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Colorado State University Professor Wants to Become Oldest to Swim English Channel

English Channel Swimming professor George Thornton
Photo courtesy of Colorado State University
English Channel swimming professor George Thornton
Photo courtesy of CSU

A semi-retired psychology professor at CSU is trying to cross something off of his bucket-list.  George Thornton hopes to become the oldest man ever to swim across the English Channel.

Thornton is 72-years-old. He is trying to beat the record set by 70-year-old Roger Allsopp last year.

Professor Thornton set up his swimming “window” of July 10th-18th nearly two years ago because there are strict rules about the Channel Swimming and Pilots Association. If you swim from England to France, you must be escorted by a recognized, commercially qualified Channel Escort pilot on one of the registered, commercially certificated Channel crossing escort vessels.

According to a press release from Colorado State University:

Thornton has already been practicing informally for the past 12 years swimming the length of Horsetooth Reservoir as part of the Horsetooth 10K Swim (it takes him about four hours). He has participated in 100 triathlons over the past 20 years, including 12 Ironman events.

More recently, he’s been training in La Jolla, Calif., and Lindenmeier Lake near his home by swimming 12 to 15 hours at a time. He expects the Channel to take 18 hours or more.

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