Back to the Vertical Blue Suunto Dive-Off Freediving competition

There are still 2 more days to go and the competition is becoming intense as WilliamTrubridge and Herbert Nitsch battle it out to become the world’s  best freediver in the Suunto Dive-Off competition.

We reported the other day on William Trubridge’s record breaking 92 m dive CNF ( constant weight, no fins) and we have now been sent the video. Please follow this link to underwater videos. It is worth watching.

In the meantime, records continue to be broken.

On 22nd April, both William Trubridge and Herbert Nitsch made new personal bests in FIM (free immersion) and CWT (constant weight) respectively, setting new records at the same time.

Dean's Blue Hole at Vertical Blue 2010

Trubridge, 29, dived to 116 m below the surface and, despite taking a few extra seconds to pull the Velcro tag from the plate, “it was hard to get the tag from the bottom as I struggled with some narcosis,” he said. “But it’s great to have the free immersion record again,” he completed the dive in 4 min 9 sec. The depth was verified by a Suunto D4 dive computer. This is Trubridge’s tenth world record and his first in FIM since 2008. 

In FIM, divers must retrieve a Velcro tag from a metal plate, which is lowered by rope to the announced depth. They are not permitted propulsion equipment such as fins but can use the rope to pull themselves down.

Nitsch reached an incredible 124 m with a CWT dive (constant weight) to set the 30th world record of his career and the deepest self-powered dive of all time. In CWT, athletes must also retrieve a Velcro tag from the plate, but cannot use the rope during the dive. They are, however, allowed fins to assist them. He took 2 min 13 sec to reach the bottom, and looked strong during his ascent. With 35m remaining, his legs appeared to tire and he resorted to alternate arm and leg strokes to successfully complete the dive in 4 min 10 sec.

A graphic description always helps I think, so again, using a tall building as your guide,  Trubridge dived the equivalent of nearly 39 floors and Nitsch achieved an incredible 41 floors in depth (averaging 3 m per floor).

Extraordinary isn’t it?

Subsequent to those dives, yesterday, the 25th, Herbert Nitsch broke the brand new FIM record by achieving a dive of 120 m.

This puts the 40 year old Austrian ahead of the 29 year old New Zealander for the Suunto dive-off  competition held during the Vertical Blue competition to find the best all-round freediver. Divers score points based on the ratio of their dives in three freediving disciplines to current world records.

American Carla-Sue Hanson leads the women’s table. This is how the chart looks at the moment:
Suunto dive-off standings at Vertical Blue 2010

The last two days promise suspenseful diving as these two competitors go to the wire in an attempt to be crowned the best all-round freediver.

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