On Labor Day, US endurance swimmer Diana Nyad made history when she completed a 53-hour swim from Cuba to Florida — but skepticism has surfaced surrounding her accomplishment. Based on her progress, which was tracked online via GPS, other long-distance swimmers are questioning a particularly speedy portion of Nyad's swim, wondering whether or not she used the rescue boat to her advantage by holding on or hopping on board. One navigator from the boat, Janet Hinkle, insists that Nyad didn't cheat, and another added that the current was working in her favor, allowing her to move more quickly.
This was Nyad's fifth attempt at completing the 110-mile swim, following attempts in 1978, 2011, and 2012. Before Nyad left Havana on Aug. 31, the 64-year-old swimmer said, "I admit there's an ego rush," adding, "If I — three days from now, four days from now — am still somehow bringing the arms up and I see the shore . . . I am going to have a feeling that no one yet on this planet has ever had." As she arrived on the shore of Key West, FL, on Sept. 2 along with her 35-person safety team, she was surrounded by crowds, who cheered and snapped pictures of the incredible moment. "I have three messages," she said when she reached the sand. "One is, we should never, ever give up. Two is, you're never too old to chase your dream. Three is, it looks like a solitary sport, but it is a team."
She gained support from a few big names, too, including President Barack Obama, who tweeted, "Congratulations to @DianaNyad. Never give up on your dreams." Hillary Clinton also chimed in on Twitter, writing, "Flying to 112 countries is a lot until you consider swimming between 2. Feels like I swim with sharks — but you actually did it! Congrats!"