Nearly 400 Compete at 2019 Odyssey SwimRun Casco Bay Islands

Nearly 400 racers tested their endurance mettle at Odyssey SwimRun Casco Bay Islands outside of Portland, Maine. The fourth running of this multisport adventure featured long- and short-course teams along with a fast-growing solo category. All racers had to navigate a run course that consisted of sandy beach, shoreline scrambles, singletrack trails and rutted out island roads. Swims between islands were tough with tidal changes and fast-sweeping currents. See the complete results here and enjoy images from the event below.

2019 Odyssey SwimRun Casco Bay Islands
Athletes boarded a chartered Casco Bay Lines ferry from downtown Portland, Maine out to the islands. Photo: Mark Simmons
2019 Odyssey SwimRun Casco Bay Islands
Long course teams started their day on Peaks Island. Twenty one miles of total swimming and running covered a total of 10 islands. Photo: Mark Simmons
2019 Odyssey SwimRun Casco Bay Islands
Portland-based John Stevens and Matt Hurley were the three-time defending champions at the start of the day. Photo: Mark Simmons
2019 Odyssey SwimRun Casco Bay Islands
After an opening two-mile run leg on Peaks, the athletes were still in big groups entering the first swim of the day crossing over to Cushings. Photo: Mark Simmons
2019 Odyssey SwimRun Casco Bay Islands
The most typical gear set-up includes swimming with hand paddles, a pull buoy, and a swimrun specific wetsuit. All while wearing shoes, of course. Photo: Mark Simmons
2019 Odyssey SwimRun Casco Bay Islands
Teams ran through the grounds of Fort Scammel used in the War of 1812. Photo: Mark Simmons
2019 Odyssey SwimRun Casco Bay Islands
Despite being one of the shorter run legs on the day, House Island threw some challenging hills at the runners. Photo: Mark Simmons
2019 Odyssey SwimRun Casco Bay Islands
The swim crossing between House and Little Diamond Islands was 1400 yards and one of the longest on the day. Photo: Mark Simmons
2019 Swimrun Casco Bay Islands
It’s not all swimming and running though. Cow Island was a new addition to the course this year and featured a steep rock wall in which athletes used a rope to pull themselves up. Photo: Mark Simmons
2019 Swimrun Casco Bay Islands
Vaill Island is the smallest island on the course but is also the most technical. It requires scaling up, over down boulders. Photo: Mark Simmons
2019 Swimrun Casco Bay Islands
Despite the terrain difficulty, Heather Westerman and Emily Boerger still cannot contain their excitement. Photo: Mark Simmons
2019 Swimrun Casco Bay Islands
After the circumnavigation of Vaill Island it is time for the one kilometer swim across Shark Cove from Andrew’s Nubble to The Nubble on Long Island. Photo: Mark Simmons
2019 Swimrun Casco Bay Islands
Organizers opted to run the racers farther on Chebeague Island than in previous editions of the event. This was a half-mile section on a sandy beach towards the Chebeague Island Boat Yard. Photo: Mark Simmons
2019 Swimrun Casco Bay Islands
Opposite of the Chebeague Island Boat Yard on the island was Indian Point, where athletes had to negotiate some narrow trails down to the beach. Photo: Mark Simmons
2019 Swimrun Casco Bay Islands
The penultimate island of the course was Little Chebeague, home to some fun trails. Photo: Mark Simmons
2019 Swimrun Casco Bay Islands
For the fourth straight year John Stevens and Matt Hurley were first to the finish. Photo: Mark Simmons
2019 Swimrun Casco Bay Islands
Both Stevens and Hurley have strong open water swimming backgrounds and are now coaches at Purple Patch. Photo: Mark Simmons
2019 Swimrun Casco Bay Islands
Less than two minutes behind Stevens and Hurley were mixed team winners Bronwen and Greg Dierksen. The Dierksen’s also won Odyssey SwimRun Boston Harbor Islands last month and became the first American team to podium at an OtillO World Series event with their second place finish at Isles of Scilly in June. Photo: Mark Simmons
2019 Swimrun Casco Bay Islands
In addition to the long course race there was stiff competition for the podium spots in the short course and solo categories as well. Photo: Mark Simmons
2019 Swimrun Casco Bay Islands
Emily Boerger and Heather Westerman of Team Shark Bait were late entrants into Casco Bay Islands following their women’s division win at Boston Harbor Islands. Photo: Mark Simmons