"Finning millions of sharks for a nutritionless,
poisonous, overpriced soup is likely the pinnacle of waste, ignorance,
and absolute environmental destruction in how we blindly abuse and mass
commodify animals as a food source." ~Todd Cameron
When I was a kid I used to spend
hours and hours in the pool pretending I was a shark. Not much has
changed.... Sharks have been a passion
of mine since before I can remember. The JAWS
films arrived at an impressionable age for me, fueling the fire, and one
of the most amazing experiences I had was an opportunity to dive with
sharks on my birthday in the Bahamas. I was hooked!
Unfortunately we are learning that
it is the sharks that are now hooked; these animals are hunted in
numbers upwards of 100 million a year for their fins which are sold
on the Asian markets for big bucks. A bowl of prized shark fin soup
(cartilaginous shark fin offers zero nutrition and has no flavour) can sell in excess of $100. Due to this great
demand and profits reaching in excess of US $1.2 billion a year, sharks are caught by the hundreds on long-lines
(lines up to 150km long with thousands of baited hooks) hauled aboard
and after their fins are sliced off and while still alive they are tossed back into the ocean to drown and bleed to death.
This can take days... In one year enough long-lines are set out in our
oceans to circle the planet 550 times. Essentially one of the oldest,
most beautiful and most important species in our largest ecosystem is brutally tortured, maimed, and
killed for profit. This barbaric act of 'finning' sharks has to stop now.
Not just for sharks but for our oceans, our planet, and ultimately us.
I was always very drawn to water and swimming, but I was seriously
involved in other sports and didn't start dedicated swim training until
the summer of 2008 around the same time the Beijing Olympics were on.
(This was also the first time the 10k open water swim was an event at
the Summer Games.) I made an instant connection with the water and I
took to all aspects of the sport quickly, did my first race just 4
months later, a 5k open water in the Caribbean and it has been my love,
passion and life since. I have been coaching since early 2010 which
started out as just helping fellow swimmers and grew from there into
LATERAL LINE AQUATIC TRAINING.
In 2010 I traveled to Australia for the Whitsunday Swim, a 14.5km
first-time crossing from Whitsunday Island to Hamilton Island in an effort to raise
awareness for shark conservation. In very early 2011 I progressed to a
100% plant-based diet training and racing as as a vegan athlete. In late 2011 I started totaling all my swim training
and races to span 2300km, the length of the Great Barrier Reef, to help raise
funds for Shark Savers. In August 2012 I did my first 10k race, fighting
wind, waves and very fast competition. I
am super motivated and driven to train hard for a cause I strongly believe in, layering my passions to ‘Swim Fast – For the Sharks’ and dedicate my
races towards helping sharks, and by hopefully making some waves
I'll raise some awareness and also bring about some much needed change
for our oceans.
DOB: August 11th
Height: 6’ 1”
Weight: 170 lb
Diet: Raw Vegan Ⓥ
Mascot: Harry the Hammerhead
Spirituality: Sphyrna Mokkaran - The ocean is my temple, water my religion, and sharks are
If I had a knickel for every time I'm asked:
-How many laps/how far did you swim? (I don't count
laps, I go by distance. Depends on the workout, average is 5000m -
-Do the shark tattoos make you swim faster? (YES! Of
course they do - by intimidating the other swimmers!)
With Rob Stewart, director of SHARKWATER.
Toronto, Canada - June 2011
Harry the Hammerhead, our mascot!
"MUST VISIT" SHARK HOTSPOTS
Blue, Mako - Rhode Island
Great Hammerhead, Tiger, Lemon, Caribbean Reef - Bahamas
Bull - Playa del Carmen, Mexico
Oceanic Whitetip - Cat Island, Bahamas
Great White - Guadalupe Island, Mexico & South Australia
Reef - South Pacific & Great Barrier Reef
Scalloped Hammerhead - Cocos Island, Costa Rica
Whale - Isla Mujeres, Mexico
Oceanic Whitetip - Cat Island, Bahamas
FAST - FOR THE SHARKS
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