Day two of the second leg of the FINA Artistic Swimming World Series in Paris, France brought an exciting contrast of experienced versus young and debuting athletes as six sets of medals were contested in the Female and Male Solo events, Mixed and Female Team events.
Female Solo Free
Spain’s Iris Tio Casas drew what could be considered the most undesirable starting position, kicking off the competition day first. Unphased, Casas put in a solid performance of her new routine to score 86.7333 points.
A field of twenty-one soloists representing eighteen nations followed, but Casas’s score remained at the top of the leaderboard to earn her the gold medal.
Frederica Sala, who has been representing Italy on the World Stage for more than ten years in Team events, made a smashing debut as a soloist in Paris. Sala’s performance of the technically difficult routine showcased her experience and ability in the heights and beautiful leg lines while emphasizing subtle details with hand, feet, and facial expressions. The jury awarded Sala 85.8000 points for the silver medal.
Highlighting the presence of youth and the future of Artistic Swimming was France’s Laelys Alavez. At just fifteen years old, this Alavez’s first-ever World Series participation. The playful routine Alavez performed earned 83.9000 points from the judges to place her third in the World Series and demonstrated confidence and promise for her future in artistic swimming.
Male Solo Free
The Male Solo events are still very new on the FINA Artistic Swimming World Series programme, but the technical level of the male athletes is quickly improving and providing the audience with a different type of routine than the Female Solo events.
Colombia’s Gustavo Sanchez demonstrated the power of the male athletes during his performance of his routine “The Joker”. With very dynamic and impressive leg thrusts and arm movements, Sanchez scored 80.8667 to claim the gold medal.
Italy’s Nicolo’ Ogliari made an impressive debut in the Solo event on the World Series stage by scoring 79.0667 points for the silver medal.
Tributing the LGBTQ community with the recognizable rainbow on his suit and swimming to Sam Smith’s Fire on Fire, Puerto Rican Javier Ruisanchez was awarded the bronze medal as he improved his score with more than five points from the first leg of the World Series to score 65.6333.
Female Technical Solo
The two youngest athletes entered in the Female Technical Solo event, France’s Oriane Jaillardon and Canada’s Audrey Lamothe, battled it out for the top honours.
With 83.5476, the youngest of the two, Jaillardon edged out Lamothe, who received 83.3653 points. Both Jaillardon’s and Lamothe’s performances are impressive considering their age and the fact that they are first-timers in the FINA Artistic Swimming World Series.
Determined not to be left out again after finishing just off the podium earlier today in the Solo Free event, Israel’s Polina Prikazchikova, impressed the judges with 80.4161 points to win the bronze medal.
Male Technical Solo
After having won several bronze medals in previous editions of the World Series, Spain’s Fernando Diaz del Rio claimed his first gold medal with 76.2795 points swimming to the iconic song Dream on by Aerosmith.
Newcomer Javier Ruisanchez continued to show great improvements, this time more than 7 points to score 60.8774 and take the silver medal home to Puerto Rico.
Mixed Team Highlight
In a repeat from the first leg of the World Series, the gold medal and silver medals for the Mixed Team Highlight event were awarded to the teams from the USA and Canada, respectively.
The Mixed Team from the USA performed their routine Cave People to the music by Chinese composer Tan Dun. Their interpretation of the movie “Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon” earned them 87.8333.
The Mixed Team from Canada received 85.5333 points for the routine themed Galaxy as they competed to a musical compilation by Stan Erbrink.
Speed was the theme of the Mixed Team representing Chile. Appropriately, the routine performed to the official title track for Formula 1 racing composed by Brian Tyler and scored the Chilean team 81.4333 points to win the bronze medal.
Team Free Combo
The final event on Day two in Paris featured only the Team from Israel. In a wonderful Combo choreography, the Israelian athletes scored 84.0667 to top the podium for the gold medal.
After two sessions of this leg of the World Series, the medal table features ten countries winning medals, a positive indication of the development of Artistic Swimming across the world and especially the increase in participation of the countries in the FINA Artistic Swimming World Series.