FINA Triples Prize Money For Abu Dhabi 10k World Cup Stop To $60,000; All Ten Other Stops Remain At $20,000

The addition of Abu Dhabi to FINA’s 2015 10K Open Water World Cup schedule has drawn a lot of attention in the past few months. Five years ago in 2010, Fran Crippen tragically died during an open water race in Abu Dahbi. There has a been a lot of criticism surrounding the selection of Abu Dhabi for a world cup stop this year.

Until recently, there was a “tbc” next to the March 13th Abu Dhabi World Cup stop on FINA’s official website. This morning we discovered that the “tbc” is no longer there, and the prize money for the event has been tripled from $20,000 to $60,000.

When it was originally announced that Abu Dhabi could be hosting an open water 10k world cup event, many US Open water athletes had serious objections to the decision. In response to FINA’s decision, organizers of the 2nd Annual Fran Crippen 10k International Cup Race rescheduled their event in Miromar Lakes, FL for the same date.

Don Henshaw of the Gulf Coast Swim Team, the meet’s host, says that this year’s race is “trying to go head to head with the UAE and support the USA Swimming boycott of the event and location where Fran Crippen tragically died.”

Henshaw is referring to a wide-spread American athletes’ intent to boycott this year’s race in the UAE, and USA Swimming saying publicly that while it won’t prevent its athletes from attending the race, that it won’t provide the support for them to go either. USA Swimming is avoiding the term “boycott” on an organization-level, saying that they have no planned effort to block American athletes from going, but that they are just not providing funding or support services for the event.

As of February 6th, meet organizers of the 2nd Annual Fran Crippen 10k International Cup Race had raised $22,000 in prize money, which was $2,000 more than they were awarding at the Abu Dhabi World Cup event.

Now that FINA has tripled the prize money, the Fran Cippen 10K Race no longer has financial leverage over FINA’s World Cup event. This prize money increase is very controversial, however, as the Abu Dhabi World Cup stop is the only event with increased prize money. All ten of the other World Cup stops are still awarding $20,000 in prize money.

We reached out to FINA to ask if the increase in prize money for the Abu Dhabi World Cup race is in any way a direct response to organizers in the US of the Fran Crippen Cup, who said that their goal was to raise more prize money than the UAE Open Water Cup. We have not received a response from FINA.

The Abu Dhabi World Cup prize money is equal for both the men and the women, and in US dollars. Swimmers that finish 1st through 16th will all be awarded cash prizes.

  1. $7,000
  2. $4,500
  3. $3,750
  4. $3,000
  5. $2,500
  6. $2,000
  7. $1,500
  8. $1,250
  9. $1000
  10. $800
  11. $700
  12. $600
  13. $500
  14. $400
  15. $300
  16. $200

For every other World Cup stop, prize money is only awarded to the top 8 finishers.

  1. $2,500
  2. $2,000
  3. $1,500
  4. $1,200
  5. $1,000
  6. $800
  7. $600
  8. $400

Leave a Reply

Notify of
newest most voted
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
5 years ago

It is all about the benjamins.

5 years ago

This is suspicious if not infuriating (yet, pending confirmation that this is indeed a blatant f-you to those that expressed concern about the venue, conditions, and race management–or how Fran’s death was handled).

Can someone please post the link to donate to the Crippen 10K prize money?

Reply to  Daaaave
5 years ago

Totally agree how infuriating this is, how can an organization get away with this?! So blatant and utterly disrespectful to one of the pioneers in OW swimming.

How cool would it be if the top 3 at the Olympics in Rio wore shirts from the 2nd annual Fran Crippen Cup

Reply to  swammer
5 years ago

swammer – it wouldn’t be that cool, given that they’d be at the least suspended, and at worst, there’s a precedent for taking their medals away.

Reply to  Braden Keith
5 years ago

Braden, can you please elaborate?–only because I’m curious and ignorant of the rules.

Reply to  Chooch
5 years ago

Chooch – there are lots of IOC rules about what athletes can or cannot wear on podiums. Among the rules are ones against political statements, and rules against guerilla advertising. Wearing shirts promoting an open water race would at the very least be a violation of the latter of those rules.

Reply to  Chooch
5 years ago

A bit of a different situation, but refer to track athletes Tommie Smith and John Carlos protesting racial inequality at 1968 Olympic Games on the podium… IOC was NOT happy and threatened to kick out the entire US delegation, the USOC capitulated and booted Smith and Carlos, but it left an indelible impression relevant even today…

Reply to  Chooch
5 years ago

Thanks for the clarification.

Reply to  Daaaave
5 years ago

You can contact Gulf Coast Swim Team through their website and ask for Don Henshaw or Greg Cross

5 years ago

here is the link to donate for the Fran Crippen Race.

Reply to  60kforFran
5 years ago

Why on God’s green earth (or blue ocean) would anyone vote thumbs down for this?! Really?!

Reply to  MindoMom
5 years ago

Probably work for FINA.

Reply to  60kforFran
5 years ago

I just donated.

About Tony Carroll

Tony Carroll

The writer formerly known as "Troy Gennaro", better known as Tony Carroll, has been working with SwimSwam since April of 2013. Tony grew up in northern Indiana and started swimming in 2003 when his dad forced him to join the local swim team. Reluctantly, he joined on the condition that …

Read More »