UPDATE: Sjostrom & Dressel To Win FINA Swimmer of the Year Awards

An update to the scoring format suggests that Sarah Sjostrom and Caeleb Dressel will win FINA’s Swimmer of the Year awards, not Sjostrom and Adam Peaty as previously reported.

We took an early look at the presumptive winners this week, running through FINA’s stated points system with results from the past year. We noted at the time, however, that there were several areas of the scoring format that were unclear: most notably, the start and end dates for accruing points, but also the specifics of points given for World Championships finish.

The full FINA criteria are here, with very little supporting information given outside of point values. We asked FINA for clarification on several key pieces of the formula the week before posting our first look at frontrunners, but still have not received a response from the swimming federation. However, we have learned from a source with knowledge of the award system that the World Championship points will be counted differently than we anticipated and that Dressel will be earning the award over Peaty.

The main difference is that World Championship points will be doled out for every individual event, our source tells us. Our original read on the formula used FINA’s Swimmer of the Meet points system to rank out the top 12 swimmers of the meet, assigning each of them a points bonus toward Swimmer of the Year. But now we’re informed that those bonuses will actually go to the top 12 finishers in each individual event, making World Championships finish far and away the most impactful factor in the Swimmer of the Meet award.

For example, we had Dressel accruing 180 World Champs points for his Swimmer of the Meet honor, while Peaty (second in the Swimmer of the Meet tally) earned 140. But based on our new understanding of the system, Dressel will actually earn 180 points for every event win, plus points for any other event where he’s inside the top 12. That ultimately earns him 640 points instead of the 180 we had originally calculated. In contrast, Peaty goes from 140 points to 360.

Here’s the full points system. Note that the World Cup standings are still ongoing through mid-November and that it’s still unclear when the World Rankings points are assigned. The award will officially be announced on December 2, 2017.

SWIMMING Olympic Games & FINA World Championships (50m & 25m) (1) FINA Swimming World Cup (2) WR bonus
World Rankings (4)
1 180 120 75 25
2 140 90 20
3 130 80 15
4 100 60 10
5 90 50 5
6 80 40
7 70 35
8 60 30
9 40 25
10 35 20
11 30 15
12 25 10

Dressel should win the men’s award with an estimated 725 points, while Peaty should finish with 535, unless world rankings change drastically. Sun Yang will earn 450 plus world ranking points while Chase Kalisz rolls up 360 plus world ranking points.

On the women’s side, Sjostrom should earn more than 1300 – 680 from Worlds, 120 for the World Cup, 450 from world records and at least another 100 from world rankings in the 50 fly and 100 fly in both short and long course. The next-closest challengers are likely Katinka Hosszu (at least 865, plus a fair amount of world ranking points), Katie Ledecky (680 for Worlds, plus some world rankings points), Mireia Belmonte (675 plus world ranking points), Lilly King (610 plus world ranking points) and Ranomi Kromowidjojo (525 plus world ranking points).

In This Story

Leave a Reply

8 Comment threads
19 Thread replies
Most reacted comment
Hottest comment thread
18 Comment authors
newest oldest most voted

Fully deserved to the 2 most incredible swimmers this year .


Sjostrom had an awesome year. She set records in multiple meets. She broke the 52-second barrier in the 100 free with her WR.

Dressel is the Sprint King now on the men’s side. Interesting in that Dressel and Sjostrom swim similar events.


Not just the Sprint King anymore. He’s THE King. ?

Sir Swimsalot

Eh…I won’t be too sure about that yet. Phenomenal, yes.


As it should be

About Jared Anderson

Jared Anderson

Jared Anderson swam for nearly twenty years. Then, Jared Anderson stopped swimming and started writing about swimming. He's not sick of swimming yet. Swimming might be sick of him, though. Jared was a YMCA and high school swimmer in northern Minnesota, and spent his college years swimming breaststroke and occasionally pretending …

Read More »

Want to take your swimfandom to the next level?

Subscribe to SwimSwam Magazine!