Richard W. Gaenzle, Jr. is an American open water swimmer from Westport, Connecticut who has completed a 3-man North Channel relay crossing and was a member of the first team in history to complete a Relay Oceans Seven. Their Oceans Seven Relay was piloted by Quinten Nelson and made together with fellow Americans Brian Ross and Chris Kraus on 7 August 2012 in a record-setting time of 10 hours 18 minutes from Ireland to Scotland in 13-16°C despite a high volume of jellyfish.
Kraus, Ross and Gaenzle consist of a renowned 3-man relay team based out of Connecticut in the United States. They have completed the following relays:
- North Channel (Ireland-Scotland)
- Strait of Gibraltar (Spain-Morocco)
- English Channel (England-France)
- Tsugaru Channel (Honshu-Hokkaido, Japan)
- Molokai Channel (Molokai-Oahu, Hawaii)
- Catalina Channel (Catalina Island-California mainland)
- Cook Strait (North Island-to-South Island)
The trio are the first relay to complete the Oceans Seven (a Relay Oceans Seven). Their Oceans Seven Relay is nominated for the 2015 World Open Water Swimming Performance of the Year by the World Open Water Swimming Association. Kraus, Ross and Gaenzel have also completed numerous other open water swims, both as relay and singles, including double crossings of Alcatraz Island in San Francisco Bay as soloists.
- 1975 to 1978. Swim team member, Woodland Hills Swim Club, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, USA.
- 1976 to 1990. Recreational swimming, Pittsburgh Athletic Association, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania USA.
- 1982 to 1986. Recreational swimming and Water Polo, Binder Gymnasium pool, Hartwick College, Oneonta, New York USA.
- 1986 to 2008. Recreational swimming, New York Athletic Club, New York, New York, USA.
- 1988 to 2010. Participant in the annual Greenwich One Mile Swim at Tod’s Point, Greenwich, Connecticut USA.
- 1992 to 2010. Participant in the annual Island Beach Two Mile Swim. Greenwich, Connecticut USA.
- 1992 to 1998. Participant in the NYAC’s annual 12 mile marathon swim, New York Athletic Club, New York, New York USA.
- 1995 to 2010. Participant in the annual Westport/Weston YMCA Compo Beach One Mile Swim. Westport, Connecticut USA.
- 2005 to 2010. Participant in the annual Madison Mile Swim. Madison, Connecticut, USA.
- 2006 to 2010. Participant in the annual Sharkfest and/or Alcatraz Challenge Swims. San Francisco, California USA
- 2006. English Channel, Dover, England to Cap Gris Nez, France. 5-man relay event. 11 hours 26 minutes.
- 2007 to 2011. Participant (fall, winter and spring) in the Country Club of Virginia Polar Bear Club. 25 yard and 25 meter outdoor pool training. Richmond, Virginia USA
- 2009. Boston Light Swim, 8 mile open water swim. 2 man relay event. 3 hours 44 minutes. Boston Massachusetts USA.
- June 2011 - Madison Mile Swim. Madison, Connecticut USA
- June 2011 - Alcatraz Sharkfest Swim. San Francisco, California USA
- July 2011 - Compo Beach Mile Swim. Westport, Connecticut USA
- July 2011 - Greenwich Mile Swim. Greenwich, Connecticut USA.
- July 2011 - Strait of Gibraltar – Relay – Single Crossing
- June 2012 - Alcatraz Waterworld – Around the Rock Swim. San Francisco, California, USA
- August 2012 - North Channel, Ireland – Relay – Single Crossing – 10:18 – Fastest relay crossing ever.
