One month from today, UConn swimmers will be racing through the choppy waters of Long Island Sound.
On Aug. 6, six athletes will swim over 15 miles across the Sound to raise money for the St. Vincent's Cancer Foundation.
David Datz, Brian Egan, Brendon Egan, Kiernan Jennings, Jonathan and Anthony are all getting ready for what lies beneath the dark waters. Jennings said it's all mental.
When you're looking down, you only see one foot down so that's a little nerve wracking," Jennings said.
"I remember my coach actually swallowed a jellyfish during the shift," Datz said.
"The harbor is full of diesel fuel and it's just not normal," Brian Egan said.
"The biggest thing is when you look forward when you're swimming, the coast never seems to get close," Brendon Egan said.
Some have swam the race before, but for others, it's their first time. Brendon explains how it all works.
"We jump in swim as fast as you can for those 15 minutes, you get out, we switch, we give the signal and we switch back in and we just keep doing that rotation," Brendon said.
But not to be fooled; as fun as the race may be, he said you're always looking to take a break.
"Trust me when you're swimming in the sound you're looking for the switch," Brendon said.
While they're all physically fit and have trained for the sprint in the ocean and in pools, they said preparing mentally is the hard part.
"It's more mentally exhausting than physically," Datz said. "Every time I think of the swim, I think of all the people that I'm helping."
"Open water swims are just a different breed than like anything in a pool," Jennings said.
All donations will directly support oncology programs and provide financial assistance to cancer patients and their families.
The UConn swimmers will be competing against other swimmers along the coast.
"When you get to pair a good cause with something you love your whole life, swimming, it's a great opportunity," Brendon said.
"Obviously coming in first would be a pretty nice thing but at the end of the day it snot really about that its about charity and raising money for people who really need it," Jennings said.
The swim will be a total of 15.7 miles. The swimmers will leave Port Jefferson, New York, and swim into Captain's Cove in Bridgeport.
You can read more about a fundraiser supporting the cause on July 15 by clicking here.
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