The swim, which aims to raise funds for the Cook Islands Autism Society, has only been attempted three times in history and only two of those swims were successful.
First to complete the swim was New Zealand Hall of Fame swimmer Meda Mckenzie and the second was Cook Islander Don Carlaw. Both these swims took place in the 1980s and took over 17 hours.
Abel’s will be the first attempt in over 30 years.
A spokesman for the organisers said following the swim path would require significant planning and team work, and embracing the unknown.
“In addition to the physical and mental demands, Dan and his support crew will navigate unknown tides and all manner of sea life on this challenge, which could take anything from 9-18 hours.”
The swim will be conducted in accordance with Marathon Swimmers Federation rules, including not being able to touch the boat or anyone else throughout the swim and only wearing swim cap, togs and goggles.
“Open water swimming is one of the fastest growing sports in the world,” the spokesman said.
“The Cook Islands Marathon Swim will help to reconnect Australasia and the Pacific with its rich distance swimming heritage and inspire a new generation of open water swimmers.
“It will build the profile of the Cook Islands as a tourist destination, and position the region as a fantastic location for open water swimmers from across the globe and raise funds for the Cook Islands Autism Society.”
The health benefits of open water swimming include improving body awareness, reducing anxiety and building confidence.
In 2016 Abel co-founded the Fit and Abel Aqua Juniors special needs swim programme, to empower young people’s lives both in and out of the water.
Abel has a swimming CV spanning three decades. He swam the English Channel earlier this year, conquered the Cook Strait in 6 hours and 15 mins in 2013 and won first place in the 2.5km at the 2017 World Masters Games. He is head coach of Fit and Abel and founder of Real Swim Adventures, enabling hundreds of people from beginners to championship swimmers, realise their swim ambitions.