Rocky Start To FINA World Cup Rules Changes In Moscow


Although we won’t truly know the impact of FINA’s new World Cup rules until this season is done and dusted, we are already seeing the impact of their implementation through just the first day of the first stop. Fast swimming may have taken place in the JSC Olympisky Sports Complex pool, but through on-site accounts, we know that chaos reigned on-deck.

Consider the men’s 200m freestyle final tonight in Moscow as an example. We know from the FINA ‘innovations’ that World and Olympic medalists receive automatic entrance into that specific events final. As such, the Olympic silver medalist from Rio, Chad Le Clos of South Africa, should have been granted an automatic spot in the final even though he was a ‘DNS’ in prelims.

However, when the initial start list for tonight’s final was produced, Le Clos’ name was left out of the top 8, even though another medalist, Russian World Championships medalist Aleksandr Krasnykh, was included. Meet organizers hastily corrected with adding Le Clos, which now means that the men’s 200m freestyle final has nine participants when it typically only should only have 8. This appears to be the only final to fall into this scenario, but it does shine the spotlight onto the administrative challenges of the automatic finals slotting.

FINA confirmed that any medalist still has the option to compete in prelims, with their finals bid guaranteed no matter the outcome. This includes if the swimmer was a ‘DNS’, if he/she was disqualified, or if he/she rendered a time that wouldn’t have otherwise qualified in the top 8.

Additional issues regarding the new FINA World Cup rules will be reported as the meet continues.

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A non-e mouse
3 years ago

This is a stupid rule. And this is a stupid situation. FINA is stupid.

Reply to  A non-e mouse
3 years ago

Stupid stupid stupid am I right

3 years ago


3 years ago

No one should get a free shot at the finals without having to swim the heats first. Those swims take a toll and that’s giving the medalists an advantage. The circle seeded heats already give them an advantage – they know how fast to swim to qualify. What was FINA thinking?

Reply to  AvidSwimFan
3 years ago

totally agree .

Reply to  AvidSwimFan
3 years ago

“What was FINA thinking”?
They weren’t

Reply to  AvidSwimFan
3 years ago

They have never been in a pool.

About Retta Race

Retta Race

After 16 years at a Fortune 1000 financial company, long-time swimmer Retta Race decided to change lanes and pursue her sporting passion. She currently is Coach for the Northern KY Swordfish Masters, a team she started up in December 2013, while also offering private coaching. Retta is also an MBA …

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