The BFA committee is pleased to announce the final date and venue for the British Pool Championships 2008. The event is to be held at Brockwell Lido (South London) on Saturday 28th June 2008. This will be the first time that the British Championships have been held outdoors in the UK. For more information and to register, please visit our competitions section.
The British Freediving Association is proud to announce a new UK record in the Men’s Dynamic discipline. On Saturday 23rd February 2008 at the 3rd German Indoor Championship in Static and Dynamic Apnea held in Berlin, Martin Macnaughton completed a performance of 178m. The new record beats the previous record of 156m, which had been the oldest of all British records, set by Dave King in 2004. The discipline of Dynamic Apnea involves the athlete travelling horizontally to cover the greatest distance on a single breath.
The record, on its own is a remarkable achievement. However three facts make this record outstanding. Macnaughton, who lives and trains in Copenhagen, has only been freediving since Autumn 2007, which makes him a relative novice. Secondly, Macnaughton’s dynamic dive is the highest result for anyone in their debut AIDA competition, an achievement that has escaped all the current top freedivers. Finally, Martin did this all whilst ill with a heavy cold.
Martin rounded off his debut with an impressive 5 minute 32 second static breath hold, securing him 4th place in the competition overall. BFA Committee member Ben Noble, who was one of four judges attending said “Martin’s performance was very strong, clean and clearly looked like he had more to give. A fantastic surprise for British freediving”.
The Berlin German Indoor Championship is part of the annual German Championship and is the 10th Berlin Master Cup. It attracts top athletes from throughout Europe to compete in Static and Dynamic.
In recent months British freediving has seen a resurgence, with national records for Dynamic and Dynamic No-Fins falling in the last month, and also the meteoric rise of triple world record holder and 2007 Constant Weight World Champion Sara Campbell.
The British Freediving Association is pleased to announce a new UK record in the Men’s Dynamic Apnea ‘No-fins’ discipline. On Thursday 7th February 2008, at The New Malden Centre, London, Alan Barber completed a performance of 127 metres. The new record beats the previous record of 120 metres, set by Danny Coope in 2006. Dynamic Apnea without fins is one of the most technically difficult of the pool-based breath-hold disciplines. It requires precise technique and fine-tuned buoyancy underwater.
Alan, 35, had been freediving for precisely one year with his freediving club NoTanx, upon setting the record. As well as progressing to a record-breaking performance so quickly, amazingly, Alan is able to swim further without fins than with.
He also was able to combine this achievement with raising over £1,000 for his favourite charity, ‘The Brook’ which is concerned with animal welfare.
Alan has been coached at his club by Adrian Hamilton and Marcus Greatwood.
Mark Harris, also known as ‘The Blue Lightning’, sets UK freediving records in Free Immersion and Variable Weight.
Mark set the new British Variable Weight record to 80 metres, 15 metres deeper than the previous record set by Paul Whincup in 2005! He chose to pull himself back to the surface by using his arms only, despite having planned a Free Immersion record attempt on the same day! Indeed, not half an hour later he pulled himself down the rope again. Unfortunately he lost his nose clip shortly after leaving the surface, but he chose to carry on with one hand holding his nose, pulling himself down with one arm only, to reach 64 metres below the surface and back up for a very clean Free Immersion record.
On the same day, Ben Noble, also member of the BFA committee, became the deepest Australian freediver by breaking no less than 3 national records: a Free Immersion dive to 50 metres, a Variable Weight dive to 72 metres and 80 in the No-limits discipline!
Mark and Ben both are members of the BFA committee. On top of the huge amount of work required by their roles, Mark also manages to organize courses and training sessions for the Richmond freediving club and Ben works for the Australian AIDA and is a forum mentor on DeeperBlue.
Congratulations to both of them! More details and gossip can be found in this DeeperBlue thread.
The British Freediving Association is pleased to announce a new UK Record in Constant Weight for David King. On the 1st November 2007, David achieved a depth of 78 metres, whereby he had to swim using a single monofin to that depth and back again. This took place at the 4th Individual World Championship in Sharm El Sheikh, Egypt. The previous record holder Alun George, had set the depth to 76 metres in 2004.
The British Freediving Association is pleased to announce a new UK Record in Free Immersion for Marcus Greatwood. On the 19th October 2007, Marcus achieved a depth of 61 metres, whereby he had to pull himself on a submerged line to that depth and back again. This took place at the ‘Triple Depth’ competition, in Dahab, Egypt. The previous record holder had set the depth to 60 metres in 2005.
‘Triple Depth’ international freediving competition, Dahab, Egypt:
Londoner Sara Campbell has rescued British Sport from the doldrums this weekend, with a spectacular coup of 3 World Freediving records, over a 48 hour period. This is nothing short of amazing, and has knocked the world freediving community sideways.
On Friday the 19th of October 2007, Sara surprised everyone in the opening discipline of Free Immersion when she reached a depth of 81 metres, pulling down a measured line using arms only. In doing so, she relieved Russian freediving stalwart Natalia Molchanova of her previous record of 80 metres.
Just one day later, spectators were staggered to find that Campbell had posted a depth of no less than 90 metres for Constant Weight, where the athlete must descend using swim fin(s). This was viewed as a gross over-estimate for the diminutive newcomer, who has been freediving for less than one year. With utter disbelief, the audience were shown just what grit and determination can result in, when Sara returned to the surface with a depth tag. Not only had she beaten the previous World record holder Mandy-Rae Cruikshank, but had done so by an extra 2 metres.
On Sunday the 21st of October, the final day of the competition, there were no surprises that Sara would aim deep for another world record, this time in Constant Weight No-Fins. As the name suggests, a swim to the depths with no assistance of any kind, with Nataila Molchanova again the title holder with 55 metres. Sara reached a metre deeper to beat this, setting the new CNF world record to 56 metres.
Sara Campbell, 35, British freediver and triple world record holder, has now become a World Champion in the Constant Weight depth discipline.
At the Individual Freediving World Championships held this week in Sharm el Sheikh on the Red Sea, Sara secured a Gold Medal for Great Britain with an 88 metre dive in Constant Weight.
Sara’s main rival, Russian Nathalia Molchanova, who has held World Records in all six competitive disciplines in the past two years, was aiming to reclaim her World Record title at the competition and again take home the Gold Medal. However, her announcement of 95 metres, an increase of nine metres on her former World Record in the same discipline, proved to be too much for the woman the sport has for a long time considered unbeatable.
Sara shares her world freediving champion status with Briton Sam Still, who won the static apnea discipline in 2005.
Alan Barber was honoured by the Royal Borough of Kingston Upon Thames for his exceptional achievements in Apnea, including his 202m Dynamic Record.
At the annual Sports awards, 15th October, Alan (who represented GBR in Denmark this year) was awarded Senior Sports Achiever by The Mayor of Kingston.
Marcus Greatwood (Alan’s coach) was also nominated for his fantastic work within NoTanx Club. Marcus’ plan to get Freediving recognised by the UK Sports Council takes another step forward.