PR50 - Ten Olympians will race the Setubal Bay International World Cup on Saturday
The second race of the FINA 10km Marathon Swimming World Cup 2009 will take place on Saturday, June 27, 2009 at Setubal Bay (POR). Ten of the Olympic open water swimmers who competed in the inaugural 10km marathon swim at the 2008 Beijing Olympics have entered the race, which indicates a high level of competition can be expected.
Among men the roster includes Thomas Lurz (GER), who won the 5km gold and 10km silver at the 2007 FINA World Championships in Melbourne (AUS), the 5km gold and the 10km bronze at the FINA World Open Water Swimming Championships 2008 in Seville (ESP), and the 2008 Olympic bronze medal. But Lurz will face Spyridon Gianniotis (GRE), the 5km bronze medallist from Melbourne, as well as Allan Carmo (BRA), Luis Escobar (MEX), Arseniy Lavrentyev (POR) and the great Petar Stoychev (BUL), all of whom competed in Beijing.
Further pressure will come from Jakub Fichtl (CZE) and Luiz Lima (BRA), who have continued to improve on the world stage since their appearance in Melbourne two years ago, as well as Mazen Aziz (EGY), who placed a respectable 7th in the 25km race in Seville last year and finished 3rd overall in the 2008 10km Marathon Swimming World Cup.
The women’s entries also suggest a tough race will unfold. The Olympians on hand will include Ana Marcela Cunha (BRA), who placed 3rd overall in the 2008 World Cup series and already won the opening 2009 World Cup race in Santos on January 24. Poliana Okimoto (BRA) - the silver medallist from Santos - will also race, as will the experienced Daniela Inacio (POR). The presence of Angela Maurer (GER), the overall 2008 World Cup winner who has already attained legendary status in the discipline, will certainly elevate the level of competition. Not to be underestimated is Stefanie Biller (GER), who finished 2nd overall in the 2008 FINA Open Water Swimming Grand Prix, and Alejandra Gonzalez (MEX), who performed well throughout last year’s series and will be looking for a place on the podium.
The Setubal Bay International Swim Marathon will be held off the Atlantic coast of Portugal, approximately 40km south of Lisbon. The race course consists of five 2km rectangular laps in waters with a temperature between 18-19°C. The men’s race will commence at 17:30 and the women will start at 17:45. A total of US$20,000 in prize money will be awarded.
There are thirteen stops on the FINA 10km World Cup circuit this year, which will continue until the final leg in Sharjah (UAE) on October 21. After Setubal, the World Cup races being held this summer are as follows: July 23, 2009 at Lac St. Jean (CAN); August 8, 2009 in Varna (BUL); August 12, 2009 at Lake Annecy (FRA); and August 29, 2009 in Copenhagen (DEN).