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Katerina Nehua

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Katerina Nehua

Katerina Nehua (1903–1948) was an endurance swimmer from New Zealand in the 1930's who competed in a number of endurance events including a second-place finish at the 1931 Manly International 500 Endurance Swimming Contest to Mercedes Gleitze. Later in 1931, she broke the world record at Balmoral Baths when she swam non-stop for 72 hours 9 minutes in Rushcutters Bay, Sydney. In a radio broadcast to Australian and New Zealand audiences, she said, "A person requires courage and plenty of it, to stay in the water over night. Therefore my advice to young people who might like to try endurance swimming is don’t'. She later broke her world record in May 1931 in Brisbane for 72 hours 21 minutes. In March 1932 she attempted to swim for 100 hours, but was forced to leave the water after 60.

Manly International 500 Endurance Swimming Contest[edit]

Copplestone also competed in the 1931 Manly International 500 Endurance Swimming Contest that was the first professional swimming contest of its kind in Australia as well as a charity swim for the Manly Hospital Citizens' Relief Fund. 60 swimmers from England, America, Italy, New Zealand and Australia, including 14 women, competed in the Manly Baths. The competition was to see who could swim the longest for a total cash prize of £500. The competitors were fed with liquid food through a tube provided by assistants from a boat. The food consisted of chicken broth, milk, and chocolate in liquid form.

Gleitze won in 48 hours 15 minutes with Nehua second in 47 hours 52 minutes and Lily Copplestone in third.

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