FINA Communications Department

The 2018 edition of the FINA Swimming World Cup kicks off this Friday September 7 in Kazan (RUS), with the first leg of the series taking place until Sunday September 9 in the Aquatics Palace, a superb venue used at the 2015 FINA World Championships held in the capital of Tatarstan.

Many stars will travel to Kazan for the start of this World Cup, namely the 2017 champions Chad Le Clos, from South Africa, and Sarah Sjostrom, representing Sweden. Le Clos is a four-time Olympic medallist (including an epic gold against US Michael Phelps in the 200m fly at the 2012 Games), has been five times on the podium at the World Championships and amassed 11 medals at the FINA World Swimming Championships (25m). The South African will be fighting for his fifth title in the World Cup, after winning the series in 2011, 2013, 2014 and 2017.

Sarah Sjostrom got her first triumph in 2017, but has shone at the highest level at the Olympic Games (three medals), World Championships (12 podium presences), and World Swimming Championships 25m, (three gold, one silver).

Their battle for the overall title will certainly be challenged by Katinka Hosszu (HUN), in the women’s field, and by Russian hero Vladimir Morozov among men. The Magyar great is the best ever in the history of the FINA Swimming World Cup, with five consecutive titles between 2012 and 2016. She is also multi-medallist at the Olympics (4) and World Championships (13 medals in long course and 22 in short course). Hosszu was second in the overall ranking in 2017.

Concerning Morozov, he won the series in 2016, and was second in 2013 and last year. With one relay medal from the 2012 Olympics, and four podium presences at the World Championships, the Russian star is one the best swimmers in the history of the FINA World Swimming Championships (25m), with 13 medals.

While on the Hungarian side, Hosszu will be accompanied by experienced Zsuzsanna Jakabos in the women’s field and David Verraszto among men, Morozov will be part of a local delegation comprising also confirmed assets Yulia Efimova and Anton Chupkov.

Still from Europe, Belgium will bring Kimberly Buys and Pieter Timmers, while the strong team of the Netherlands will include Jesse Puts, Femke Heemskerk and Ranomi Kromowidjojo. The latter was the third best in the 2017 edition in the women’s category.

From the US side, Michael Andrew and Tom Shields are certainly set for medals in Kazan, while Felipe Lima from Brazil will be a serious contender in the men’s breaststroke events. Mitch Larkin, the backstroke ace, is the sounding ace from Australia. From China, a strong 10-athlete delegation will also compete in Kazan.

The FINA Swimming World Cup will distribute over US$ 2.5 million in prize money to the best swimmers of competition, and is contested over three clusters. In 2018, for the first time, the series is held in both 50m and 25m-pool.

The complete calendar of the 2018 FINA Swimming World Cup is as follows:

Cluster 1 (50m-pool)
1.    Kazan (RUS) – September 7-9
2.    Doha (QAT) – September 13-15

Cluster 2 (25m-pool)
3.    Eindhoven (NED) – September 28-30
4.    Budapest (HUN) – October 4-6

Cluster 3 (25m-pool)
5.    Beijing (CHN) – November 2-4
6.    Tokyo (JPN) – November 9-11
7.    Singapore (SGP) – November 15-17