A bit than a month ago on October 24th, 2015 I participated in the Zlin Cup 2015 - a freediving competition focused on two pool disciplines: the STA and DNF. I have been attending this competition for years, except last year when I went to compete in the Vertical Blue '14. This year I could go back to my tradition and participate in the Zlin Cup 2015. I won the Cup, but unexpectedly this competition brought me a lot of satisfaction.
After a failed static (7:31) I was loosing 40 seconds to Martin Valenta (CZK) who pulled off 8:11, breaking by 5 seconds Czech national record of Martin Stepanek, which wasn't broken for 14 years and was a World Record established in 2001.
I was watching his start while trying to relax in the water. Less than 5 minutes before my OT I saw Martin coming up on 175m. He did a very solid performance after a big static result. His good result meant I had to swim 192m to win the whole competition. At this moment I thought “it’s gonna be tough”. Normally, this distance is easy for me, but let’s not forget that we did the static beforehand, and a 2nd swim during one day can’t be as good as the 1st one.
It turned out to be one of the best dives in DNF I have ever done. Great control, great feelings and when I turned at 175m I knew it’s “mine”. I swam until I saw the “T” mark, because I knew it’s already more than enough. This way I made 197m when I surfaced very clean. If I’m not mistaken it’s the longest DNF in the world done after a STA during the same day. I only hope to have the same state of mind one day when I will try to break the world record in DNF again, because this execution was perfect despite all the anxiety beforehand!