2017 Open Water World Championship Preview

While swimming at the World Championships in Budapest doesn’t get underway until the 23rd of July, the other events will all begin next week, with things kicking off on Friday the 14th with diving and synchronized swimming prelims. Open water swimming will then get underway on Saturday, with the men’s 5k up first.

Men’s Events

In the 5k, defending world champion Chad Ho of South Africa will be competing, though 2015 silver and bronze medalists Rob Muffels (GER) and Matteo Furlan (ITA) will not. American David Heron will be back after finishing 6th in Kazan, and he’ll be joined by 2012 pool Olympian Andrew Gemmell.

A few other pool swimmers will be in the mix: Timothy Shuttleworth of Great Britain, Jack McLoughlin of Australia, Eric Hedlin of Canada, and David Brandl of Austria.

In the 10k we’ll see 2015 world champion Jordan Wilimovsky square-off with 2016 Olympic champ Ferry Weertman, who was also 2nd to Wilimovsky in Kazan. The American managed to finish 4th in the pool in the 1500 free and then follow-up with a 5th in the 10k in Rio, but has opted to completely focus on the 10k this summer, sitting out of the U.S. World Trials at the end of June.

Olympic bronze medalist Marc-Antoine Olivier will also be in the mix, as ten of the top eleven finishers in Rio will be competing. The only one missing is Spyridon Gianniotis of Greece, who won silver in Rio at the age of 36, the oldest man in the field.

Other 10k entries include 2012 bronze medalist Richard Weinberger of Canada, American Brendan Casey, and Brit Jack Burnell, who was disqualified both in Rio and at U.S. Open Water Nationals in May.

Italy’s Simone Ruffini will defend his world title in the men’s 25k, and will be joined by the likes of countryman Matteo Furlan who won bronze, and well-known Hungarian Gergely Gyurta.

Tunisian Ous Mellouli, who famously won 1500 Olympic gold in 2008 and followed up with 10k open water gold in 2012 (plus 1500 bronze) is entered to swim all three distances, but has announced that he’s withdrawn from the championships due to a training injury.

Women’s Events

The women’s 5k will feature defending champion Haley Anderson of the U.S., alongside teammate Ashley Twichell who was 6th back in 2015 but has made significant strides since. Twichell won silver in the 800 free at the 2016 Short Course World Championships, and then blew away the field at Open Water Nationals in the 10k for the win. She was 3rd in the 5k behind Anderson and Italian Rachele Bruni who won’t swim the 5k but will be in the 10k in Budapest.

2015 silver medalist Kalliopi Araouzou of Greece will be there, as will 10k Olympic champ Sharon van Rouwendaal who was 4th in the 5k in Kazan. Another notable name competing is Australian Kiah Melverton, who’s known more for her abilities in the pool.

The 10k will feature seven of the top ten from Rio, including gold and silver medalists van Rouwendaal and Bruni. 2015 world champion Aurelie Muller is in the lineup, as are the Americans Twichell and Anderson.

van Rouwendaal and Muller are also slated to swim the 25k, as are all three medalists from 2015: Ana Marcela CunhaAnna Olasz, and Angela MaurerBecca Mann and Cathryn Salladin will be the American representatives.

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6 years ago

James, just take a look to Kristof Rasovszky on 10k. Junior World Champion in 2016, and lets see his results this year. (e.g. Setubal 10k 1:29:50.97) Otherwise he knows Lake Balaton the most.

Reply to  Brownish
6 years ago

Did they really swim the whole 10k in Setubal this year? 1:29 is more than 20 min faster than the usual times of around 1:50 including Olympics quali from last year at the same place.

Reply to  tkrisz
6 years ago

I don’t know, it’s the official time, written 10000 m.

Reply to  Brownish
6 years ago

What you’re saying is he swam a whole 10k averaging under a minute per 100 meters. You do realize that the world record in the 1500 is only averaging :58 right?

Reply to  Swammer
6 years ago

I see what you meen, but not I said, the official result said it.

Human Ambition
Reply to  Swammer
6 years ago

There was tide change in the middle of the race which meant that the middle two laps went very very fast.

samuel huntington
6 years ago

3,2,1 time to go for Worlds!!!!!

Reply to  samuel huntington
6 years ago

Here is Friday BTW. 20 hours and Open Ceremony.

6 years ago

who are you picking to medal for each race? OW counts in our total medal count

About James Sutherland

James Sutherland

James swam five years at Laurentian University in Sudbury, Ontario, specializing in the 200 free, back and IM. He finished up his collegiate swimming career in 2018, graduating with a bachelor's degree in economics. In 2019 he completed his graduate degree in sports journalism. Prior to going to Laurentian, James swam …

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