We wanted to shine the spotlight on Fleur Sohtz, a member of the AGUA Masters Swim Team at our Upper East Side campus who has achieved the extraordinary. Fleur has successfully completed a solo crossing of the Catalina Channel, widely recognized as one of the most grueling open-water marathon swims in the world!


The Catalina Channel, a daunting stretch of approximately 22 miles between Santa Catalina Island and Los Angeles, California, holds pride of place in the world of open-water swimming. Despite the frigid temperatures of the Catalina Channel's waters, swimmers who are gunning for an official record can't use wetsuits or any other swimming aids. To make things even more spine-tingling, the safest time to cross the channel is during the dark California night.


Unfortunately, Fleur faced some of the toughest currents the waters around Santa Catalina have seen this season. Nevertheless, she kicked off her swim just an hour before midnight on June 18 and, after powering through the night, emerged victorious on the morning of June 19, 2023. Her AGUA Masters team members kept the energy high, sending a cascade of encouragement and cheers to her and her onsite crew via a live chat throughout the swim.


The Catalina Channel is part of the legendary Triple Crown – a series of three daunting open-water swims that includes English Channel crossing and the Manhattan Island Marathon Swim.


Fleur had already completed the Manhattan Island Marathon Swim in August of 2021. Now that she has two out of three swims in the Triple Crown under her belt, she has her sights set on conquering the English Channel in August of 2025. But next up is something more local. Fleur plans to tackle the Rose Pitonof swim from Manhattan to Coney Island in August of this year.


So, let's hear it for Fleur! Her summer of epic adventures continues, and we couldn't be more thrilled to cheer her on.