Less than five days after swimming stars Katinka Hosszu, Michael Andrew, and Tom Shields filed a proposed class action lawsuit against FINA for violating U.S. antitrust laws, the International Swimming League (ISL) announces a two-day summit in London December 18-19. Thirty current and former swimming champions will attend, boasting 15 Olympic titles between them. They are assembling to discuss many topics concerning the current professional swimming environment, starting with the creation of a global Swimmers’ Association.
Friction between FINA, the international governing body, and global elite swimmers has been heating up, most recently when FINA blocked ISL’s event, Energy for Swim 2018, which was supposed to be hosted in Italy later this month.
- FINA rule interpretation could outlaw Energy for Swim meet
- Athletes could face 1-to-2-year bans if Energy for Swim isn’t approved
- Law expert’s paper suggests FINA bans won’t hold up legally
- 2018 Energy for Swim meet cancelled after negotiations break down
- ISL Head: We will use all legal means available after Energy for Swim postponement
- FINA Memo: Discussions Ongoing with Energy Standard & ISL
Press and media representatives are invited to attend one of ISL meetings in London on December 19th at 10:00am. To attend, press and media should contact [email protected] to request accreditation.
SEE THE ISL PRESS INVITATION AND ANNOUNCEMENT BELOW:
“I really believe in the International Swimming League concept. It’s exactly what the sport needs. I really believe we need to make a stand for the future of swimming. The whole sport needs to change and that’s something I’m very passionate about.” – Adam Peaty (Sunday Times, Nov 2018)
A galaxy of stars, including 11 Olympic and 18 World champions from 10 of the world’s leading swimming nations, will gather at a brain-storming summit in London next week to help launch a new era for their sport.
The International Swimming League will host a two-day educational and brain-storming event at Stamford Bridge, home of Chelsea Football Club, in Fulham, London, from December 18-19. The aim is to provide athletes with “the tools to build a brighter future for their sport in a professional environment”, starting with the creation of a global Swimmers’ Association.
Having a collective voice will help the swimmers create the foundation for a better future, both during and after their sports career. This is the moment when athletes can make history as the pioneers who changed their sport for the better.
Athletes attending the event boast between them 15 Olympic titles, more than double that number of World titles and hundreds of international podium honours. They include 30 current stars and retired former champions Lenny Krayzelburg (4-times Olympic gold medalist and former world record holder), Jason Lezak (8-times Olympic medalist, with 4 Olympic gold medals), Mark Foster and Peter Mankoc, two of the biggest names in the history of short-course swimming.
Press and media representatives are invited to attend one of our meetings on December 19th at 10:00 AM. MP Tracey Crouch will be among those there to witness what athletes have to say about the future of their sport.
To attend, please contact [email protected] and request accreditation.
The League, led by financier Konstantin Grigorishin, intends to launch a swimming series of professional team matches starting from next year. Efforts to establish the League have so far been blocked by FINA, the international federation threatening suspensions, but waves of world-class swimmers, led by reigning Olympic champions Adam Peaty, Katinka Hosszu, Sarah Sjostrom, Ryan Murphy, and Cameron van der Burgh alongside with Michael Andrew, and Thomas Shields, have urged the global body that insists on monopoly rule to think again.
While global sport is a lucrative business worth billions and swimming and swimmers generates hundreds of millions in revenue for FINA, swimmers work and compete as professionals but have, as Grigorishin puts it, “no salary, social guarantees, no welfare, no medical and life insurance, no pension rights”.
The League has pledged to change all that, starting with the creation of a Professional Swimmers Association that will represent athletes to build a fair partnership with regulators and event organizers, the welfare of swimmers and their rights to earn a living from their work paramount.
The ISL believes that the swimmer should have a priority say in all decisions that affect them and the development of their sport.
Beyond the world-class swimmers listed with this release, we are also extending an invitation to any elite swimmers who wish to attend the event at Stamford Bridge: your support will show your peers in the pool, swim fans, the media, the sponsors, and the swimming governing bodies, national and international, that you have an opinion and you are ready to voice it for yourself, your future teammates and the values of your sport.
RSVP as soon as possible:
LOCATION Millennium & Copthorne Hotels at Chelsea Football Club
Stamford Bridge, Fulham Rd, Fulham, London SW6 1HS, UK
DATE AND TIME
19 December, 10:00 – 12:00