Blake Pieroni “Highly Recommends” Other Swimmers to Participate in the FINA World Cup Circuit

Photo Courtesy: Peter H. Bick

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American freestyler Blake Pieroni is in his first year as a professional swimmer and has already taken advantage of the opportunity to win money by participating in the FINA World Cup this fall.

Pieroni has competed at every stop, collecting wins and breaking a few meet records along the way. Pieroni is having a lot of fun competing at the FINA World Cup meets, which are generally raced in short course meters. In an interview with FINA, Pieroni said he is having “more fun at this event than any other Series.”

The FINA World Cup does not attract a lot of the world’s best swimmers since it is not long course, most notably Adam Peaty. But Pieroni said that swimming short course meters doesn’t bother him because he has trained it before.

“I’ve trained short course for most of my early swimming career, when I was in middle school and high school, we didn’t have a 50m pool so we trained in 25m all summer and I think it prepared me for meets such as the World Cup and the World Swimming Championships (25m)”

Blake Pieroni has competed in the first four World Cup meets and said why he thinks the circuit is important.

“This is a more opinionated answer but for me, only racing 50m-pool gets a bit arduous and I get tired of it. I think racing short-course keeps things fresh and it’s just fun. What makes it fun and attractive is partially the use of underwater dolphin kicks.”

“Since the Olympics are long-course, people have always thought of the 25m event as not being as important, but for me I like them just as much, maybe even more!”

“I think that short-course prize money should be closed to the World Championships (50m) prize-money. It would help develop the popularity of these events and I would highly recommend other swimmers participate in the FINA Swimming World Cup meets!”, adds Pieroni.

Pieroni also mentioned how much he has enjoyed meeting all the swimmers and being able to see “some pretty cool” places.

“This being the first time I have competed in a World Cup circuit, there were many swimmers that I did not know, but it was great to meet them and make friends with them. Now going to each meet is fun to catch up and see how they are doing.”

Pieroni also said he plans on swimming at the FINA World Swimming Championships (25m) in Hangzhou, China from December 11-16, and that the World Cup meets have been the “majority of his preparation for the meet.”

“In my opinion, doing the race is the best practice a person can get, it’s the most specific and I feel that you learn the most.”

The next World Cup stop will be November 2-4 in Beijing, China. Michael Andrew and Pieroni are the only Americans set to attend the meet. Superstars Sarah Sjostrom and Ranomi Kromowidjojo are set to attend as well as world record holders Nicholas Santos and Wang Jianjiahe.

Sjostrom and Vladimir Morozov are currently on top of the money list after the first two clusters.

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FINA has contributed to this report.