- June 2013 - Alcatraz Sharkfest Swim. San Francisco, California USA
- June 2013 - Madison Mile Swim. Madison, Connecticut USA
- July 2013 - Compo Beach Mile Swim. Westport, Connecticut USA
- July 2013 - Greenwich Mile Swim. Greenwich, Connecticut USA
- September 2013 - Tsugaru Channel, Japan
- September 2013 - Molokai Channel, Molokai-Oahu
Tsugaru Channel Relay
2015 World Open Water Swimming Performance of the Year Nominee
1. Andreas Fath (Germany) Swim for Science
2. Andrea Fazio (Italy) Like Father, Like Son
3. Christian Reichert (Germany) FINA World Cup Champion
4. Dan Projansky (U.S.A.) Butterflying Marathoner
5. Jim Clifford (U.S.A.) Oldest Triple Crowner
6. Fast and Frozen by Henri Kaarma (Estonia), Ryan Stramrood (South Africa), Anna Carin-Nordin (Sweden), Patrick Corcoran (Ireland), Zdeněk Thalmika (Czech Republic), Elina Makïnen (Finland) Two-way North Channel Relay
7. Ganga Avahan by by Paramvir Singh, Gullupilli Narahari, Saripilli Srihari (India) Stage Swimmers
8. Jordan Wilimovsky (U.S.A.) Olympian & World Champion
9. Kelly Gneiting (U.S.A.) Sumo Swimmer
10. Kimberley Chambers (New Zealand) Farallon Freestyler
11. Matthew Moseley (U.S.A.) Trifecta Lake-Ocean-River Swimmer
12. Mike Arbuthnot (South Africa) Midmar Mile Founder
13. Nejib Belhedi (Tunisia) Camel Swim
14. Night Train Swimmers by Grace van der Byl, Dave Holscher, Kimberley Chambers, Adam Eilath, Ashley Horne, Vito Bialla (U.S.A./New Zealand) NT300 Relay
15. Oceans Seven Relay by Rick Gaenzle, Chris Kraus, Brian Ross (U.S.A.) Triumphant Trio
16. Susan Simmons (Canada) Swimming with Multiple Sclerosis
17. Swim The Eden Expedition by Calum Hudson, Jack Hudson, Robbie Hudson (Great Britain) Brotherly Wild Swim
18. Team Nadadores Locos by Amy Appelhans Gubser, Kirk McKinney, Les Mangold, John Sims, Jeff Everett, Andrew McLaughlin (U.S.A.) Two-way Farallon Islands Relay
19. The Old Men And The Sea Relay by Don Baker, Dr. Bill Spore, Dave Radcliffe, Graham Johnston, Bob Best, Bob Beach, Norm Stupfel (U.S.A.) Catalina Cruisers
20. The Deep Enders by Jim McConica, Tom Ball, John Chung, Zach Jirkovsky, Tamie Stewart, Stacey Warmuth (U.S.A.) San Nicholas Channelers
21. Theodore Yach (South Africa) Robben Island Swimmer
22. Trent Theroux (U.S.A.) Comeback Circumnavigation
23. Wendy Trehiou (Jersey) Saint Malo to Jersey
2015 WOWSA Award Nomination
Rick Gaenzel's 2015 World Open Water Swimming Performance of the Year nomination reads as follows:
Oceans Seven Relay by Rick Gaenzle, Chris Kraus and Brian Ross (U.S.A.) Triumphant Trio
Rick Gaenzle, Chris Kraus and Brian Ross achieved a dream with a unique twist. Based on their strong friendship and goal of doing something unique, the trio not only completed their 3-man relay crossing of the Cook Strait, but also became the first relay team in history to complete the Oceans Seven with that 13 hour 51 minute crossing in New Zealand. For their creativity in achieving the first relay Oceans Seven, for their crossing of the North Channel, Molokai Channel, Catalina Channel, English Channel, Strait of Gibraltar and Tsugaru Channel, and for their joyous perspective while facing cold and rough waters, the Oceans Seven Relay of Rick Gaenzle, Chris Kraus and Brian Ross is a worthy nominee for the 2015 World Open Water Swimming Performance of the Year.
- Trio Tackles North Channel Soon Upon Arrival
- World Open Water Swimming Association
- Open Water Swimming
- Connecticut Mermen On Their Way To The Oceans Seven
- Tackling The Tsugaru
- Challenging The Oceans Seven In Asia
- Luci Can Help Across The Tsugaru Channel
- Oceans Seven Relay Style
- The Water Looks So Calm
- Connecticut Trio Makes It Five-for-Five
- Oceans Seven, Team-Style
- Tandem Times Two Triumphant
- 6 Down, 1 To Go For The First Oceans Seven Relay
- Over Halfway To An Historic Oceans Seven
- Gaenzle, Kraus, Ross Complete An Historic Oceans Seven
- 2015 World Open Water Swimming Performance Of The Year Nominees
- WOWSA...Swimmers To Be Celebrated At Big Chill Swim
- 2015 WOWSA Awards - Performance Of The Year Voting
- Wexford Masters Club Is Nearly Halfway There
- Challenging Channel Crossings With Michael Twigg-Smith
- Michael Twigg-Smith On Molokai Channel Crossings