On Monday 7 November, Dean Chaouche claimed his second British record in Constant Weight No Fins (CNF) diving to a depth of 78m at the inaugural Blue Element International freediving competition, adding 4m to his previous record of 74m, set at Vertical Blue in the Bahamas on 22 April this year. Many believe CNF to be the purest freediving discipline; the athlete, relying on strength and technique, may only use his arms and legs to propel himself through the water, in a style of breaststroke, down a weighted guideline and back.
The record was broken on day 3 of 6 and was a boost to Dean’s confidence after an unsuccessful Constant Weight national record attempt on day 1 of 104m:
“I knew after the first day I needed to do a dive which I knew I could do and it did the trick. It felt easy on the way down, it felt good on the way up, so I feel confident now that I can proceed into the competition and reattempt the first dive on the first day. The island is beautiful, this amazing back drop and the conditions in training were awesome.”
And after giving the above quote, the next day Dean completed a 91m FIM dive, so it appears that the record holder has regained control and focus and is on track to attempt the CWT dive.
Blue Element International is taking place on the island of Dominica, in a huge volcanic crater where water drops to depths of hundreds of meters, just a short distance from the shore. Athletes taking part in the competition have the choice of competing in any one or all of the competition depth disciplines: Constant Weight (CWT), Constant Weight No Fins (CNF) and Free Immersion (FIM). The competition started on Friday 4 November and will finish on Friday 11.
Photos: Daan Verhoeven