Selection for Canadian Swimmers to attend Olympic Open Water Qualifier begins this weekend at FINA World Cup in Brazil

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istock canadian flag

Martin Richard

– Victoria’s Richard Weinberger leads the pack of seven Canucks in Brazil-

SANTOS, Brazil – Seven Canadian swimmers will be taking part in the FINA 10km Marathon Swimming World Cup this Sunday in Santos, Brazil with hopes of getting closer to an Olympic birth.

Amongst these seven athletes, Victoria’s Richard Weinberger is heading into the event with high expectations and the determination to extend his winning streak.

Weinberger produced Canada’s top result in the 10k during last summers’ World Championships in Shanghai, yet a 16th place finish wasn’t enough to secure his spot for the Olympic swimming marathon in London. Only the top 10 swimmers at the Shanghai Championships earned their ticket to London, while the remaining 15 slots are yet to be filled.

“The ultimate goal for me to be a medal contender at the Olympics,” said Weinberger. “But before I achieve that, I need to focus attaining the little goals that my coach and I have established. Training hard and achieving my race plan is constantly the focus of what I want to accomplish, and wining the race will be the result of all the hard work.” In an average week, Weinberger swims 100km.

According to his coach Ron Jacks, Weinberger has been building his confidence since the Worlds and strives toward prolonging his wining streak. Weinberger won the Olympic Test event last August ahead of the World champion. Later in the season, he produced a gold medal for Canada at the Pan American Games in Mexico.

Other Canadians competing in Brazil are Zsofia Balazs of Toronto, ON, Caitlin Nolan of LaSalle, QC, Tyra Rooney of Calgary, AB, Nadine Williams of Sherwood Park, AB, Xavier Desharnais, Sherbrook, QC and Aimeson King of Victoria, BC will the hunt for a spot on Canada’s squad advancing to the 10km Marathon swimming Olympic qualifier.

Swimming Canada, the governing body for competitive swimming in Canada, will be selecting a team of 4 athletes (2 male, 2 female), to race under the maple leaf banner at the Olympic Marathon Qualifier in Sebutal, Portugal next June with hopes of grabbing the remaining spots available to compete for the first time in the 10km race at the London Olympic games since its inception at the 2008 Beijing Olympics.

The top-placing Canadian swimmer at either the FINA 10km Marathon Swimming World Cups in Brazil (January 2110th) or Argentina (February 4th) will be selected to attend the Olympic Marathon Qualifier.

The second qualifier will then be the next top-placing swimmer from either FINA 10km Marathon Swimming World Cups in Brazil, Argentina or Mexico on April 21st.

Official selection document is available on the Swimming Canada website at: www.swimming.ca/SelectionCriteria

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