Swimmers Antonio Abertondo and Brojen Das. Peter Frane in the background

Antonio Abertondo

Antonio Abertondo of Argentina greeting Brojen Das (with glasses). Peter Frayne, a Channel Swimming Association observer, in the background. 

Abertondo was the first person to complete a two-way non-stop swim of the English Channel, in 1961. His time for the swim was 43 hours 10 minutes. Abertondo was sponsored by the Argentine Government.

Abertondo made one unsuccessful attempt – on Aug 7th 1950 (time 25 hours), giving up  one mile from England. 

His other successes were; the Aug 22 1950 and Aug 16 1951 Daily Mail races. He was placed 8th and 14th; and the Aug 21 1954 Billy Butlin race. He was placed sixth.

In 1950 he swam 168 miles down the river Plate in 61 hrs. He once swam 291 miles down the Mississippi River in 3 days, 9 hours.

Brojen Das (1927 – 1998) was a Bengali swimmer, the first Asian to swim across the English Channel and the first person to cross it six times.

Brojen was born in the Kuchiamora village of Bikrampur, Bangladesh. On his initiative, the East Pakistan Sports Federation introduced an annual swimming competition in Dhaka in 1953.

He was invited to take part in the Billy Butlin English Channel Swimming Competition in 1958. As a part of his training he swam the Shitalakshya River, a distance of 46 miles starting from Narayanganj to Chandpur. Prior to the Channel competition, he also swam the Mediterranean from Capri to Naples.He won the Channel race in August 1958

Brojen crossed the English Channel a total of 6 times from 1958 to 1961.

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