|Born||June 3, 1967|
|Residence||Texas, United States|
|Known for||Claimed swim across the Pacific Ocean|
Benoît Lecomte (born 1967) is a French-born long-distance swimmer (now a naturalized American citizen) who claimed to be the first man to swim across the Atlantic Ocean without a kick board in 1998.
Atlantic Ocean swim
During his 73-day, 3,716-mile (5,980 km; 3,229 nmi) journey, Lecomte was accompanied by a 40-foot (12 m) sailboat that had an electromagnetic field for 25 ft (7.6 m) to ward off sharks. He was accompanied by a crew of three aboard the sailboat, where he could rest and eat between each swimming period. Lecomte typically spent eight hours swimming each day in sessions of two to four hours.
The stated purpose of the swim was to raise money for cancer research as a tribute to his father.
Lecomte's claim has not been recognized by the Guinness World Records.
Since there is no standard definition of "swimming across the Atlantic", there is uncertainty about distance that Lecomte actually covered swimming in the water rather than riding in a boat with the prevailing currents. According to the Rocky Mountain News, Lecomte would have had to average 8 mph (13 km/h; 3.6 m/s) to have swum the entire distance, 3 to 4 times as fast as other long-distance swimmers.
Other Atlantic Ocean swim claims
- Guy Delage – swim from Cape Verde Islands to Barbados in 1994
- Jennifer Figge – swim from Cape Verde Islands to Trinidad in 2009
The Pacific Swim
Benoit Lecomte began his swim of the Pacific Ocean on Tuesday June 5th 2018. He began in Chōshi Japan in the Kantō region, and hopes to make it to California. The distance to be covered is approximately 5,500 mi (8,900 km; 4,800 nmi) and hopes to end up in San Francisco, California. He expects the trip to take about six months. Part of the reason for the swim is to raise awareness about sustainability and the impact of excessive human garbage polluting the world's oceans. Lecomte says:
"Before anything else I am a father and as a father the future of my children concerns me because, as we all know, our way of life is not sustainable. I don't want to be passive and pass on to my children the liability we are tagging on to our environment. We can all make a difference once we realize how we can be better stewards of the environment and our own ecological footprint, make appropriate daily changes and inspire others to do the same. This is the first goal of this event and is intended to get people's attention throughout the world and to understand that the solution is in our hands and that we can take action.
The second goal is to encourage and work with the education system in all countries to include classes on sustainability and what our ecological footprints are into their own curriculum, because, as we all know, sustainability starts with education."
Lecomte is to be accompanied by a crew and is going to be performing a "staged swim" (resuming the swim in the exact location in which he left the water) using a GPS tracking device, enabling him to accurately track the number of miles he completes thus enabling him to reach a new world record in open water swimming. Lecomte plans to average about 40 mi (64 km) a day, swimming eight hours with the help of the current.
There are plans to produce a documentary film and also talks of making it to TV.
- Report on Ben Lecomte at the US French embassy website.
- Swimming Around The World. Retrieved 1 Aug 2004.