family Sport

Lucy Wardle Streeter – High Diving Record Holder

I came across this post about a men’s world record setting high dive and it reminded me about my mom’s first-cousin, Lucy Wardle Streeter, who in 1985 set the women’s record for high diving and still holds the Guinness record today.

From Stacey A. Morse’s biographical article in Easy Reader News (March 2022):

In 1985, Rancho Palos Verdes resident Lucy Wardle Streeter climbed the ladder of a swaying, 120-foot steel tower, built to her specifications at the edge of a pool in Ocean Park, a marine mammal amusement park in Hong Kong.

At the top of the tower, she stepped onto a platform barely as wide as her stance, and stood with arms outstretched, for 10 seconds. Then she lept, and executed a beautifully arched, backward flip. Three seconds later she entered the water at 71 miles an hour, knocking the wind out of herself.

According to the 2022 Guinness Book of World Records, the 120-foot, 9-inch [36.8m] dive remains the highest dive ever performed by a woman.

I met Lucy once while on a family vacation to Los Angeles. I remember seeing her world record certificate and a photo of her on the platform. Just today I discovered a video of the record breaking dive on YouTube:

Wardle’s dive of 120 feet 9 inches bettered the record of 109-4 set by another American, Debi Boccia, in Rome in 1982.


Michael Phelps’ World Record Smashing Swim

During my prime of swimming for the University of Lethbridge, my fastest time for the 50 meter freestyle (short course) was 24.59. It’s fun and amazing to watch the world’s best swimmers going four times that distance (and long course too) at the same pace. Even if you’re not a swimming fan, one can’t help but get excited as Michael Phelps shatters a world record.

Phelps broke five world records, including the one above, during the World Swimming Championships last week in Australia. (They ended April 1).

The Washington Post has an interesting article stating that 60% of new swim records have been set in the last two years, while the records set in track-and-field on the other hand, have been much more steady.

The Post’s explanation of how athletes can be improving in leaps and bounds in one sport but not in another boil down to, more funding, better coaching, and an older average age of high caliber swimmers. They say the typical body shape of swimmers has also been changing as of late.

As an aside, a former roommate and teammate of mine competed at Nationals (the Canadian ones) during the same time and won both the 50 and 100 meter freestyle events a seriously awesome accomplishment (even though, it seems to me, he downplays it). Congratulations Richard.