The World Open Water Swimming Performance of the Year is meant to honor efforts and swims – successful or not, short or long – that (1) best embody the spirit of open water swimming, (2) are representative of the sense of adventure, tenacity and perseverance that open water swimmers are known for, and (3) have most positively influenced the world of open water swimming.
Her nomination from the World Open Water Swimming Association reads,
“Haley Anderson’s road from swimming in lakes for fun in northern California to just missing out on a gold medal by 4 tenths of a second at the 2012 London Olympics was filled years of hard work punctuated with infectious joy and humble appreciation for all her opportunities. With a permanent smile on her expressive face, Anderson stood on the starting pontoon at the Olympics with confidence and boundless joy. Nerves and pressure were not part of the package. She embodies the purity of sport: she prepared well, believed in herself, raced fairly, and enjoyed the competition. With a fundamental sweetness and DNA shaped by a well-grounded swimming family, the Olympic medalist is a role model and the ideal teammate whose escalation to the highest echelon in elite open water swimming was rocket-like. For her silver medal performance on the sport’s most pressure-packed stage, for her sense of sportsmanship, for her tremendous growth and improvement throughout this Olympic year, Haley Anderson’s Olympic swim is a worthy nominee for the 2012 WOWSA Open Water Swimming Performance of the Year.”
The nominations are meant to recognize and honor some of the best swims that the global open water swimming world offers. Reducing the number of nominees to 15 was extraordinarily difficult due to the incredible efforts and exploits of thousands of women in the sport. Extreme swimmers, disabled swimmers, ice swimmers, marathon swimmers, professional swimmers, coaches, administrators, pilots, and swimmers from all walks of life thoroughly impressed their peers, the public and the media with their open water swimming exploits throughout 2012.
The 2009 recipient was the Cayman Islands’ Andrew Smiley who completed the RCP Tiburon Mile in San Francisco, California. The 2010 recipient was the 202-mile relay swim by the Ventura Deep Six that swam down the coast of California. The 2011 recipient was Tunisia’s Nejib Belhedi who swam the 1400K Swim Across Tunisia.
The 2012 WOWSA Performance of the Year nominees are
(listed in alphabetical order of their first name):
1. Alina Warren (Scotland), Swimming Great Glen Way
2. Brenton Williams (South Africa), Deep Blue Flying
3. Dan Projansky (USA), Flying Down The Red River
4. Dutch Ladies First (Netherlands), English Channel Relay Record
5. Frank Flowers (Cayman Islands), Blossoming In The Cayman Islands
6. Haley Anderson (USA), Silver Lining At the Olympics
7. James Pittar (Australia), Shelley Beach Swim
8. Juan Ignacio Martínez Fernández-Villamil (Spain), The Heart of Navia
9. Lexie Kelly (USA), Open Water Swimming Archivist
10. Night Train Swimmers (USA/New Zealand), SF to SB Relay
11. Penny Palfrey (Australia), Marathon Adventurer
12. Philippe Coizon (France), Bering Strait Crossing
13. Saint Martin Island Long Distance Channel Swimming in Bangladesh
14. Stephen Redmond (Ireland), Tsugaru Channel Crossing
15. Trent Grimsey (Australia), English Channel Record
Anderson swims for the University of Southern California. She is a member of the USA Swimming National Open Water Swimming Team and was ranked in the 2011 FINA World Cup Rankings. She placed second at the 2012 USA Swimming National Open Water Swimming Championships and won the 500-yard freestyle at the 2011 NCAA Women’s Swimming Championships.
She won the FINA Olympic Marathon Swim Qualifier in Setubal Bay, Portugal where she qualified for the Olympics and later won the silver medal at the Olympic 10km Marathon Swim.
Copyright © 2012 by Open Water Source