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Chad HO
Sport Open Water Swimming
NOC South Africa   
Born21 Jun 1990 in Johannesburg, SAF
Height1.71 m
 Human Interest 
Further Personal Information
Partner Cassandra Wright, daughter Harley-Janne [2017]
Durban, RSA
Higher education
Education - Varsity College: Westville, RSA
Sport Specific Information
When and where did you begin this sport?
He was first in a swimming pool at 18 months old, and began competing in distance races at age 13.
Why this sport?
"It [learning to swim] was a safety mechanism so that I could play around the pool without my mother having to worry, as my two older sisters were big swimmers. I started as a pool swimmer but one day I took a bet with my coach, that if I did an open water swim I could miss training the next day. From there it just progressed, and I have enjoyed it so much that I have just stuck to it."
Club / Team
Action Swim Academy: South Africa
General Interest
King of Midmar [for his successes in the Midmar Mile race in South Africa]. (dailynews.openwaterswimming.com, 08 Feb 2015)
Memorable sporting achievement
Competing at the Olympic Games in 2008 and 2016. (proudlychinesesa.wixsite.com, 14 Nov 2017)
Most influential person in career
His mother. (openwaterswimming.com, 24 Sep 2020)
Hero / Idol
Australian swimmer Ian Thorpe, US swimmer Michael Phelps. (anthonygrote.com, 10 Feb 2015; speedo.co.za, 30 May 2011)
Sporting philosophy / motto
"Persistence is key, training to be an athlete is not easy and it does not just 'come' to you no matter how good you are. You need to stick through the tough times to get to the good times." (proudlychinesesa.wixsite.com, 14 Nov 2017)
Awards and honours
He has been named South African Swimmer of the Year on four occasions. (sabrinalove.co.za, 21 Aug 2016)
Other sports
He has represented South Africa in surf lifesaving. He won two medals at the 2012 World Championships in Adelaide, SA, Australia. (SportsDeskOnline, 18 Nov 2012)
In 2009 he became the first South African to win a medal in open water swimming at the world championships by claiming bronze in the 5km in Rome, Italy. In 2015 he became the first South African to win a gold medal in open water swimming at the world championships when he triumphed in the 5km in Kazan, Russian Federation. (sport24.co.za, 05 Aug 2015; SportsDeskOnline, 01 Aug 2015; gulfnews.com, 25 Jul 2015)
Other information
In September 2020 he announced his retirement via social media and took up a position working as a coach at Action Swim Academy in Durban, South Africa. "For 17 years, I have represented South Africa in the sport of swimming, specialising in open water swimming for the most part. I am ready to take on the next chapter of my life. I have spent the last few months [speaking in September 2020] gaining knowledge and qualified as a swimming coach whilst cooking up something great. For now, I am poolside and honoured to be working alongside my coach Alisdair Hatfield where I can hopefully encourage others to dream big and reach their own life goals as I did." (openwaterswimming.com, 24 Sep 2020; Action Swim Academy Facebook page, 12 Sep 2020; Instagram profile, 24 Sep 2020; Facebook page, 24 Sep 2020)

In September 2018 he began serving as a member of Swimming South Africa's Athletes' Committee. (swimmingworldmagazine.com, 05 Sep 2018; sabrinalove.co.za, 01 Jul 2016)

He studied for a time a bachelor degree in education at the University of South Africa [UNISA] in Pretoria, South Africa. (Facebook profile, 24 Sep 2020)

 Competition Highlights
World Championships
Rank Year Venue Event Result
23 2019 Gwangju, KOR 10km 1:49:37.9
15 2019 Gwangju, KOR 5km - Team Relay 56:52.9
11 2017 Budapest, HUN 5km 54:48.6
13 2017 Budapest, HUN 10km 1:52:29.9
12 2017 Budapest, HUN 5km - Team Relay 56:05.3
1 2015 Kazan, RUS 5km 55:17.6
19 2015 Kazan, RUS 10km 1:50:47.9
18 2015 Kazan, RUS 5km - Team Time Trial 1:00:31.2
8 2013 Barcelona, ESP 10km 1:49:26.3
4 2013 Barcelona, ESP 5km 53:33.7
11 2013 Barcelona, ESP 5km - Team Time Trial 56:34.7
20 2011 Shanghai, CHN 10km 1:54:58.6
  2011 Shanghai, CHN 5km - Team Time Trial  DNS
3 2009 Rome, ITA 5 km 56:41.9
23 2009 Rome, ITA 10km 1:53:13.1
21 2007 Melbourne, VIC, AUS 5km 57:42.1
African Championships
Rank Year Venue Event Result
4 2008 Johannesburg, RSA 800m Freestyle 8:30.35
2 2008 Johannesburg, RSA 1500m Freestyle 16:18.34
World Series
Rank Year Venue Event Result
94 2019   10km  
17 2019 Beau Vallon, SEY 10km 1:57:21.00
69 2018   10km  
29 2018 Abu Dhabi, UAE 10km 1:53:47.8
17 2018 Beau Vallon, SEY 10km 1:49:57.80
19 2016 Abu Dhabi, UAE 10km 1:48:13.50
13 2012 Santos, BRA 10km 2:11:53.09
7 2012 Viedma, ARG 10km 1:55:43
3 2011 Hong Kong, CHN 10km 1:58:17.40
6 2011 Setúbal, POR 10km 1:40:39.5
4 2011 Shantou, CHN 10km 1:54:29.75
1 2010   10km  
5 2010 Cancún, MEX 10km 2:08:06.3
1 2010 Hong Kong, CHN 10km 2:03:54.40
3 2010 Lac St. Jean, QC, CAN 10km 2:05:20.7
2 2010 Santos, BRA 10km 2:14:12.44
4 2010 Setúbal, POR 10km 2:01:12.8
4 2010 Shantou, CHN 10km 1:55:38.18
2 2010 Viedma, ARG 10km 1:51:00
4 2009 New York, NY, USA 10km 1:47:44.5
10 2009 Sharjah, UAE 10km 1:49:26.46
39 2007   10km  
African Championships
Rank Year Venue Event Result
1 2008 Germiston, RSA 5 km 58:39