FINA Communication Department

With turquoise waters temperature ranging between 19-23C° and the iconic Corniche providing a stunning setting, Doha is the newest host of the FINA Marathon Swim World Series on Saturday March 18, formerly called the FINA 10km Marathon Swimming World Cup.

Qatar, a country surrounded by water on three sides and a strong passion for swimming and water-themed heritage, will stage the first races (men and women) of the 2018 circuit.

Outstanding performances and stamina are on the programme of this year's Series which includes ten meets taking place in some of the world's most scenic waterways in nine different countries: (Qatar, Spain, Seychelles, Portugal, Hungary, Canada, China, Chinese Tapei, United Arab Emirates).


A total of 72 male swimmers and 44 female swimmers (24 countries) will compete in Doha. Olympic champions and World champions such as Sharon Van Rowendaal and Ferry Weertman (NED), Marc-Antoine Olivier (FRA), without forgetting last year's overall winners Arianna Bridi, Simone Ruffini of Italy and their teammates Gregorio Paltrinieri and Rachele Bruni will swim their fasted in the vibrant Qatari capital.

Ahead of the grand première FINA spoke with Italian coach Stefano Rubaudo.

"I have noticed that over the years the organisation of the Series has grown in the right direction and it is much more professional nowadays. For example, the registration process through the FINA GMS is a huge step forward. For sure the FINA Marathon Events have grown bigger in the last 5 years."

Sensible to the environment question that goes hand in hand with Open Water, the coach said:

"We, athletes and coaches, do not have a preferred venue but in general I can say that Setubal, Balaton, Abu Dabhi are all always very well organised. We pay particular attention to the environment question. It is crucial for us to keep the water clean and avoid leaving wastes behind."

Looking at Saturday's races which will feature some World and Olympic champions, Rubaudo is confident to say that "All swimmers who usually are in the first eight places in the ranking have good chances to win to in Doha."

Asked what the Italian secret to success is, he said:

"The Italian team is constantly working and growing for the best success, benchmarking the "old and most experienced" top swimmers. I will be happy if one of them finishes among the first three places in the circuit. Our final goal is in any case the Olympics in Tokyo. The secret to success is to program and to work hard to reach the target."

The annual prize money to be awarded for both the Men's and Women's Series overall winners is as follows:

1st place

USD 38 000

2nd place

USD 26 000

3rd place

USD 18 000

4th place

USD 15 000

5th place

USD 11 000

6th place

USD 8 500

7th place

USD 5 000

8th place

USD 3 500