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HomeNewsArchivesTeenager Takes Top Honors in Beach-to-Beach Power Swim

Teenager Takes Top Honors in Beach-to-Beach Power Swim

May 24, 2009 — Former St. John resident Augusto Cividini, 15, was the first person to pass the finish line at Hawksnest Bay in Sunday's sixth annual Beach-to-Beach Power Swim, sponsored by the Friends of V.I. National Park.
"I've been training in a pool," Cividini said just after he came out of the water.
Now a Miami resident, Cividini finished the course in one hour, 21 minutes and 50 seconds.
Maggie Ravenna, a 22-year-old from St. Louis, Mo., was second across the finish line and the fastest woman with a time of one hour, 23 minutes and 22 seconds.
"It was my first open-water swim," she said, catching her breath after she crossed the finish line. "It was really hard in the middle because the waves were coming toward me."
Cividini and Ravenna swam the 3.5-mile long course. The event also had a one-mile short course that ended at Cinnamon Bay and a 2.25-mile intermediate course that ended at Trunk Bay. All started at Maho Bay.
A total of 238 people participated from 22 states, the British Virgin Islands, Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands. Last year 164 people swam the three courses.
"This event is getting a reputation, particularly among master swimmers," said Friends President Joe Kessler.
The event raises funds for the Friend's programs, and Kessler said it wouldn't happen without the efforts of the 80 to 100 volunteers who do everything from work the time clocks to hand out water.
"I love the event," said St. John resident Janet Foote, getting ready to hand out medals to the swimmers as they crossed the finish line. "I do it every year. It's an opportunity to help the friends."
Former St. John resident Louise Wearmouth, 40, now living on Tortola, was the second woman across the long-course finish with a time of one hour, 29 minutes and 36 seconds.
"It was hard, and it was quite choppy from Windswept to Perkins Cay," she said.
St. John resident Kate Hooven, 24, took third place in the women's long course with a time of one hour, 30 minutes and 13 seconds. Another St. John resident, Megan Cliff, 30, was the fourth woman across the long course finish line. Her time was one hour, 32 minutes and 13 seconds. Like Wearmouth, she too found a little chop at the point heading into Hawksnest Bay.
"But it was great," she said.
John Ravenna, 45, of Ridgefield, Conn., was second for the men in the long course with a time of one hour, 27 minutes and nine seconds. Jose Coleman-Davis, 56, from Puerto Rico, took third in the men's long course.
"It's always a challenge as to where you go and where the current is," he said.
Fourth for the men in the long course went to Benjamin Hartell, 23, of St. Thomas with a time of one hour, 32 minutes and 57 seconds. He said he had good draft from the swimmers in front of him for the first half of the course, but by the halfway point he lost that advantage.
Sen. Craig Barshinger, 52, was first across the finish for the swimmers who swam the long course in the assisted category. Laughing about the "20-somethings" that he raced against, he said he won in his category wearing 30-year-old hard rubber fins.
Barshinger said the Power Swim celebrates the beauty of the island's North Shore.
"It's the most beautiful thing on the planet," he said.
Full results are available at friendsvinp.org/swim/results_09.htm.
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