Huegill and co fly out to Stockholm

Federations News

Dual Olympian and Commonwealth Games gold medallist Geoff Huegill will spearhead an eight-strong Australian team for the European legs of the lucrative FINA/ARENA World Cups this month with more than US$300,000 prize money on offer.

The 32-year-old Huegill and world championship 100m freestyle relay gold medallists Eamon Sullivan and Matthew Abood will contest all three European legs of the FINA World Cup in Stockholm (15-16 October), Moscow (18-19 October) and Berlin (22-23 October) and left Sydney today bound for Sweden. In addition to the prize money, if Huegill can replicate the form that saw him break the 50m butterfly world record at the 2001-02 World Cup series, he is set to cash in on an additional US$10,000 world record bonus.  For Huegill however, who will compete in the 50m and 100m butterfly, the opportunity to travel overseas and race in foreign waters far outweighs the financial carrot on offer in Europe.

“For me it’s all about the racing, I love the style of the back-to-back world cup meets, as it allows me to travel hard and race hard,” said Huegill.

“Ultimately though, it’s all about focusing on swimming well and next year’s Australian Swimming Championships and Olympic Trials. I have cleared the decks completely and am primed to give 100% in the build up to next year.”

The Grant Stoelwinder coached swimmers were joined on today’s flight by fellow NSWIS swimmer Kenneth To from Trinity Grammar in Sydney, while Melbourne Vicentre swimmer Rachel Goh and the AIS trio of Belinda Hocking, Angie Bainbridge and Sally Foster will all depart Australia next Monday 10 October.

The Wangaratta-born Hocking, who had a breakthrough FINA World Swimming Championships in July scoring silver in the 200m backstroke and 4x100m medley relay, is excited at the opportunity to fine tune her skills against some of the world’s best when she competes in the 50, 100 and 200m backstroke.

“I really enjoy the short course racing at World Cups as it allows me to tune up my technique and work on my dives, underwater, turns and finishes against some of the best in the business,” said Hocking.

“It’s also a great opportunity to ensure I get my race plan down pat ahead of next year’s Olympic Trials in Adelaide.”

The three European legs will also be the precursor to the comeback of Olympic gold medallists Ian Thorpe and Libby Trickett, who will compete at the Asian legs of the FINA/Arena World Cup  in  Singapore (Nov 4-5), Beijing (Nov 8-9) and Tokyo (Nov 12-13).

2011 - FINA/ARENA Swimming World Cups – European Meets
15-16 October – Stockholm - Matthew Abood, Geoff Huegill, Eamon Sullivan, Kenneth To, Angie Bainbridge, Belinda Hocking, Sally Foster, Rachel Goh
18-19 October – Moscow - Matthew Abood, Geoff Huegill, Eamon Sullivan, Kenneth To, Rachel Goh
22-23 October – Berlin - Matthew Abood, Geoff Huegill, Eamon Sullivan, Kenneth To, Angie Bainbridge, Belinda Hocking, Sally Foster, Rachel Goh

FINA Newsletter