Student conquers one of the world’s toughest swim challenges

Emma Day came third place in the Yangtze River Swimming Festival, China

Emma Day came third place in the Yangtze River Swimming Festival, China

Emma Day came third place in the Yangtze River Swimming Festival, China

A sports scholar at Manchester Metropolitan University has come third place in one of the world’s toughest swim challenges.

Swimming scholar Emma Day competed in the international Yangtze River Swimming Festival in China, which is renowned as one of the toughest tests for swimmers anywhere in the world.

The race takes place annually in Manchester’s sister city Wuhan and athletes must swim 1,800 metres against a strong current.

Day, who usually competes in the 400m individual medley event, started longer-distance, open-water swimming last year and was invited to Wuhan in 2018 to compete in the race where she unfortunately didn’t finish.

Following this, she was invited to take part in the 2018 Wuhan Marathon, where she came 11th in the female category against 60 professional swimmers and subsequently invited back to Wuhan to compete in this year’s River Crossing Festival.

Day said: “I decided to the race again because it’s a great challenge as well as being lots of fun. I have never done a race like this before – the current is very strong so one tactical error could mean race over, or if you aim for the finish too soon you will end up missing it and being swept further away, so I love the challenge.

“It feels great to come third after not completing the race last year.  I managed to learn from my mistakes last time, so it’s nice to know the training and preparations have worked. 

“I would like to thank everyone at Manchester Met and MMU Sport for helping me, as well as Manchester City Council, City of Manchester Swim Team, and my team mate and training partner Ashley Hogg for helping me ensure good preparations to swim well.

“I’m now taking a break over summer to give my body a rest and I am excited to see what next year holds in terms of racing.”

More than 2000 people take part in the race from countries all over the world, including New Zealand, Thailand, Sweden, Russia and Brazil.

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