Double World Champion Ahmed Hafnaoui Is Entered at 2024 World Championships

Olympic gold medalist and World Champion Ahmed Hafnaoui is expected to race at February’s World Aquatics Championships in Doha Qatar, according to World Aquatics.

The organization posted the field for the men’s 400 free based on entries received as of January 24 with Hafnaoui at the top of the pile. The the top 8 seeds:

  1. Ahmed Hafnaoui, Tunisia
  2. Lukas Maertens, Germany
  3. Elijah Winnington, Australia
  4. Guilherme de Costa, Brazil
  5. Woomin Kim, South Korea
  6. Felix Auboeck, Austria
  7. Antonio Djakovic, Switzerland
  8. Petar Mitsin, Bulgaria

Hafnaoui was one of the major breakthrough stories of the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games across all sports, winning gold in the 400 meter freestyle. After that, he moved to the United States to begin studying and training at the University of Indiana.

At last year’s World Championships, Hafnaoui won gold in the 800 free and 1500 free, the latter coming in a Championship and Africa Records while training with the Hoosiers, though as an academic non-qualifier he did not compete for the collegiate varsity as he was required to sit out a year.

After Worlds, he moved to begin training with Mark Schubert at The Swim Team in California as part of what has become one of the world’s deepest men’s distance training groups over the last 6 months. At least one member of that training group, Will Gallant, recently withdrew from the World Championships.

World Aquatics in a separate post also confirmed the top 3 seeds (as of January 24th) in the men’s 1500 with Hafnaoui atop that list as well. Also on that list are Florian Wellbrock of Germany and the World Record holder in the 1500 in short course Daniel Wiffen from Ireland.

World Aquatics has not yet released the top seeds in the 800, but it’s likely that Hafanoui will swim that race as well.

While much has been made about potential absences from the World Championships, the 400 free field laid out above means that 7 out of 8 finalists from the 2023 championships (the exception being Sam Short of Australia, the gold medalist) will return for the 2024 edition in this race.

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3 months ago

If he swims in Doha, Ahmed Hafnaoui will be the first male swimmer since Sun Yang in 2013 Worlds to win 400-800-1500.

Grant Hackett also did it in 2005 in addition to 200 free silver.

Last edited 3 months ago by Imonar
Reply to  Imonar
3 months ago

The 800 was first introduced in 2001, and lead to a phenomenal race between Thorpe and Hackett. In the previous WC the 400 winner was almost always the same as the 1500 winner. If the 800 had been introduced then, I believe that the 400 – 800 – 1500 would have happened quite regularly. In 1975, Tim Shaw won 200 – 400 – 1500.

Reply to  ooo
3 months ago

Kieren Perkins would have absolutely won 400-800-1500 in 1994 Rome.

He won 400 in WR in Rome and 1500.

A few weeks earlier in Commonwealth Games he won 1500 and broke 2 WR in the same swim (1500 and 800)

3 months ago

when are full entry lists going to be released?

Reply to  Braden Keith
3 months ago

Entries need to release so Caesar’s can drop their betting odds

Reply to  BRD
3 months ago

literally exactly what i’m waiting for

3 months ago

Can’t believe the 2024 Aquatics WCs (the WCs no one wants) start next week…….

Reply to  Torchbearer
3 months ago

No one wants to be a World Champion or WC medalist? I doubt that. Sure looks good for sponsorships.

Reply to  Torchbearer
3 months ago

As a concept I think this event is silly.

But honestly once it starts I will just as into it as every other world champs haha

3 months ago

I wonder if Carson gave any thought to doing the 400 (free). Not that he could truly challenge the contenders, but he has expressed that he loves the event and if he was ever going to do it at a championship meet, this seems like the one.

Nick B
3 months ago

I’m intrigued. I tend to think he will swim. Interested to see any alterations in pacing and stroke technique. IMHO, I didn’t see many flaws last year. He’s extraordinary with tons of upside. My only concern is that he might’ve been better off training in Indiana instead of heading off to California.

3 months ago

If he does show, then wonder why Gallant scratched?

3 months ago

I’d want to hear it from Ahmed himself if he’s going b/c right now idk if he actually will with how things have gone over the past few months in terms of health and getting sick. But I do hope he does go though.

3 months ago

Rooting for South Korea to win the 4×2

Reply to  Aquajosh
3 months ago

Same but China will give them a run for their money

Scuncan Dott V2
Reply to  Boz
3 months ago

Don’t forget GB – they’ll likely have Richards, Scott, Mcmillan and Litchfield(x2) for that relay.

Last edited 3 months ago by Scuncan Dott V2
Reply to  Boz
3 months ago

Is Pan Zhanle swimming?

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, …

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