The Authentic Marathon Swim returned for its second consecutive year on July 2-4, 2021 at the Municipality of Istiea-Edipsos.
Amateur and professional swimmers from 10 countries, including the USA, Russia, Spain, Netherlands, Poland, Hungary, Bulgaria, Malta, Luxembourg, and Greece visited North Evia for the needs of the event and discovered the region’s cultural and sports wealth.
The Authentic Marathon Swim was honored by the presence of Prime Minister’s representative, Secretary General of Sports, George Mavrotas and the Deputy Minister of Tourism Sofia Zacharaki, while the President of the Greek National Tourism Organisation Angela Gerekou expressed her support for the event.
“After a difficult year, not only for sports but for all sectors and for the whole world, I think that the heart of Greek sports has begun to beat again. This is what my presence here in the Authentic Marathon Swim at Artemision symbolizes, an organisation with historical roots and a sports event which showcases the wealth that our country has in such events that combine history, culture and sports, so that it can become an important sports tourism pole,” Mr Mavrotas said.
According to Herodotus and other historians, Skyllias with his daughter Hydna were the first long-distance swimmers of history.
On 2 July four brave athletes revived the achievement of Skyllias and Hydna. The swimmers who covered 14.5 kilometres were: the Hungarian Oceans Seven holder and member of the International Marathon Swimming Hall of Fame, Attila Manyoki, the open water masters’ world champion, Vicky Kouveli, the three-time Greek champion and two-time English Channel marathon swimmer, Sofia Psilolignou and the English Channel marathon swimmer, Giannis Kotsiopoulos.
Silver Olympic medalist of Rio, world champion and member of the International Marathon Swimming Hall of Fame, Spyros Gianniotis also joined in on the fun swimming the 10 kilometer route, dedicating his symbolic attempt to the entire Greek delegation that will represent Greece at the Olympic Games in Tokyo.
On 3 July the action started with the new five kilometre open water swimming race with Lachezar Shumkov winning the men’s category and Eleni Economou for the women’s. The one and a half kilometre race followed with Manos Moiras winning the men’s title while Georgia Pavlopoulou won the women’s.
The schedule of the day ended with the three kilometre race with George Arniakos and Ilektra Lebl being the respective winners in the men’s and women’s categories. These races had a starting and finishing point at Pefki beach.
On 4 July, the event climaxed with the 10 kilometre marathon swimming route. After a very demanding race that took place under adverse conditions and strong currents, the winners were George Arniakos and Marina Triantafyllidi.
Only 10 swimmers finished the marathon swimming route.
The schedule also included the 500m children’s race which offered joy and smiles to dozens of children.
The event was organised by the Municipality of Istiea-Edipsos and the entire Local Government with the Region of Central Greece, the Organization of Cultural Development for Central Greece (O.P.A.S.T.E.), the Central Union of Municipalities in Greece (KEDE) and the Regional Union of Municipalities of Central Greece.
You can find some more moment from the event by searching up the official hashtag #authenticmarathonswim.