Ona Carbonell, 23-Time World Champion Medalist Artistic Swimmer, Retires

Photo Courtesy: Joao Marc Bosch

Ona Carbonell, 23-Time World Champion Medalist Artistic Swimmer, Retires

Ona Carbonell, a two-time Olympic medalist and 23-time World Championships medalist, announced her retirement from artistic swimming last week.

The Spanish international qualified for three Olympics and returned with medals twice, winning bronze in the team competition and silver in the duet (with Andrea Fuentes) at the 2012 Olympics in London. Carbonell competed in her last Olympics in Tokyo less than a year after giving birth to her first child. Spain finished seventh in the team event.

Carbonell made the announcement last week via a video on social media.


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A post shared by Ona Carbonell (@ona_carbonell)

She said, in part, in a video narration:

I’m happy and calm to have taken this decision, but above all, grateful. Sport and artistic swimming have given me everything. They’ve given me values. Humility in defeat and in victory, effort and companionship, creativity and beauty. The importance of respect and mutual support, knowing my physical and mental limits and getting up after losing.

The 32-year-old native of Barcelona has the most artistic swimming medals in World Championship history. She won the free combination event at the 2009 World Championships in Rome to go with 11 silver medals at Worlds and 11 bronze medals.

Carbonell is a three-time European champion. Her European crowns include team titles in 2008 and 2012 and the 2012 combination title. She won European medals as recently as the 2021 event in Budapest.

Carbonell just missed a third Olympic medal at the 2016 Olympics in Rio, she and Gemma Mengual finishing fourth in the duet.

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