Chris Greene Lake Swim

A Birds-Eye View of Chris Greene Lake

Race director Kate Stephenson has provided very cool drone footage of the John Shrum cable swim, courtesy of volunteer Brendan Kelly. She also has submitted a belated recap of the races, whose results are available online.

Two National Records Fall at the 2017 John Shrum Memorial Cable Swim

Charlottesville, VA — July 7, 2017
by Kate Andrup Stephensen

Both times she hit the water local swimmer, Shirley Loftus-Charley, crushed the women’s 65 to 69 age group records. Finishing the two-mile swim in 49:07.76, she destroyed the previous record by seven minutes. Back in the water in less than an hour, she broke the one-mile national record by a minute with a time of 23:13.25. This is Loftus-Charley’s thirty sixth consecutive year competing in the race.


In the women’s two mile Norah Hunt was victorious with a time of 44:29.44. On the men’s side, University of Virginia sprinter Ryan Baker went the distance in a time of 42:30.53 making him the victor in both the men’s race and the overall competition. Mark Loftis notably set a new course record in the 55-59 age group, breaking the previous record of Larry Wood by 21 seconds.


Anna Battiata claimed the women’s title in a time of 23:43.68. Dave Holland, in his first appearance in the cable swim since retiring as race director, claimed the overall victory in a time of 21:36.98. Although she was second in her 65-69 age group to superstar Shirley Loftus-Charley, who set a new national record, Kathy Umbednstock was also impressive in beating the previous course record by more than 1.5 minutes.

Since the summer of 1977 the Chris Green Cable Swim has occurred in Charlottesville, Virginia on the second Saturday in July. Participants swim beside a “cable” maintained by staff from the Albemarle County Parks and Recreation Department. The ¼ mile distance runs in a straight line between two permanent wooden pylons and was found to be within an inch of 440 yards when surveyed a few years ago, allowing the racers to be eligible for national records.

Race director Kate Stephensen expresses her thanks to the staff and volunteers from Albemarle County Parks & Recreation, Charlottesville-Albemarle, Lake Monticello, and Western Albemarle Rescue Squads for ensuring safety of all participants. In addition, she would like to recognize the following volunteers who gave up their weekends to make this event possible: Dave Holland directed course set up and take down. Jim & Patty Miller officiated race start and timing. Craig Charley and Christy Evanko oversaw race results. The following individuals assisted with various race day duties: Ellen Shrum, Becca Latimer, Emily Gadek, Melanie & Doug Brede, Abby Holland, Elizabeth Cohen, Sam Lapan, Tobias Gerken, Ruth Stornetta, and Shirley Loftus-Charley. And a special thanks to Brendan Kelly for recording the drone footage and overseeing the race finishes!

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