competition. The boats are fast, the crews well trained and the skippers wily. It should be a great race.

Also declaring its intentions is Martin Power’ Bacardi (record holder for most Sydney to Hobarts raced), the 41 year-old Love & War, and the 80 year-old Maluka – a 30-foot tub, clearly the oldest and smallest vessel in the fleet.

Entrants hail from New Zealand, the Cayman Islands, the UK, Poland, Germany and the US.

Wild Oats xi. Image:

Wild Oats xi. Image:

Australian Kayaker Fails Random Drug Test

Tate Smith. Image:

Tate Smith. Image:

Gold medalling kayaker Tate Smith has failed a random drugs test.

The 32 year-old Gold Coaster is understood to have returned the positive test in a training camp in Hungary in July of this year.

Smith told News Corp he had recently begun a new supplements regimen and may have taken a prohibited substance accidentally.

Should Smith be found guilty of breaching the WADA prohibited substances code he will become Australia’s first Olympic gold medallist stripped of his medal for doping. Smith will be handed a standard two-year suspension from competitive kayaking.

But it doesn’t end there.

Initially Smith’s tests from the London Games returned a negative result. But British Olympic medical staff will now conduct a retrospective analysis of his frozen samples.

Should these also return a positive result not only Smith, but the entire four-man crew, may be stripped of their medals.

Greg Doyle, chief of Australian canoeing said, “Australian canoeing is unable to make any comment regarding matters that may be with ASADA until such time as the matter is finalised, in order to provide fairness to all persons involved.”

ASADA released a similar statement refusing to discuss their investigation.

Should he be found guilty, Smith will join fellow canoeist and Gold Coast Nathan Baggaley in being banned from competitive sport. Baggaley won two silver medals at the Athens games in 2004.