Betty Brussel Breaks Three Age Group World Records at Age 99


Photo Courtesy: Swimming Canada

by DAN D’ADDONA — SWIMMING WORLD MANAGING EDITOR

29 January 2024, 08:18pm

At 99 years old, Betty Brussel is still in the water two days a week training.

The Dutch-born British Columbia resident simply put her love for the sport in an interview with the Washington Post: “When I swim, I feel so happy”

At 99, she broke three world records for the 100-104 age group (which she is a part of because of the year of her birth, 1924). She swims Canadian Masters for the White Rock Wave Swim Team.

Brussel broke the 400-meter free style record by finishing in 12 minutes, 50 seconds, shattering the previous age group world record by close to four minutes.

She also broke the 50 backstroke record in 1:24 and the 50 breaststroke in 1:52.

According to the Washington Post story, Brussel grew up in the Netherlands as the second born of 12 children and looked after her siblings during World War II.

Brussel and her late husband immigrated to Canada in 1959 where she became a seamstress.

She got in the water for the first time in a competition in 1991. Since then, she has set several records and will be the subject of an upcoming documentary, according to the Post report.

“I’m very fortunate that I’m able to do all this stuff, and I have good health,” Betty Brussel told the Post.

She will turn 100 in July.

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