Former Aussie Head Coach Verhaeren To Take Over French Squads Post-Tokyo

Former Australian national team head coach Jacco Verhaeren may have left his post down under as of late last year, but the man is wasting no time finding new professional opportunities.

Verhaeren left Swimming Australia as of September of 2020, seeking not to extend his contract with the organization. Rohan Taylor took over the Dutchman’s position, with Verhaeren intending to return home to Europe.

In January the German Swimming Association (DSV) revealed that 52-year-old Verhaeren would serve a role on the national coaching team’s staff, aiming to beef up the sprinting component.

Flash forward to today and the French Swimming Federation (FFN) announced Verhaeren would be taking over as head coach of the French national swimming team, including open water, after the Tokyo Olympic Games this July.

Verhaeren said of his appointment, “First off, I wish to say it is an honor being called upon to take on this position. I am very grateful for the opportunity I have been offered. I already had exchanges with Julien (Issoulié, DTN) on past occasions as I was still working in Australia. When the Olympic Games in Tokyo were postponed because of the worldwide pandemic, I decided to move back to the Netherlands. Quite naturally, Julien and I resumed our discussion. I have always been impressed by French swimmers and trainers and I particularly enjoyed the various competitions I could share with them as well as the training camps where we interacted.

The FFN said, “The arrival of a seasoned, high-quality technician is excellent news for French swimming. Jacco will be able to rely on the expertise of French trainers in order to generate a powerful dynamic and bear the ambition of French teams in the prospect of the Paris 2024 Olympic Games.

Verhaeren is aiming to immerse himself in the ‘Ambition Bleue’ project, which is the result of a thorough analysis of France’s high level in swimming and open water. This study is based on a full-scope evaluation of all the measures that contribute together to performance leverage both on a daily basis and at international events.

Per FFN”s announcement, the organization says it is investing €200,000 (~$244,000 USD) toward Verhaeren’s salary, the operating expenditure and the promotion of trainers in organizations of excellence.

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1 year ago

In theory, this is excellent news.
But, as a french fan, I don’t hide my perplexity.
If it is to carry out in depth-work, as Claude Fauquet did in a similar role from 1994 onwards, that is fine. We will have to be patient because that would mean that the objective is 2028 or even 2032.
If it’s to be successful in Paris in three years, why now ? What a waste of time since 2017 when it’s been almost 5 years since French swimming(in the pool) has fallen into line ! We are starting from a long way back, I just hope that Tokyo this summer does not look like Atlanta 96 and we’ll see about… Read more »

1 year ago

Big deal for French swimming

Reply to  Ghost
1 year ago

Disagree this guy is nothing special Australia actually went backwards under his watch .

Joris Bohnson
Reply to  kevin
1 year ago

Australia jumped from 7th in London to 2nd nation in Rio on the medal table

Reply to  Joris Bohnson
1 year ago

Good point. Some commentators on this forum, think Australia completely failed in Rio. As you correctly pointed out, that is not true.

Ol' Longhorn
Reply to  Joris Bohnson
1 year ago

What are you talking about? They were 10th with 29 medals at Rio. They completely sucked.

Reply to  Ol' Longhorn
1 year ago

You can’t be that obtuse mate. We are talking about the swimming medal table in Rio.

Reply to  Joel
1 year ago

You’ve been around here long enough to know that they are that obtuse.

Reply to  Troyy
1 year ago

Aaah sorry. I forgot for a moment.

Joris Bohnson
Reply to  Joris Bohnson
1 year ago

*in competitive swimming

About Retta Race

Retta Race

Former Masters swimmer and coach Loretta (Retta) thrives on a non-stop but productive schedule. Nowadays, that includes having just earned her MBA while working full-time in IT while owning French 75 Boutique while also providing swimming insight for BBC.

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