MADRID, Spain, December 3.THE 3rd FINA Synchronized Swimming World Trophy, which will be held from December 5-7, 2008 in Madrid (ESP) at the facility "Centro de Natacion M-86 C" welcomes the best synchronized swimmers in the world, who will compete with superb presentations in duet (December 5), team (December 6) and free combination (December 7) for the enjoyment of all those watching the event.
Following a decision of the Technical Synchronized Swimming Committee, a new competition session truly unique to this year's Trophy has been added to the Program on Day 1 following the Duet Free event. A Thematic Duet, which will be performed to music reflecting the culture of the Host Country with a duration of 2 minutes plus/minus 15 seconds, will be presented. Exceptionally, the use of accessories in costuming will be allowed for this duet, as it has been specifically included to increase the beauty and creative appeal of the event for the benefit of the audience.
Teams from Canada, China, Egypt, Spain, Great Britain, Italy, Japan and Russia will take part in the 2008 World Trophy. In this group, we find all the medalists of the 2008 Olympic Games in Beijing (CHN). Russia, winner of the World Trophy in the first two editions (2006 in Moscow and 2007 in Rio de Janeiro) and Olympic champion in duet and team, is naturally the team ‘to beat' in the Spanish capital, but taking into account that the competition does not reward for technical merit (in which the Russians are clearly above the rest of the field), this circumstance renders the final outcome more difficult to predict. Furthermore, and according to the latest entry list received from Russia, the stars Anastasia Ermakova/Anastasia Davydova (Olympic, World and European champions) will not swim in Madrid.
In Rio, in 2007, Spain was very close to securing the final victory (in fact, the overall ranking of the Trophy is done by adding the notes in each of the events), having won the team event. In the end, Russia triumphed with 296.333 against Spain's 295.000. At home, Gemma Mengual and her teammates will certainly look for first place on the podium, after a quite successful Olympic Games, where they took the first medals ever for their country in this discipline – two silver.
Besides this European duel, the other two medaled teams in Beijing – Japan and China – will also try to display their best performances in Madrid. At the Olympics, Japan took the bronze in the duet, while China was third in the team.
The FINA World Trophy, streamed live on the FINA website www.fina.org, will distribute US$ 154,500 in prize money, distributed as follows: 1st place – US$ 50,000; 2nd place – US$ 30,000; 3rd place – US$ 20,000; 4th place – US$ 15,000; 5th place – US$ 12,500; 6th place – US$ 10,000; 7th place – US$ 9,000; 8th place – US$ 8,000
Special thanks to FINA for contributing this report.