Swimrun Italy has one of the biggest event calendars we have seen when it comes to swimrun events - too many for us to list in our main calendars, so here is a link to the swimrun Italy home page with a .pdf of the entire season!
In 2012, two Italians had the idea to run and swim from island to
island, starting in Grado and finishing in Lignano Sabbiadoro, involving
5 sandy island in the Marano Lagoon. The men were Francesco Degano and Matteo Benedetti.
At that time, they had not heard of swimrun, and had no idea that similar races were already being held in Sweden. The rules were different, as the 2 disciplines evolved separately.
In 2014 it became an international competition, in the opposite direction from Lignano Sabbiadoro to Grado, run by Amphibianman on May 10th, and by Aquaticrunner on August 3rd. These were separate events held by two different organisers, using the same route.
Because of the relatively warm waters, wetsuits were banned as were hand paddles, but pull buoys were compulsory.
There can be very strong currents between the islands - over 5 knots - and so the event was planned for low tide, to minimise the currents and allow for better beach running.
The route from from Lignano Sabbiadoro to Grado covered 24km, of which 4.5km were swimming and 19.5km running. The first Aquaticrunner race was won by Gianni Sartori in a time just under 3 hours.
The Italian swimrun series now has quite a few events, starting in April and running through to October, with one final event in December on the list!
There are 2 National Championship events planned for 2023;
On the 23rd July there is the Bologna Swimrun event for couples.
On the 23rd September there is the Aquaticrunner event for individual competitors and also the IWC Individual World Championship event Aquaticrunner Lignano - Grado.
The Lignano - Grado course now covers 19 transitions for a total distance of 27.1km. The swimming sections cover 5.35km, and the running sections cover 21.75km (equivalent to a Half marathon!)
Individual competitors must use a pull buoy and are allowed to use hand paddles. There is a limit of 250 competitors, who can qualify to register by one of the following 3 methods:
There is a series of swimrun events around the world that act as qualifying events for the Lignano - Grado event. They are;
Other events that may qualify you to take part are the following:
The whole business of qualifying to enter the main event is rather complicated, as you can see from the above lists. This is confirmed if you go to the main event registration page!
Also, don't forget that you need a medical certificate.
However it is a spectacular race to take part in, and well worth the effort!
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