Swimming across the English Channel — the 21-mile-long body of water separating southern England from northern France — is no easy feat. In addition to the strong ocean currents, swimmers also have to endure temperatures that can range from a chilly 64 degrees Fahrenheit (18 degrees Celsius) to a near-freezing 42 degrees Fahrenheit (6 degrees Celsius). However, don't tell that to Sarah Thomas. The 37-year-old American recently became the first person ever to swim across the length of the treacherous stretch of water, which links the southern part of the North Sea to the Atlantic Ocean, not once, but four times non-stop!
Though Bianca Andreescu was expected to be a formidable opponent, it was Serena Williams who was favored to win the US Open Tennis Championships finals in New York City on September 7, 2019. The 37-year-old US tennis phenom is after all an experienced veteran, with 23 Grand Slam titles to her name. Meanwhile, prior to 2019, her 19-year-old challenger had never even reached the finals of the four prestigious tournaments — the US Open, the Australian Open, Wimbledon and the French Open — that comprise the Grand Slam. But in a true-life underdog story, Bianca managed to oust Serena with a resounding 6-3, 7-5 victory in less than two hours.
On Wednesday, September 11, 2019, Americans will commemorate the 18th anniversary of one of the most tragic days in modern US history. On September 11, 2001, 19 members of the Islamic extremist organization Al Qaeda conducted a series of brutal, well-orchestrated attacks on American soil. In addition to cutting short the lives of 2,977 innocent people, the tragedy also set in motion events that would change the course of life both in the US and worldwide.
Once considered America's national pastime, baseball is on a decline, especially among young Americans who seem to prefer more active sports such as football and basketball. But in Finland, the game's popularity is at an all-time high, especially in rural areas, where it is a favorite in schools and fans in stadiums often outnumber the local population. The reason? Pesäpallo, the Finnish version of baseball, is a faster-paced game that is exciting enough to keep fans of all ages at the edge of their seats!
Fiona Kolbinger, a 24-year-old with little experience in competitive cycling, took the world by surprise when she became the first female to win the ultra-endurance Transcontinental Race on August 6, 2019. The cancer researcher from Germany outrode 225 men and 39 women to complete the approximately 2,485 miles (4,000 km) race from Bulgaria to France in 10 days, two hours, and 48 minutes. Even more impressive, Kolbinger crossed the finish line almost 11 hours ahead of the second-place winner, Ben Davies of the United Kingdom.
From July 26 to July 28, 2019, New York's Arthur Ashe Stadium hosted the biggest video game competition of all time — the Fortnite World Cup. The event, witnessed by a live audience of over 23,000 and more than 2 million fans online, was the culmination of a 10-week qualification process that whittled down the approximately 40 million hopefuls to the final 200 competitors. In a true testament to the game's universal appeal, the contestants hailed from 34 countries and ranged in age from 13 to 24.
The US women's national soccer team's quest for the 2019 FIFA World Cup began on June 11, 2019, with a resounding 13-0 win over Thailand. In addition to being the largest margin of victory ever in a women’s World Cup match, the score also set a new record for the most goals in a single World Cup game — for both men and women. The team's incredible journey ended almost a month later on July 7, 2019, with a thrilling 2-0 victory against the Netherlands.
Most people would find it hard to label a computer infected with six of the worst-known viruses, which combined have cost the world $95 billion, as art. However, Chinese digital artist Guo O Dong strongly believes his malware loaded "Persistence of Chaos"— a Samsung NC10, which runs on Windows XP — is a masterpiece. What's more, the creator claims to have sold the "artwork" to an anonymous buyer for an astounding $1.345 million in an online auction on May 25, 2019.