Does Gregorio Paltrinieri Prefer Pool or Open Water Swimming?

Italian swimmer Gregorio Paltrinieri is one of 4 Italian swimmers who pre-qualified for the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games in pool swimming this week at the Italian Championships. Paltrinieri stamped his ticket via a 14:42.66 in the 1500 free, and will be joined by Margherita Panziera, Simona Quadarella, and Nicolo Martinenghi as swimmers for whom the pressure is off at the country’s next qualifying opportunity in March.

Paltrinieri is, however, already qualified for the Olympic Games in open water swimming after finishing 6th in the 10km event at the 2019 World Aquatics Championships. He has eased his way into open water swimming, including winning the US National titles in the 5km and 10km races earlier this year.

So that gives him at least 2 swims in Tokyo already, and he says that he’ll shoot for the qualifying standard in the 800 free in March.

Interview courtesy: Giusy Cisale

Paltrinieri is the defending Olympic gold medalist in the 1500 free, and says that this remains his favorite event. He’s also won 5 European Championships in the event (2 long course, 3 short course) and 3 World Championships (2 long course, 1 short course) in that race. That includes gold at the European Short Course Championships earlier this month.

In This Story

Leave a Reply

Notify of

oldest most voted
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
3 years ago

At last Worlds the 1500 free was the last of a tough series of events for Greg: 10 km and relay in OW, 800 (clear win while Wellbrock missed the final) and 1500 free in the pool. In Tokyo the races in the pool will be swum before the 10 km OW and Greg’s emphasys will be particularly on 1500 free. So it will be another (intriguing) story among Paltrinieri, Wellbrock, Romanchuk and, who knows?, Grgic.

3 years ago

I will be rooting for him to pull a historic double: gold in the 1500 AND open water in the same Olympics. If he wins the 1500, he’d join Burton, Salnikov, Perkins, and G Hackett as 2-time winners, but surmount them all if he wins the OW. Extra special if he sets the WR in the 1500 and clears the name of Sun the cheater off the books.

Casas 100 back gold in Tokyo
Reply to  BaldingEagle
3 years ago

Wellbrock just won the 1500-10k double at the World Championships this year, so…if someone’s gonna make history, I think the chance of Wellbrock is slightly better. And if I have to bet on who will break the world record, I would rather put my money in Wellbrock than in Paltrinieri, too.

About Braden Keith

Braden Keith

Braden Keith is the Editor-in-Chief and a co-founder/co-owner of He first got his feet wet by building The Swimmers' Circle beginning in January 2010, and now comes to SwimSwam to use that experience and help build a new leader in the sport of swimming. Aside from his life on the InterWet, …

Read More »