FINA Presents the Medals; Prize Money for the 2013 World Championships

Last week, FINA presented the medals for the 2013 World Championships in Barcelona. At a meeting in Barcelona at the historic swim club CN Natacio-Barceloneta, three of Spain’s most famous athletes presented the Gold, Silver, and Bronze medals to the members of the crowd. Xavier Trias, the mayer of Barcelona, was at the presentation and expressed how excited he was that his city is hosting the championships.

“Everything we have seen today forms part of the image of Barcelona. The Championships will be in the limelight and we have to make the most of it. Hosting the major sporting event is important for the city and its citizens.”


The medals were designed by a company called lagranja. Ona Carbonell, Jennifer Pareja and Marc Minguell, three of Spains top athletes, jumped out of the water wearing the medals.

Medals aren’t all that’s at stake, however. There is a prize pool of over $3.1 million to top finishers in all of the FINA disciplines.

FINA will give out $3,100,500 dollars across 6 disciplines, including a whopping $1.56 million in pool swimming alone.

Prize money for the whole meet will be broken down as follows:

 Overall Prize Money        
 Discipline    No. of events    Prize Money per event    Total Prize Money  
 Swimming    40    $39’000    $1’560’000 
 Water Polo    2    $165’000    $330’000  
 Diving    10    $39’000    $390’000  
 Synchronised Swimming    4    $39’000    $156’000  
   3    $105’000    $315’000  
 Open Water    6    $39’000    $234’000  
 High Diving    1    $63’000    $63’000  
   1    $52’500    $52’500  
 Total    $3’100’500     
 + World Record (for each – Swimming only)    $25’000      

With money per placing going out:

   Swimming    OW Swimming    Diving    High Diving (Women)   High Diving (Men)  Synchronised Swimming (Solo and Duet)    Synchronised Swimming (Team and Free Combination)    Water Polo  
 1st Place    $15’000    $15’000    $15’000    $10’000    $10’000    $15’000    $30’000    $60’000  
 2nd Place    $10’000    $10’000    $10’000    $9’000    $9’000    $10’000    $25’000    $40’000  
 3rd Place    $5’000    $5’000    $5’000    $8’000    $8’000    $5’000    $20’000    $30’000  
 4th Place    $4’000    $4’000    $4’000    $7’000    $7’000    $4’000    $15’000    $20’000  
 5th Place    $3’000    $3’000    $3’000    $6’000    $6’000    $3’000    $10’000    $10’000  
 6th Place    $2’000    $2’000    $2’000    $5’000    $5’000    $2’000    $5’000    $5’000  
 7th Place              $4’000  $4’000            
 8th Place              $3’500  $3’500            
 9th Place                  $3’000              
 10th Place                $2’500              
 11th Place                $2’000              
 12th Place                $1’500              
 13th Place                $1’000              
 14th Place                $500              
 Total    $39’000 (Per Event)  $39’000    $39’000    $52’500    $63’000  $39’000    $105’000    $165’000 

The 15th FINA World Championships begin in 14 days.

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9 years ago

I’d say tennis is the most extreme. At Wimbledon the prize money totalled £22.6m this year (approximately $33 million). Moreover, there is four major tournaments in tennis every year plus dozens of well paid secondary tournaments. But there is no serious world championships! How can it be so?

I’m not proposing getting rid of the Worlds, which are the inherent part of swimming, but we must find ways to keep audience involved in swimming more regularly and constantly in order to improve rewards (to attract sponsors), just like in tennis and golf. First, World Cup must be strengthened and stretched. Second, it’s absolutely impossible if best swimmers don’t attend. The new cluster system makes this possible. Ultimately, there could be… Read more »

9 years ago

I think they deserve more, look at the money list for the Masters (golf)


As in 50th gets more then the world champion. And golfers have 4 majors a year with similar prize money and lesser tournaments which still give out a lot. I’m just using golf as an example but its true in many other individual sports.

Reply to  Klorn8d
9 years ago

It would be nice but remember something like Golf is a higher rollers world on the corporate sponsorship level that gets involved and why. The tickets at US open were $250 per day and the people spend higher in the area. Progress is being made and I believe the swimmers of the elite level have many things taken care because of their recognition and don’t have it has hard as it is made out to be. I am not sure it coasts a mudh as some think.
Being able to take money has helped and the world class monthly support is decent for what it costs to live in their training situations. I am sure they have many things… Read more »

Reply to  CoachGB
9 years ago

Yeah the stars are fine but what about someone who’s really good bit not quite a star. Someone like Ricky Berens or Chloe Sutton who te incredible and consistent national trampers but aren’t gettin the marketing and sponsorships of a Franklin (in a few years) or Lochte would very much appreciate a sizeable check for a finals or semi-finals swim to reward there training.

Steve Nolan
Reply to  Klorn8d
9 years ago

That total amount of money is more than twice as much as is being given away across all sports at these WCs. (Like, $7.7 million for the golfs and $3.1 here.) In terms of total money it’s actually a lot closer than I’d expected, but it is spread out across probably, I dunno, a thousand or so athletes? here instead of just 50 at the golfs.

