FINA Removes 25K Open Water Event from 2023 World Championships

Photo Courtesy: Andrea Masini / Deepbluemedia / Insidefoto

FINA has removed the 25K open water race from the lineup to the upcoming 2023 World Championships.

The world governing body of swimming released a letter to member federations detailing the decision on Thursday.

According to the letter, the FINA Bureau, following consultation with various stakeholders, has decided to remove the 25Km event from the Open Water Swimming program at the FINA World Championships in Fukoaka 2023.

“This decision has not been easy. The FINA Bureau could not discount the low number of participation in this event during the last two FINA World Championships and the operating costs that this event represents to the Local Organizing Committees. For these reasons, the event has been removed from the program,” the letter signed by Executive Director Brent J. Nowicki reads.

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The event is removed for 2023 but no decision has been made on any future events past that at this time.

“Open Water Swimming in general continues to thrives and FINA will continue exploring new opportunities for the 25km Open Water event. Indeed, FINA is currently working on a new concept for long distance, Open Water events. New and exciting information for FINA’s Open Water events will be announced in the near future,” the letter reads.

Brazil’s Ana Maria Cunha has won the women’s 25K five times, the first open water swimmer to ever claim world championships in the same event five times. She will not be able to defend an event that doesn’t take place, though she still might have a chance should the 25K remain.