FINA World Championships, Open Water: Valerio Cleri Earns 25K Title Under Rough Conditions

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By Steven Munatones, Swimming World Open Water correspondent

ROME, Italy, July 25. ROUGH seas call for hardy souls. The world's best marathon swimmers ventured out at Ostia Beach this Saturday morning in Rome and battled amongst themselves and the windy, wavy elements in the men's 25K competition at the FINA World Championships.

"The conditions were very rough," United States head coach Catherine Vogt said immediately after the race. "Our kids did awesome. We are so proud of them. They were in the [lead] pack the whole time until the very end."

Valerio Cleri, who placed a close fourth in Wednesday's 10K, came back to capture the first swimming gold for Italy with a strong closing sprint over Trent Grimsey of Australia. Grimsey nearly gutted a victory despite having competed in all three events in these championships (the 5K on Tuesday, the 10K on Wednesday and the 25K today). Vladimir Dyatchin of Russia, a former 5K and 10K world champion, broadened his reportoire to include the 25K, took third.

The final results are as follows:
GOLD: Valerio Cleri (ITA), 5:26:31.6
SILVER: Trent Grimsey (AUS), 5:26:50.7
BRONZE: Vladimir Dyatchin (RUS), 5:29:29.3
4. Brian Ryckeman (BEL), 5:30:18.4
5. Loic Branda (FRA), 5:30:20.9
6. Bertrand Venturi (FRA), 5:30:22.9
7. Brendan Capell (AUS), 5:30:27.5
8. Rostislav Vitek (CZE), 5:32:38.8
9. Simon Tobin Daignault (CAN), 5:34:48.2
10. Libor Smolka (CZE), 5:35:06.4
11. Sean Ryan (USA), 5:36:22.2 – shown above
12. Andrea Volpini (ITA), 5:36:37.9
13. Manual Chiu (MEX), 5:39:12.1
14. Rodrigo Elorza (MEX), 5:43:26.4
15. Danill Serebrennikov (RUS), 5:46:21.7
16. Arseniy Lavrentyev (POR), 5:48:43.0
17. Saleh Mohammad (SYR), 5:49:30.6
18 Adel El-Beharya (EGY), 5:54:00.3
Evgenji Popacev (MKD), OTL
Mohammed Jassim Alghareeb (KSA), DNF
Alex Meyer (USA), DSQ – shown above
Mazen Metwaly (EGY), DNS
Diego Nogueira Montero (ESP), DNS

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