FINA Champions Series Will Be Hosted in US, Hungary, and China

The United States, China, and Hungary have been tabbed as hosts for the first edition of the new FINA Champions Swim Series that will launch in 2019.  The three-meet event that will offer over $3.9 million in prize money was announced during FINA meetings in December in what seemed to be a direct response to the rise of the International Swimming League (ISL).

According to Russian Swimming Federation president Vladimir Salnikov, the 50-meter meets will include only final heats (no prelims) and only World champions, Olympic champions, World Record holders, and other highly-ranked international swimmers. The competition is expected to be held from March to May of 2019. Each meet will take place over 3 days.

SwimSwam has spoken to several high-level elite athletes, who indicated interest in the series because of the significant prize money on offer, but most of them said that they would only participate if the meets were easy to travel to. That’s because of the timing ahead of the 2019 FINA World Aquatics Championships in Gwangju, South Korea, which will be held from July 12th-28th.

FINA has indicated that they wouldn’t approve many ISL events because they conflicted with the FINA competition calendar, though they haven’t yet mentioned interference with the individual training calendars of athletes.

The $3.9 million purse will make the series the largest prize offering in pool swimming history.

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Meeeeee
3 years ago

If USA swimming is completely on the side of the swimmers they will refuse to sanction this meet. There is nothing FINA can/will do to USA swimming in retribution because they cannot survive without the USA.

SUM Ting Wong
3 years ago

They need to wear yellow swimsuits . Les Jeunes Maillots .

Coach Mike 1952
3 years ago

FINA continues to run scared. Anyone think for even a nano-second that they would have done this without ISL in their faces, threatening their hegemony? I for one am quite keen to see the outcome of the antitrust suit just started. Enough of FINA getting fat off the swimmers efforts & paying them a pittance. It NEEDS A kick in its (their? the “leaders”?) gigantic, long-running complacency.

50free
3 years ago

If they are only doing final heats, maybe they are looking for only 8 swimmers per race

Taa
3 years ago

It’s just the World Cups with better prize money. The same athletes that participated before will dominate again. They need to do something fresh or exciting not the same old thing.

Wannabe Thorpe
Reply to  Taa
3 years ago

At least it’s LCM

Superfan
Reply to  Taa
3 years ago

I think it is more money for the elite of the elite swimmers. World Cup spreads out the monies more (mainly because many elite swimmers don’t support WC).

Superfan
Reply to  Superfan
3 years ago

And I don’t think the super elite like individual gold medalists “need” the money!

Guywhoswims
3 years ago

What is their definition of “highly ranked international swimmers”

Superfan
Reply to  Braden Keith
3 years ago

Hopefully!

Coach Mike 1952
Reply to  Braden Keith
3 years ago

FINA is grasping at straws right now.

coacherik
3 years ago

There is already 1 pro series event in each of those months in the Us. I guess since they’re only including the best swimmers, but that does detract some of the draw/fanfare if there is a drop off of US stars.

Will the best US swimmers collectively drop the pro series event that is in that same month for this FINA event or will they stay away to ensure it doesn’t succeed as FINA hopes?

Swimming4silver
Reply to  coacherik
3 years ago

considering the pro series this year, is going to be in small to medium sized towns without major airports close by, i dont think it would be much of a problem…

Brian M
Reply to  Swimming4silver
3 years ago

You make it sound like it is being held in Siberia. With the exception of Knoxville, all of the sites for this year are much easier to get to than Omaha. It has nothing to do with access, it’s all about whether or not the meet is attractive to top flight swimmers.

Superfan
3 years ago

So they haven’t picked these exact hosts? I don’t think they have thought through the whole process! Let’s say Peaty doesn’t go, so no one will be in the 100 breast?!?

About Braden Keith

Braden Keith

Braden Keith is the Editor-in-Chief and a co-founder/co-owner of SwimSwam.com. 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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