The Leme ao Pontal Challenge offers a 36 km coastal course with ocean swells and strong currents that requires nocturnal navigation.
Like many Catalina Channel crossings in California, the Leme ao Pontal Challenge in Brazil starts around midnight. The swimmers walk onshore usually under a star-filled night sky under calm conditions with small undulations coming from the southeast. They swim southward along the coast of Rio de Janeiro into the sunrise escorted by their captain and crew towards Pontal.
Two 6-person relays were formed by 12 swimmers representing the State of Amazonas:
“Bodó Ticado and Jaraqui Elétrico are names to honor our culture and our fish from the northern region of Brazil,” explained Pierre Gadelha who guided the Jaraqui Elétrico team.
Bodó Ticado completed the swim in 8 hours 23 minutes to set the course record for the men’s neoprene relay division. Jaraqui Elétrico completed the swim in 9 hours 37 minutes.
Tomás Cunha had been preparing for his solo crossing since November 2016, but the stars finally aligned for him nearly two years later. Cunha took advantage of the great conditions on September 8th. He completed the course in 8 hours 58 minutes – one of the few solo swimmers to complete the longest marathon swim in Brazil under 9 hours.
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