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Q&A with world record holder Angel More

Angel More  started swimming Alcatraz with WWS at the age of 11 and now has 36 Alcatraz Crossings under her race belt and is an accomplished triathlete! Her recent accomplishments include:

  • Pacific Grove F1 USA Junior Elite Draft legal Triathlon. 3rd place in 15 and under age group
  • Folsom Triathlon, 2nd place AG
  • Silver in females 39 and under at the Alcatraz Challenge
  • 2nd place AG at Wildflower Olympic, 3rd place in the Auburn mini-tri
  • 1st AG in Half Moon Bay!
  • USA cycling race [Memorial Day Criterium Race] 2nd in Junior 13-14 Age Group Category Cat 4

We caught up with Angel during a busy season of racing to get her perspective.

How did you get started in open water swimming?
I have been pool swimming ever since I can remember. In March of 2014, my swim Coach Brandy Lynn Vassallo decided to swim Alcatraz and asked our whole team if we wanted to do it with her. I was looking for longer distance swims and immediately said yes. I was the only one to do it out our whole team (a team of 300 people). Lot of the parents were against the idea and thought that I couldn't swim that far in the frigid waters, however my mom fully supported me and did everything she could to help me. I was unsure of how I was going to face the cold and so my mom did research. This led us to Water World. Pedro and all the coaches were so helpful. They gave me great tips, swam with me, and showed me the world of open water swimming.

Who is your mentor and inspiration?
My mom, has been there for me since day one. Even when other people were saying that I couldn’t swim from Alcatraz, she continued to support me. She inspired me continue swimming and always reminded me that I should not give up on my dreams. She does so much for me like getting up early in the morning to drop off to my events and making food for me.

You have broken records being the youngest competitor in several events, such as climbing Mt. Kilimanjaro, WWS Swim Around the Rock (3.5 mile swim around Alcatraz), WWS Touch and Go (2.5 mile swim to Alcatraz and back), and the WWS Bridge to Bridge. What do you want to say to others your age that are looking to compete?
They can break their comfort zone, and do amazing things by putting their mind to it.

Aside from being an accomplished athlete, you are a straight A+ student with a high school level in reading. What is your favorite subject?
My favorite subject is history because I love to see how people lived without technology and how conflicts were solved.

Favorite book?
The Outsiders by S. E. Hinton and A Tale for the Time Being by Ruth Ozeki are my favorite.  Both books taught me about cultures that were new for me. I enjoyed how both the books deal with real world problems that don’t always have a happy ending.

What are your plans for the future academically?
I was accepted to The Menlo School for high school where I will be able to explore different options to find which direction I would like to proceed in.

What is the longest swim you have done?
The top three longest swims I have accomplished are: Capitola Pier to Santa Cruz Pier (6.5 miles, no current), Golden Gate Bridge to Bay Bridge (6.2 miles, with current), and the Del Valle Lake Swim (6 miles, no current).

What is the hardest swim you have done?
The two hardest swims I have done are the Del Valle Lake Swim and the Midmar Six Mile swim. The Del Valle Lake Swim was my first long distance lake swim at twelve years old. The swim was very difficult because of the water temperature was hot and it tired me out just after the first 1.5 miles. The Midmar Six Mile swim was one of the toughest swims because I had to go against the currents in various areas along the swim and it was very exhausting. However, I was not able to finish the whole swim. I felt the sense of achievement after earning the silver medal for 4.5 miles.

What draws you to the open water?
The sense of a challenge and a way to push my limits. Not many people my age do open water swimming and after finishing a six mile swim or even just an Alcatraz swim, I feel very proud. It showed me that anything is possible when you put your mind to it.

What's your favorite food after swimming?
Indian Food!

Future Plans:

  • Monroe National Cup Race relay team in Washington
  • She is hoping to get into the Thames Bridge to Bridge Marathon Swim
  • And test the English Channel waters with WWS Coach Gary Bruce


Raising funds for Children International

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