Jacques Amyot

From Openwaterpedia
Jacques Amyot and his statue commemorating his crossing of lac St-Jean

Jacques Amyot was a Canadian open water swimmer who was inducted as an Honour Swimmer in the International Marathon Swimming Hall of Fame in 1995. He died at the age of 93 on 7 September 2018 in Quebec City, where he was born.

Open Water Swimming Career Highlights

  • In 1939, he finished second in his first open water swimming event, a 3 km race in lac St-Jean when he was 14.
  • Amyot was the first person to swim across lac St-Jean in Quebec, Canada on 23 July 1955. Despite strong winds and rain, he covered the 26 km distance between Veauvert beach at the mouth of the Péribonka River and the city of Roberval in 11 hours 32 minutes 10 seconds. Seven swimmers signed up for the first 26 km Traversée internationale du lac St-Jean, but only Amyot finished.
  • On 8 August 1959, he finished 4th in the 30 km Traversée internationale du lac St-Jean in Roberval, Quebec, Canada in 11 hours 24 minutes 39 seconds.
  • On 4 August 1962, he finished 7th in the 30 km Traversée internationale du lac St-Jean in Roberval, Quebec, Canada in 13 hours 28 minutes 0 seconds.
  • He was a member of the World Professional Marathon Swimming Federation.
  • In 1954, at the age of 29, Amyot swam the 33 km separating Sainte-Anne-de-Beaupré and Québec City in Canada.
  • In 1955 several months after his achievement at Lac St-Jean, he plunged into the St Lawrence River and succeeded in swimming around Île d'Orléans, a distance of approximately 80 km.
  • He crossed to Île-aux-Lièvres at Rivière-du-Loup.
  • He swam from Baie Saint-Paul to Les Éboulements. Then after having dinner with the mayor, he crossed to L'Isle-aux-Coudres and he tried to return to Baie-Saint-Paul. It was the current that put an end to his ambitions.
  • On 17 July 1956, he became the first male Canadian to cross the 33.5 km English Channel from France to England in 13 hours 2 minutes.
  • On 29 August 1975, he crossed the 33.5 km English Channel from England to France in 12 hours 33 minutes at the age of 50. He set a record as the swimmer who had succeeded in 2 crossings separated by the greatest gap of time - 19 years.
  • Between these European achievements, Amyot pursued his career as an open water swimmer by increasing the number of his exploits and records, including covering the distance from Neuville to Québec City several times.
  • He returned to Lac St-Jean again for the 20th Traversée internationale du lac St-Jean on 4 August 4 1974.
  • In 1962, he finished 8th in the 37 km Atlantic City Around the Island Swim around Absecon Island in New Jersey in 14 hours 30 minutes.
  • During his career, Jacques Amyot won 8 Canadian national swim titles.
  • He was named to Quebec's Sports Hall of Fame in 1993.
  • He was named to Quebec's Swimming Hall of Fame in 1998.
  • He was made a Chevalier in the Ordre national du Québec in 2001.

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