Jacco Verhaeran Joins German Swimming Association To Share His Golden Sprinting Knowledge

Jacco Verhaeren
Jacco Verhaeren - Photo Courtesy: SwimmingWorld.TV

Former Australia team coach Jacco Verhaeren has joined the German national team staff where he will share his sprinting expertise, the national swimming association DSV has announced.

Verhaeren guided Pieter van den Hoogenband, Inge de Bruijn and Ranomi Kromowidjojo to a total of 10 Olympic gold medals before heading to Australia where he was head coach.

The 52-year-old left Swimming Australia in September 2020 after seven years following a tenure which saw them finish second in the medal table at Rio 2016 and the 2019 World Championships in Gwangju.


Ranomi Kromowidjojo: Photo Courtesy: Mine Kasapoglu / ISL

Verhaeren has now joined the German coaching team although his focus will be on the long-term – including work with junior swimmers – rather than on preparation for the Olympics that are scheduled to take place in July this year.

With a track record of producing freestyle swimmers who have reached the Olympic pinnacle over the shorter distances, Verhaeren will be tasked with developing sprinters from 50 to 200m in collaboration with coaches and sports scientists at the DSV’s training bases, starting with junior swimmers.

National coach Hannes Vitense said on the federation’s website:

“Jacco Verhaeren is without a doubt one of the most well-known coaches of our time, we are very happy about the possibility of a transfer of such knowledge.

“Above all, our youngsters will benefit from Jacco Verhaeren’s advice and input in the long term.”

Sports director  Thomas Kurschilgen  added:

“We have to make sensible use of internationalisation in competitive sports and systematically and sustainably integrate proven foreign coaching skills for the DSV.

“This is a win-win situation for everyone involved.”

National team coach Bernd Berkhahn welcomed Verhaeren’s appointment, saying:

“We want to be successful with the DSV over the short distances, as we were before with Britta Steffen’s two Olympic victories in 2008. That’s why I’m looking forward to exchanging ideas with a successful man like Jacco Verhaeren.”

As for Verhaeren, he said:

“As a foreigner, you are not part of history and culture, but you are also not part of possible problems. It already helped me in Australia to be able to start with a blank sheet of paper in order to then initiate sustainable development.

“I hope I can do that with the help of the current trainers and the entire DSV staff.

“In any case, I’m really looking forward to this task in a swimming nation as traditional as Germany.

“As a Dutchman, I know the demands and opportunities of the neighboring country well enough to tackle this job with maximum motivation.”

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