By Maxence Jaillet
The Lazy Seal Freediving Club held its breath as New Zealander William Trubridge attempted to dive deeper than his world record of 101-metre, Constant Weight without Fins (CNF) set four years ago. 20 members of the Wellington club shared breakfast on Wednesday morning at D4 on Featherston to see the attempt broadcast live from Dean’s Blue Hole, Bahamas.
Chris Marshall, one of the club’s committee members and international freediving representative said the dive was a very difficult one to watch. “We knew he was always going to push to the plate. He is very good at equalizing; he is good at that part of the descent. The time for the descent as we could see from the television was pretty much spot on, but you could see on the way up that he was physically struggling.”
Few minutes after his attempt, William Trubridge posted his dive’s profile online. He was recorded with an average speed of 0.89 metre per second while descending and a slightly slower ascent speed of 0.81 m/s.
“At the end, somewhere around ten to fifteen metres from the surface, he realised that he would definitely not going to make the dive, so he signaled his safety divers (two deep safeties
and one shallow safety) by pulling on the line, which disqualified him. That was the signal for the safety divers to bring him to the surface as quickly as possible so that he wouldn’t be out
for long,” said Marshall.
The experienced freediver reckoned that this was a difficult choice: “[Trubridge] could have kept swimming and then blacked out, but it would have been more exhausting and probably would have looked worse. Because he might have been unconscious for a little longer and might have looked quite bad for the coverage.”
Nonetheless, Lazy Seals were happy to see William Trubridge able to comment on his attempt as safety and recovery are an essential part of the training process at the Wellington freediving Club. That is in fact the first thing taught to new members during their introduction session held every month.
William Trubridge already said that he would try again to grab the 102-metre world record in about six months.