FINA Plans to Combine World Championship, Masters World Championships in 2015

In one of the more notable announcements of the FINA World Aquatics Convention going on this week in Moscow, FINA President Cornel Marcelescu revealed on Tuesday that the governing body for all things aquatically competitive intended to combine the 2015 World Championships in Kazan, Russia with the 2015 World Masters Championships: creating one of the largest sporting events in the world with over 15,000 participants.

Source.

That year will be the first when FINA shifts the World Masters schedule to odd-numbered years alongside the standard World Championships. The event is scheduled to begin in the same facilities immediately after the completion of the elite event, but will be billed as a “single meet”.

Initial indications implied that FINA might somehow try to schedule the meets concurrently, but now that we know that they will just be back-to-back (similarly to what USA Swimming does with Masters Nationals after Olympic Trials), it seems to be a brilliant one financially. World Championships, while always exciting, are expensive, and don’t always provide a lasting economic benefit to the host city.

Masters World Championships, however, have the potential to pump in a whole lot more money. The event attracted nearly 15,000 participants to Riccione, Italy this summer, and is expected to do the same to Montreal in 2014.

As compared to elite competitors, Masters competitors are relatively valuable. They spend money, and don’t expect a whole lot in return – a quality competition venue, a well-organized meet, good competition, and international comraderie. The translation for that for the meet hosts is low costs, and high economic benefits. Perhaps this could attract an American city to put greater effort into a hosting bid, if it could provide a better return on their investment.

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NHGuy
8 years ago

Perfect, I always wanted to spend time in the Gulag…..

Jg
Reply to  NHGuy
8 years ago

Take a trip to NJ or parts of NY. But don’t forge to take your own potty & 32 oz soda drinks.

8 years ago

“they spend money, and don’t expect a whole lot in return – a quality competition venue, a well-organized meet, good competition, and international comraderie.” I agree that that is what we expect … but would say that our expectations are actually quite high. Based upon the bad stories I heard from people who shelled out big $$ to swim in ultra-crowded, ultra-long sessions in Riccione, I’d caution future Masters World Championships hosts to expect a very picky customer. If they continue to go for raw numbers and don’t create a good environment for racing, I suspect attendance would drop.

What Omaha & USMS did this summer was fabulous. Riccione & FINA? Based upon what I heard, not-so-fabulous.

7 years ago

I found the Riccione meet to be the best masters meet I’ve ever attended. Yes, it was crowded, but you could always find a place to sit or lie down. Yes, warmups were crowded, but only in the 4 lane, 20 meter (?) indoor warmup pool (not the 10 lane, 25 meter outdoor warmup pool). Yes, the sessions were long, but that could be managed by only swimming one event per day and following the meet progress by internet each day so you knew when to show up.

Crowds and long sessions were inevitable with nearly 10,000 swimmers in attendance. The solution may be stricter enforcement of entry standards, as there were MANY, MANY swimmers in each event who… Read more »

About Braden Keith

Braden Keith

Braden Keith is the Editor-in-Chief and a co-founder 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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