This September (8th to 16th) saw the biggest freediving World Championships so far. To celebrate the 20th Anniversary of AIDA, freediving came home to Nice, France the birthplace of AIDA all those years ago. 120 athletes were supported by a safety and logistics crew of well over 100 people.
The team this year consisted of Georgina Miller, Liv Philip (captain), and newcomer Beci Ryan for the women, and Gary McGrath, John Moorcroft and Tim Money for the men. We also had the support of two reserves, James Cluskey and Gary Lowe. Sara Campbell was also there teaching free yoga and meditation to the athletes.
The team was very kindly once again sponsored by top Italian wetsuit manufacturer Elios Sub (www.eliossub.com) and team kit was generously provided by British dive fashion brand SevenTenths (www.seventenths.com). The team is also grateful for sponsorship from Oceanic (www.oceanicuk.com), for providing us with amazing new dive computers by Aeris and lava core wear. This company is in exciting talks with the BFA’s sponsorship officer, James Cluskey for a longterm mutually beneficial relationship and we look forward to being able to announce exciting news in the very near future on this front.
With challenging conditions both in and out of the water a special mention should be made to Gary McGrath for his impressive personal best of 68m in Constant Weight. Tim Money also managed a new personal best in Constant weight of 60m. John Moorcroft who, after over 30 years in the sport is also still pushing his depths to never-before reached numbers – 67m in competition! Beci also did amazingly well, having started the sport this year, she entered the competition with a spirit of courage and endeavour and, despite very unfamiliar and stressful surroundings for a beginner, also delivered personal bests in all three disciplines! In The pool we saw another personal best in dynamic from Georgina Miller of 133m, she also made 6th place overall in the women’s static, Tim Money also delivered a very strong 169m. Liv, George, and Tim are seasoned athletes who also delivered consistent and strong performances, both competing and coaching the less experienced members of the team, which is a tall challenge at such a big and important competition.
A strong captain in Liv Philip, with support, coaching and fabulous photography by Daan Verhoeven and coaching and general care from Stavros Kastrinakis made a difficult event a success.