The 2019 Pan American Games have been awarded to Lima, Peru, according to Alex Pussieldi, the author of “Blog do Coach,” the world’s foremost source for Central and South American swimming news.
Swimming is one of 28 sports at this multi-sport event, and while for USA Swimming, it is not treated as the primary “operation gold” even in pre-Olympic years, for half of those 28 sports (by 2015 count), it is an Olympic qualifier. That means big business and big money for the host.
Lima will serve as the 18th host of the event that begin in 1951, and the first hosted in Peru. This event has travel to many different parts of the western hemisphere, with an intriguing hosting diversity.
There are 42 countries, all in the western hemisphere, whose National Olympic Committees are recognized by the Pan American Sports Organization and compete at the Games.
Other recent hosts:
- 1999 – Winnipeg, Canada
- 2003 – Santo Domingo, DR
- 2007 – Rio de Janiero
- 2011 – Guadalajara, Mexico
- 2015 – Toronto, Canada
- 2019 – Lima, Peru
Though many countries send their top athletes to this event, the United States rarely does the same, as it always falls in a conflict with the important pre-Olympic World Championship meet. In 2015, FINA even moved the dates of the World Championships to try and allow more top swimmers to do both events, but USA Swimming says they still plan to keep the same selection criteria.
The bid included a plan for the aquatic events to be held in “Cluster Two” at Campo de Marte, with the open water swim to take place in Callao. Campo de Marte is a huge park and green space that includes the outdoor pool used for the 2011 World Junior Swimming Championships.