Nabil El Shazly
From Openwaterpediaprofessional marathon swimmer, coach of 20 successful English Channel swimmers, and is acknowledged throughout the Middle East as the godfather of open water swimming. Born in Alexandria, Egypt, he traveled the world and raised two sons who were successful professional marathon swimmers, Naser El Shazly and Osama El Shazly.
Professional Marathon Swimming Career
Nabil won the prestigious 1961, 1962, 1963 and 1064 world championships that were held at the Maratona del Golfo Capri-Napoli in Italy. The record he set in his 1962 victory stood for 10 years. He was also victorious at 1964 Traversée internationale du lac St-Jean and was second in the 1965 Traversée internationale du lac St-Jean.
He also won the 1964 San Felecian Lac Race in Quebec, Canada, the 35 km Ohrid Lake Swimming Marathon in Yugoslavia in 1962, the 44 km Suez Canal International Race in Egypt, and finished second in the 1964 24 Heures La Tuque with Abdul Latif Abou Heif. He finished third in Lake Ontario 10-miler, second in the 10-mile Trio Rier pod swim, also in Canada, and was third in the 57 km Maratón Acuática Internacional Santa Fe - Coronda, the 10 km Sante Fe Lake Swim, and the 88 km Maratón Internacional Hernandarias – Parana in Argentina during the 1966 season.
Nabil was Egypt's national swimming coach for 25 years and passed on his love of the open water to hundreds of amateur and professional swimmers including Mohamed Marouf during his record-setting International Self-Transcendence Marathon-Schwimmen as well as to 20 English Channel swimmers.
In addition to his legacy as an athlete and coach in the open water swimming world, he left his mark as an international consultant for scuba diving and lifesaving. He was a sailing and rowing competitor, and still competes in masters pool swimming events to this day.