South Africa’s 200 fly Olympic Champion Chad le Clos departs today for a month-long training and competition tour in Europe, he reported via his Twitter account today.
From early June until early July is a huge month of racing in Europe; the majority of the World Championship Trials meets (save Great Britain this year) have completed, but there are plenty of meets, and plenty of money, floating around for swimmers to get in an extra couple of races before the World Championships.
That includes the Mare Nostrum series, with stops in Monaco (June 8th-9th), Barcelona (June 11th-12th), and Canet en Roussillon, France (June 15th-16th). He is confirmed and on the start lists for this series for all three meets in the series, including the second stop in Barcelona: the host city for this summer’s World Championships.
At the Mare Nostrum, he’ll be a part of a field that is almost a very high level of competition. That includes:
- his teammate Roland Schoeman;
- a large German contingency including Dorothea Brandt, Britta Steffen, Steffen Deibler, Hendrik Feldwehr, Marco Koch, and Christian vom Lehn;
- Melanie Henique, Charlotte Bonnet, Camille Muffat, Eric Ress, Benjamin Stasulius and Jeremy Stravius from France;
- Evelyn Verraszto and Katinka Hosszu from Hungary (Hosszu is entered in 10 races over two days in Monaco);
- American Nic Fink from the University of Georgia, an SEC Champion in the breaststrokes, and his teammate Will Freeman;
- Sophie Allen, Lizzie Simmonds, Michael Jamieson, Joe Roebuck, and Andrew Willis from the Bath ITC in Britain;
- A large Chinese youth contingent;
- Jeanette Ottesen and Lotte Friis from Denmark;
- ri Liukkonen;
- Alex di Giorgio, Luca Dotto, Luca Leonardi, Marco Orsi, and Michelle Santucci from Italy;
- Aya Terakawa, Kanako Watanabe, Daiya Seto, Kenta Ito, and Shinri Shioura from Japan;
- Olympic 100 breaststroke champion Ruta Meilutyte from Lithuania
- Lauren Carnol from Luxembourg;
- A whole bunch of Russians;
- Slovenia’s Damir Dugonjic;
- Sweden’s Sarah Sjostrom; and
- Jazz Carlin, Georgia Davies, and Jemma Lowe from the Swansea ITC in Great Britain;
Overlapping with the end of that meet is Italy’s Sette Colli Trophy (Seven Hills Trophy) from June 13th to 15th in the Rome Swimming Stadium that hosted the 2009 World Championships. Official start lists for that meet are not yet available, but those athletes confirmed include Daniel Gyurta, Laszlo Cseh, Gergo Kiss, Zsu Jakabos, Peter Bernek, Thiago Pereira, Nicholas Santos, Joao Gomez Jr., Henrique Rodrigues, Marcelo Chierighini, Leonardo de Deus, Evgeny Korotyshkin, Sergey Fesikov, Andrey Govorov from the Ukraine, Camille Muffat, Yannick Agnel, Florent Manaudou, Camille Lacourt, and Ranomi Kromowidjojo.
Looking through that list, there’s at least 5 gold medalists from the 2012 Olympics on the list, and many other minor medals as well.
Later on, in early July, the 2013 edition of the Paris Open will take place; this is a meet that was often frequented by American Michael Phelps when he was in his prime. This year, we know that Brazilian Cesar Cielo will be using the meet as a final tuneup for Barcelona.
There’s not much else available about this meet yet, but in the least it typically attracts all of France’s best swimmers, and at its best brings in fields similar to those listed above.