Swimming in open water had its first letters of nobility with Stéphane LECAT, this former athlete and coach, triple winner of the World Cup and European Champion.

Today, Director of the French team of swimming in open water, and already known by the “International swimming hall of fame”, as a marathon swimmer, since last april he is, once again, distinguished as an administrator and organizer of the french success of open water in 2016 and 2017.

Since the last 3 editions of the European and World championship, the french team of open water has proved to be the best team in the world.

Since 2017, the open water team has performed very well on international competitions to become the best team in the world.

Open water is now part of the federal program in French Polynesia, the Tahitian Swimming Federation is officially committed to it.

In Polynesia, since less than ten years, open water has appeared in swimming events. It cares for itself, being associated with other disciplines to offer a creative and varied program of aquatic events through the Waterman and or crossings like the one from Taha’a to Raiatea.
Now this discipline is gaining more and more importance with the local public.

Moreover, we had the opportunities to organize the Tahiti Swimming Experience, on the initiative of Stéphane Debaere whose initial idea, was to bring round pool’s champions in Polynesia and to make them evolve in the natural environment of our lagoons. A won challenge, because the experience has gain their heart. Who is able to dream better than swim in the life-size pool ?

In addition, do not forget that the Polynesian islands are surrounded by water, so it is a perfect environment for the practice of this discipline that naturally invites to swimming in open water.

All these elements have led the Tahitian Swimming Federation, in close collaboration with the Clubs, to respond to a common desire to put open water in our waters.

And since the opportunities are not lacking, we received the visit in Polynesia of Stéphane LECAT, the current Technical Director of open water at the FFN, former French champion of open water, European champion, vice-president world champion, three times, winner of the marathon world cup. We invited him to visit our islands and observe the few races that take place there. He was totally seduced by the environment, the racing conditions and the Polynesian welcome.

Already, the idea of ​​organizing a step of the World Cup in Polynesia is emerging and it is quite natural that we decided, to guide the most beautiful swimming event in Polynesia, the Tahiti Swimming Experience, to the free water.

I want to thank, here, the President of the French Swimming Federation, Mr Gilles SEZIONALE, Stéphane LECAT, Technical Director of open water, to bring round news icons of french sports, among them, the world champion Aurélie Muller, Logan FONTAINE and Marc-Antoine OLIVIER and also Camille LACOURT which comes back to us, he was present during the first season.

A big Mauruuru to Philippe LUCAS, this figurehead of physical and sports preparation of our french swimming’s stars, that we’ll have the honor to host in Polynesia.

Finally, we wish, that by this authentic and unique experience, the FFN and its ambassadors will be as seduced as our 2016 guests, by the conditions of unfolding races in Polynesia. Let’s hope that this new meeting will allow Polynesia to become part of an official FINA competition program, since it includes, as of this season, the FFN calendar through the EDF AQUA CHALLENGE and to position it as a destination of choice, in one of the stages of the World Cup FREE WATER.

Another challenge in which our partners will not fail to be with us. May they be thanked for their renewed confidence in us.

It is with great pleasure that my team, the affiliated clubs and myself give you an appointment, you foreign sportsmen, locals, school children, the general public, to participate in this great event of festive aquatic races, that is the Tahiti Swimming Experience – Season 2.

Mauruuru

Michel SOMMERS