His first marathon swim was an attempt of the English Channel in 2006, but he was unsuccessful and was pulled unconscious from the water after 12 hours 7 minutes. However, he has gone on to complete the 28.5-mile (48 km) Manhattan Island Marathon Swim in 2010, the 38 km Tampa Bay Marathon Swim in 2012, the 20 km Swim Around Key West in 2012, 42.2 km Lake Ontario Crossing in 2012, as well as swimming 100m breaststroke at the 1988 Olympic Trials.
The Vice President, Corporate Treasury Solutions at HSBC Bank Canada is a Canadian marathon swimming visionary who acts as race director, organizer and founder of the Lake Ontario Swim Team, or L.O.S.T. Swimming, a growing open water swimming and triathlon group in Oakville, Ontario, Canada. He also hosts the annual 3.8 km L.O.S.T. Race and the 2010 Masters Swimming Canada 10k National Championship.
Kent started LOST Swimming in 2006 while training for his English Channel attempt. After doing all of his open water training for the English Channel in Lake Ontario, Kent realized what many great swimmers from by-gone eras once knew, that Lake Ontario is a great place to swim. In an effort to try and bring back open water swimming to one of the most famous open bodies of water, he started LOST Swimming.
L.O.S.T. Swimming started with a handful of triathletes, a few open water swimmers, and Kent and his family, all competitive swimmers too. In the summer of 2007, after his English Channel attempt, it wasn’t called “LOST Swimming”, as one of the originals put it, it was called “let’s meet at the lighthouse and go for a swim”.
But gradually, word of mouth spread and the group grew. By the third summer, in 2008, the group was up to about 25 people and it was decided that there should be a race… and the ‘LOST Race’ was born. The first race included just 8 swimmers, but was enough fun that it was decided that it would become an annual race. The race started (and still does) from the foot of Maple Grove Drive for 3.8 km to the Lighthouse Pier in downtown Oakville. In order to include open water swimmers and triathletes, the distance was set equal to the swim portion of an Ironman triathlon. The course is a safe and very scenic swim as it goes parallel to the shore, past dozens of multi-million dollar homes in one of Canada’s most beautiful and affluent neighborhoods, South-east Oakville.
Word continued to spread and by 2012 LOST had become a registered Masters team, with over 200 paid members, over 500 people receiving the weekly mailing and the LOST Race now had grown to 94 swimmers. Saturday morning swims have now reached as many as 88 swimmers and has had visitors from all over Canada, the US, the UK, Ireland, Italy and Australia. The LOST season runs from late May to mid-September, in water that can range in temperature from 45F to 75F.
LOST has grown to include the LOST Travel Team, which has had LOST swimmers swim in the Tampa Bay Marathon Swim, the FKCC Swim-Around-Key-West, the Manhattan Island Marathon Swim, the Governor's Island Swim, the 25 km U.S. Masters Swimming National Championship, and the Ederle Swim.
Kent will also attempt to become the third LOST Swimmer to complete a Lake Ontario Crossing. Melanie Price was the first in 2011 and Madhu Nagaraja completed the Crossing just 2 weeks before Kent. Price also established the LOST Route, which goes from Port Dalhousie to Oakville, and is exactly the same distance as a running marathon, 42.2 km or 26.2 miles. Kent completed the LOST Marathon Swim on 14 August 2012 in 20 hours 52 minutes.
For more information or to sign up for the weekly email updates see LOSTswimming.com
- L.O.S.T. Swimming Official Website
- Rob Kent Swims Without The Yellow Bracelet
- Alex McMillin, Always Helping While L.O.S.T.
- These People Don't Look LOST, But They Are
- Marathon Swimming
- Open Water Swimming
- Daily News of Open Water Swimming
- World Open Water Swimming Association
- Thrice As Nice, Swimming Across Lake Ontario
- Dealing With Insomnia Before Getting In The Open Water