But yeah, they won’t ever be comparable. There’s a KAJILLION dollars in golf, not so much in swimming. Even tennis dwarfs swimming, I bleev. Track’s the better comparison.

Reply to  Klorn8d
9 years ago

Okay I was just using golf because its an extreme example but its true in many sports. A sport like marathon running which I would guess has less money then swimming still has much larger rewards. Here is the Boston marathon, not a world championships or the only worldwide competition in the marathon running calendar.
Place Men Women
1 $150,000 $150,000
2 $75,000 $75,000
3 $40,000 $40,000
4 $25,000 $25,000
5 $15,000 $15,000
6 $12,000 $12,000
7 $9,000 $9,000
8 $7,400 $7,400
9 $5,700 $5,700
10 $4,200 $4,200
11 $2,600 $2,600
12 $2,100 $2,100
13 $1,800 $1,800
14 $1,700 $1,700
15 $1,500 $1,500

Reply to  Klorn8d
9 years ago

Klorn8d – I think the conversation that needs to be had isn’t about what swimmers ‘deserve,’ rather about what swimming as a sport is doing wrong that’s keeping that from happening.

All of the sports you’re mentioning market themselves predominantly to an adult audience. Swimming, in the US especially, markets itself predominantly to an audience of children (mostly because the federations have more to make by getting kids to sign up for the sport).

As soon as swimming starts caring about fans over the age of 18, then prize monies will tick upward.

Steve Nolan
Reply to  Klorn8d
9 years ago

That’s only $700,000. At minimum, the marathon makes around $3 million from entry fees alone.

9 years ago

hs or college swimmers can’t keep the prize money but they can keep the USOC Operation Gold money. so swimmers like Missy, Ryan, Michael that swim a lot of events can make a lot of money. also, their coaches make the same amount from Operation Gold so having a Missy Franklin is big money for the coach! Over the years, Bowman must have made a fortune with his money from Michael’s medals and Operation Gold.
This prize money wasn’t in existence say 5 years ago so this is great for the athletes!!

Steve Nolan
Reply to  weirdo
9 years ago

Which is just ridiculous, if you spend literally any time thinking about it. (It feels like, super communist or something, right? “No prize money for ‘regular’ meets, but for the glorification of our great and strong nation, you may share in some of the rewards. But you’re still an ‘amateur,’ OK, so you don’t really get to own your likeness or anything. Back in the pool, please.”)

How the NCAA is still a thing baffles me.

Reply to  weirdo
9 years ago

I have always wondered, how much money does a swimmer like Phelps or Lochte pay their coaches?

Amd how about Todd Schmidt? I can imagine he does not get much from Missy, being an amateur and all.

And when Missy goes pro, will Todd get any share?

9 years ago

$15000 is too cheap for a gold medal at a World Championship. All this training for not much glory and wealth. A pity.

Reply to  ACHILLES
9 years ago

$15,000 to win an event is better then most meets.. Assuming they do not get covered by a NGB, that pays for the trip and then some. Could be the weight given for a post Olympic year? I don’t know, but if I’m training to be a World Champion, I am definitely interested in the medal and title with the added bonus of the 15K.

Could be more if we didn’t have as many events. Get rid of those pesky 50s and that gets spread out amongst the rest. 😉

9 years ago

Does anyone have information about how the prize money was distributed at the 2011 Shanghai or 2009 Rome? I’d like to perceive the direction to which money rewards are heading, up or down.

I’m happy with the fact that rewards are seemingly better than they were at short course World Championships. Even more I’m happy that also swimmers becoming 6th are rewarded. Being in a championship final is good performance and this gives some recognition for the hard work that is needed to become 4-6th.

9 years ago

So Missy will be able to keep the tens of thousands of dollars that she will win?
And she was allowed also to keep those prize money from the olympics?
But she’s not allowed to keep grand prix prize money?
And she’s allowed to receive free perks of attending parties, ceremonies, events for which I presume they paid for her transports, accommodation, etc.

NCAA really have strange rules.

Reply to  aswimfan
9 years ago

aswimfan – with regard to grand prix money, it’s sort of a balancing act. It’s very complex (and I’ve been told that her prize money can’t go toward paying for an accountant to keep track of it all). Even the amateurs get a small stipend from USA Swimming, which is allowed to cover training costs, travel costs to GP, equipment, meet entries, etc etc etc. Then they can keep GP prize money to cover those same costs if the small USA Swimming stipend ($1750 a month) doesn’t cover them, but they can’t double dip.

Worlds is the “operation gold” meet this year.

Cal Fan
9 years ago

This might explain why Hoszou is entered in so many events. She only needs to make the final to have a shot at at least $2,000. Not bad for a multi-talented pro athlete.

Reply to  Cal Fan
9 years ago

As to Hosszu’s multiple events, I don’t believe it’s about money. She has chances to get reasonably rewarded at World Cup Series which has some additional prize money in this year. Even if it were about money, why risking significantly better rewarded positions by pursuing cheap spots.

But as you said it: “might explain”. I cannot rule out that possibility even though I don’t believe in it.

9 years ago

why do prizes for womens diving go down to 14th place? this seems odd

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 …

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