Friday, November 27, 2009

2009 Freediving World Championships: Thursday November 26

Last day of official training. The safety team has spent two 8+ hour days in the water ensuring that all athletes get a chance on the competition line: the mask-tans are coming along nicely!

After training today we tested the counter-ballast system. Herbert volunteered to do a 120m swim down to the plate: when he reached the bottom the counter-ballast would be activated and he would be pulled up to the top. He estimated 2 minutes down to the plate and then signal with a tug: if there was no tug the counter-ballast would be activated at 2:10. Well, Herbert reached the plate, tugged, waited, tugged again, waited... At the surface, Naslund was running a dive simulation and refused to activate the counter-balance until every detail had been carried out, even though it meant leaving Herbert waiting at 120m! Finally, after Herbert had already started pulling to the surface, the counter-ballast was released and Herbert got a nice ride to the surface at 1.5 m/s. He surfaced and joked about it like he had just been at the bottom of a swimming pool!

We then simulated a counter-ballast failure, pulling up Christian Ernest (SWE) from 30m: this was also a lanyard test. The video is below and I think shows off the recovery system fairly well.

Well, we've seen quite a few blackouts in the last few days: I think we're ready for the show to start tomorrow!

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