Twenty Four world-class athletes from 13 different countries have joined event host and dual world record holder, William Trubridge, to compete in the 2015 Suunto Vertical Blue Freedive Challenge at Dean’s Blue Hole, Bahamas.
This freediving depth competition is considered to be “the” sporting event of the year for elite competitive freedivers – the “Wimbledon of Freediving”, as dubbed by the NY Times. Now in its eighth incarnation the Vertical Blue event provides a spectator-friendly competition zone and record breaking battles among the world’s most talented freediving athletes.
Comprised of three freediving depth disciplines – Constant Weight, Constant No-Fins and Free Immersion (CWT, CNF, FIM respectively), this AIDA judged competition offers competitors six official dives to challenge themselves and their rivals to obtain the coveted Suunto Vertical Blue Championship title. Performances will be filmed on the surface and at depth using GoPro cameras to give the viewer a complete perspective on how deep these dives really are, amazingly all on breath-hold.
Among the many record holders in attendance this year for the first time is Annelie Pompe of Sweden, a world renowned mountaineer who was the first Swedish woman to summit Everest. Pursuing his own records is William Trubridge who currently holds the world record in what most say is the purest form of freediving, constant no-fins. Trubridge may seek to deepen his existing world record of CNF 101 meters/ 331 feet to an ever deeper 102 meters/ 334 feet.
“This year I am competing in three events almost back to back in May and June: Suunto Vertical Blue, the Caribbean Cup and Nirvana. Of course it’s also a World Championships year, and that event, scheduled for September in Cyprus is the focus of my training, but I hope to be already reaching good enough results that I can start pushing some boundaries in the coming months. I’ve been focusing on CNF (no fins), but I’m also doing dives in both CWT and FIM to keep those disciplines trained,” said Trubridge. “It’s been a while since we’ve competed in Dean’s Blue Hole during the spring months, when weather and water clarity tend to be better, so I’m looking forward to that as well. My gas tank of motivation is topped off, and I’m ready to step on the gas!”
Freedive enthusiasts from across the globe can tune into the Vertical Blue Facebook page and Trubridge’s Twitter feed as well as the Vertical Blue twitter handle & hashtag #VB2015 for up-to-date news and results.
News courtesy of Freedive Magazine.