2015 Mare Nostrum, Barcelona Preview: Peaty and van der Burgh ready for round 2


The annual Mare Nostrum series enters its second leg on Wednesday, with participants moving to Barcelona, Spain after a weekend stop in Canet, France.

Mare Nostrum is a fast-paced, lucrative tour of the Mediterranean, with two-day meets in France, Spain and Monaco spread out over just 8 days.

This year’s tour will draw some of the top names in all of swimming, from the world’s biggest swimming nations, including Hungary, Great Britain, Denmark, the Netherlands, Japan, South Africa and the United States.


The Mare Nostrum series has a complex and thorough system of prize money, with athletes earning money both for the individual stops and for the series as a whole.

Mare Nostrum Series Prizes

At the end of the series, each swimmer’s best overall swim (in terms of FINA points) from each meet gets added together for an overall series score. The top 4 men and top 4 women all earn prize money:

  • 1st: 7000€ ($7,782)
  • 2nd: 2000€ ($2,223)
  • 3rd: 1000€ ($1,112)
  • 4th: 500€ ($556)

Estimated converted U.S. Dollar amounts are rounded to the nearest dollar.

Individual Meet prizes

Each event pays out prize money to the top 3 finishers:

  • 1st: 330€ ($367)
  • 2nd: 180€ ($200)
  • 3rd: 90€ ($100)

Meet and series records yield bonuses:

  • Mare Nostrum record: 600€ ($667)
  • Meet record: 600€ ($667)

On top of all that, each stop runs 50s of each stroke in one-on-one, knockout bracket fashion. The qualifiers for the semi-finals and final all earn money:

  • 1st (Final winner): 600€ ($667)
  • 2nd (Final loser): 300€ ($334)
  • 3rd (Consolation winner): 100€ ($111)
  • 4th (Consolation loser): 50€ ($56)

Storylines to Watch

Just a few of the may notable storylines to watch in Barcelona:

1. Peaty vs van der Burgh rematch: Once again, one of the major highlights should be Great Britain’s Adam Peaty taking on former world record-holder Cameron van der Burgh in the breaststrokes. Peaty won the 100 in Canet, where Japan’s Yasuhiro Koseki turned out to be his toughest competitor. American Nic Fink joins the start lists in Barcelona as he gears up for this summer’s World Championships.

2. No more SwimMAC: The biggest names to drop off the start lists are most of the Americans from SwimMAC. That group includes Ryan Lochte and Arianna Vanderpool-Wallace, among others. Lochte’s absence opens up the men’s IM races in a big way, with Japan’s Kosuke Hagino also not entered. That makes Hungary’s David Verraszto one of the top threats.

3. Women’s breaststrokes: The only two SwimMAC names still entered are Micah Lawrence and Mark Weber. Lawrence still competing means the women’s breaststrokes remain loaded, with entrants like Kanako Watanabe, Rikke Moller Pedersen, Kierra Smith and Lawrence. The 200, in particular, should be tough, with most of the breaststrokers in attendance being primarily 200 breaststrokers.

4. Who can challenge Katinka Hosszu? Hungary’s Katinka Hosszu will swim her usual loaded event lineup, and should have great shots at multiple wins. Challenging her in versatility will be Great Britain’s Hannah Miley, another tough competitor who excels over multiple strokes and distances.

5. Women’s sprints: Most of the top women’s sprinters from the series opener are continuing on to Barcelona, which leaves the 50 and 100 frees loaded up. The Dutch might be the biggest threat as a federation, with Femke Heemskerk, Ranomi Kromowidjojo and Inge Dekker, but it was Denmark’s Jeanette Ottesen who won the 50 in Canet. Don’t sleep on Great Britain’s Francesca Halsall or Japan’s Miki Uchida, either.

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About Jared Anderson

Jared Anderson

Jared Anderson swam for nearly twenty years. Then, Jared Anderson stopped swimming and started writing about swimming. He's not sick of swimming yet. Swimming might be sick of him, though. Jared was a YMCA and high school swimmer in northern Minnesota, and spent his college years swimming breaststroke and occasionally pretending …

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