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Reston Masters' Jim McDonnell Lake Swims

Sun May 26, 2024 Reston, VA 20191 US
Countdown to Race Day


Reston Masters Swim Team is pleased to announce the 36th edition of the Jim McDonnell Lake Swims.

Sanctioned by Potomac Valley LMSC for US Masters Swimming, Sanction#: 104-W001

The swims will be held on Sunday, May 26, 2024 at Lake Audubon in Reston, VA. (Directions)

Race Information

Course Map: 1-mile open water course (map). Swim counterclockwise beginning at Lake Audubon Pool end.

The races will be started using a rolling start: Instructions will be provided for swimmers during the briefing prior to the race. Swimmers will be seeded fast to slow using the 1650 yard time provided at registration.  All participants will wear timing chips.

Race Day Timeline:

  • 6:00am: Check-in opens (all races)
  • 7:30am: 1-Mile Line-up and Safety Briefing
  • 8:00am: 1-Mile race begin
  • 9:00am: 2-Mile check-in closes
  • 9:15am: 2 Mile Line-up and Safety Briefing
  • 9:45am: 2-Mile race begins
  • 11:30am: Race course clean-up begins

Swimmers may enter both the 1-mile and 2-mile swims:

  • 1-mile Race: CAT I & CAT II divisions; time limit 50 minutes.
  • 2-mile Race: CAT I and CAT II divisions; time limit 90 minutes. All 2-mile contestants who have not completed the first 1-mile lap within 45 minutes will be directed to exit the course as they pass the boat ramp.

Temperature Restrictions: No wetsuits or heat retaining swimwear in water above 78 degrees. If swimmers are not able to meet the requirements for CAT I swimwear, then they may swim in CAT II using swimwear configurations allowed in CAT II (see Swimwear Categories below).

Water Quality: Reston lakes are managed by Reston Association, which does not maintain the lakes to swimming standards. Approximately one week before the race, RA will test the water and if deemed unsafe, RMST will cancel the event.

Scoring Divisions for Races: Scoring divisions are divided by overall, gender, five year age groups and swimwear category. All scoring divisions in a race swim simultaneously and are scored separately. You may swim in only one scoring division for each race distance. You may change your Swimwear Category at the starting line.

Swimwear Categories: USMS Category I (CAT I): swimsuits shall be made from textile materials; may not be buoyant or heat retaining; for both men and women, the swimsuit shall not cover the neck and shall not extend past the shoulder nor below the ankles. USMS Category II (CAT II): all other swimsuits, including wetsuits; no restriction on coverage. There are other differences, which you should be familiar with, so there are no surprises on race day. Swimwear categories are defined in Article 303.4 Swimwear for Open Water Events (, 2022 USMS Rule Book, pg 70.) You may change your Swimwear Category at the starting line.

USMS, Local, State and National COVID-19 protocols will be followed.

Register Now!

Entry Information

Regular registration closes on Sunday May 19th, 2024 at 11:59 PM EDT.

No entry changes after entry closing date. This includes any new entries, added swims, or changed entry information.

Eligibility: Minimum participation age is 18 by race event date. Swimmers must be registered with USMS or be a Masters swimming member of a World Aquatics member federation or obtain a USMS One Event registration (OEVT).

Entry limit per race is a maximum of 300 swimmers.

Register Now!

Race Fee Schedule

This year we are offering early-bird pricing and we will also be extending our regular registration window with last-minute pricing. The fees and registration periods are:

Registration Period1 Mile2 Mile1+2 MileBeginsEnds
Early-Bird Pricing$80$80$120January 1stJanuary 15th @ Midnight EST
Regular Pricing$105$105$155January 16thMay 19th @ Midnight EDT
Last-Minute Pricing$155$155$200May 20thMay 24th @ Midnight EDT

One Event Registration: The shopping cart will show an additional fee of $20 for all registrations, this fee will be discounted following successful USMS or World Aquatics verification

Refunds, Transfers, and Deferrals: There are no refunds, no deferrals of fees to next year and no selling/transfer of slots in swims. Swimmers will be required to confirm agreement with this policy before submitting their entry.

Registration Protection Insurance: New this year, we have added the option to purchase Protecht RegShield registration protection insurance. Registration protection insurance can provide peace of mind to participants who register early and are concerned a future covered reason such as an injury or family emergency may prevent them from participating in the event.

Register Now!

Additional Information

Individual Awards: Awards will be given to 1st through 3rd place for age group scoring divisions.

T-shirts: Each 1-mile or 2-mile race participant will receive a maximum of one t-shirt with their entry.

Virginia Triple-Dip Award: New this year, we will be joining the organizers of the John Shrum Memorial Chris Greene Lake Cable Swim and the Lake Moomaw Open Water Swim to present awards to athletes who complete an event in each of the following 3 Virginia races. You must complete: 

  1. The Jim McDonnell 1 or 2 mile swim (Sunday May 26th, Reston, VA)
  2. The John Shrum Memorial Chris Greene 1 or 2 mile cable swim (Saturday June 1st, 2024, Charlottesville, VA. Registration opens early 2024)
  3. The Lake Moomaw 1 mile swim (Saturday August 17, 2024, Covington, VA. Registration opens March/April 2024)

Food: Individually wrapped snack/energy bars, fruit, and water will be served. Please bring your own food and water as necessary.

Host Hotel: Courtyard Dulles Airport Herndon/Reston.  We have a negotiated rate of $109 per night

  • Use this link to book: Jim McDonnell Lake Swim Rooms
  • Or call 1-800-321-2211 and use the reference: "Jim McDonnell Lake Swim Rooms"
  • Start Date: Saturday, May 25, 2024
  • End Date: Monday, May 27, 2024
  • Last Day to Book: Thursday, April 25, 2024

Benefit: The Jim McDonnell Lake Swims donate a portion of the event proceeds to local charities.

Historical Water Temperatures

Lake Audubon's temperature fluctuates during the day and is dependent on sunshine and rainfall.  The 2-Mile race held at 9:45AM on 5/29/2016 is the only race in recent history where the water was above 78º and wetsuits were illegal.  Wetsuits were legal for the 2016 1-Mile race at 8:00AM.  We typically will publish water temperatures starting 2 weeks before the race, temperatures are taken at around 9:00AM and will be posted here.

An interactive version of this chart is available on Google Docsbest viewed in landscape mode,

Additional Fees

USMS OEVT Fee: $20.00

Race Contact Info

If you have any questions about this race, click the button below.

Silver Sponsors

Bronze Sponsors


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