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.