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100 Olympic Athletes To Watch

From Australia to Zimbabwe, China to the U.S., TIME takes you on a world tour to introduce you to the most compelling athletes you’ll be seeing in the Beijing Games

100. Natalie du Toit

By Alex Perry Thursday, Jul. 24, 2008
Mike Hutchings / Reuters / Landov
South Africa
Age: 24

Natalie du Toit made history when she qualified for both the Paralympic and Olympic teams this year. Du Toit is actually the second amputee ever to qualify for the Olympics — George Eyser, an American gymnast, earned six medals in the 1904 Olympics, including three gold, despite sporting a wooden leg. Du Toit will be competing in the 10km swim. She swam for her country from age 14 until February 2001 when, riding home from swimming practice on a motor scooter, she was involved in a car accident. Her left leg was amputated at the knee. She swims without the aid of a prosthetic limb and is unlikely to win a medal. She will certainly win admirers.

Category: Olympic Games - Beijing 2008  Comments off
Very Cool Open Water Websites
20 unusual, beautiful and interesting open water swim websites are listed below.

If your favorite open water swimming website is not shown, please share the link with our community.

1. Open Water Photography: great open water swimming photos.
2. Natalie du Toit: incredible South African Olympian
3. Maarten van der Weijden: inspirational leukemia survivor.
4. Water World Swim: San Francisco Bay swims.
5. Fiji Swims: open water swims in Fiji.
6. St. Croix Coral Reef Swim: open water race in beautiful St. Croix.
7. Irish Channel: Irish Channel swims.
8. Swim Across America: charity open water swims.
9. Tiburon Mile: world’s most competitive pro race.
10. Swim Trek: open water swimming holiday adventures.
11. La Jolla Cove Swim Club: California open water swimming club.
12. Britta Kamrau: top pro swimmer Britta Kamrau of Germany.
13. Marcos Diaz: top Dominican Republican swimmer.
14. Carina Bruwer: top South African marathon swimmer.
15. Lynne Cox: renowned Lynne Cox.
16. Angela Maurer: top German Olympic swimmer, Angela Maurer.
17. Swim Vacation: British Virgin Islands open water swimming vacations.
18. Rottnest Channel Swim: world’s largest channel race.
19. Ocean Swims: worldwide resource on open water events.
20. All about Open Water: educational open water swimming site.

Photo of Joe Orman in San Francisco Bay during New Year’s Day Alcatraz Swim. Photo by Colin A Gift.

Posted by
Steven Munatone

Category: Fans, Open Water  Comments off
Olympic 10K Marathon Swim

Open Water Swimming Olympians – the Women

The following women will compete in the Olympic 10K Marathon Swim starting
at 9:00 pm on August 20th (9:00 pm New York time on August 19th). It is
going to be an incredibly exciting race to the finish.Who do
you think is going to win? Larisa Ilchenko has not lost a world
championship race in the 5K or 10K since 2004, but her top competitors
from Cassandra Patten and Chloe Sutton to Natalie du Toit and Edith van
Dijk have other plans.

Vote for your gold medal favorite.

Note: the swimmers are listed in the order they qualified for the Olympics.

1. Larisa Ilchenko, Russia
2. Cassandra Patten, Great Britain
3. Yurema Requena, Spain
4. Natalie du Toit, South Africa
5. Jana Pechanova, Czech Republic
6. Poliana Okimoto, Brazil
7. Angela Maurer, Germany
8. Keri-Anne Payne, Great Britain
9. Aurelie Muller, France
10. Ana Marcela Cunha, Brazil
11. Edith Van Dijk, Netherlands
12. Yanquiao Fang, China
13. Andreina Pinto, Venezuela
14. Melissa Gorman, Australia
15. Chloe Sutton, USA
16. Martina Grimaldi, Italy
17. Marianna Lymperta, Greece
18. Nataliya Samorodina, Ukraine
19. Kristel Kobrich, Chile
20. Imelda Martinez, Mexico
21. Eva Berglund, Sweden
22. Teja Zupan, Slovakia
23. Antonella Bogarin, Argentina
24. Daniela Inacio, Portugal
25. Olga Beresneva, Israel*

Olga Beresneva of Israel did not meet the Olympic qualification
standards of her national federation, so she may be replaced by another
swimmer to be named later.

Who do you think will win? Vote on the poll on the left.

by Javier Blazquez at the 2008 World Open Water Swimming Championships
with silver medalist Cassandra Patten, gold medalist Larisa Ilchenko
and bronze medalist Yurema Requena pictured from left to right.

Posted by
Steven Munatone

Category: Olympic Games - Beijing 2008  Comments off