Three-time Olympic Champion Ranomi Kromowidjojo Calls Time On Her Career

KROMOWIDJOJO Ranomi NED 50 Freestyle Women Final Gold Medal Swimming Budapest - Hungary 18/5/2021 Duna Arena XXXV LEN European Aquatic Championships Photo Andrea Staccioli / Deepbluemedia / Insidefoto
Ranomi Kromowidjojo: Photo Courtesy: Andrea Staccioli / Deepbluemedia / Insidefoto

Three-time Olympic champion Ranomi Kromowidjojo has announced her retirement from the pool after a career that spanned more than 15 years at the top of elite sport.

The Netherlands swimmer made her final competitive appearance at the World Short-Course Championships in Abu Dhabi last month where she won the 50 fly and 4×50 mixed medley relay among an overall haul of six medals.

Her retirement follows that of fellow Netherlands Olympic champion Femke Heemskerk who called time on her career following the ISL final in December.

ranomi-kromowidjojo-world-championships-2015 (1)

Photo Courtesy: Maria Dobysheva

Kromowidjojo first stepped on to the senior international podium at 15 when she won silver with the Dutch women’s 4×100 freestyle relay at the 2006 European Championships in Budapest, Hungary.

She went on to win three Olympic titles across Beijing 2008 and London 2012 – including the 50 and 100 free double at the latter; three world titles among 17 medals and six European golds among 14 medals.

Now aged 31, Kromowidjojo has raced her last race after winning 89 international medals in total and made the announcements through the Dutch Swimming Federation and social media, saying:

“? I’m retiring from professional swimming ?

“I fulfilled my career as a professional athlete.

“Swimming will remain my passion, but no longer on a professional level. I have always been aware that there is more to life than professional sport and that it is part of a greater whole.

“Thanks to all the years of professional sport, I know that people are capable of much more than they think they are, partly by having the right mindset.

“I am convinced that these experiences will now help me with my next challenge of inspiring

Of the future, Kromowidjojo continued:

“What that will look like exactly, I don’t know yet. But one thing I do know, this is not the end ? I can write books full of lessons, beautiful memories, valuable friendships, and everything I have experienced as a “pro” (something I did not want at all as a 12-year-old because “then you have to train so hard and no longer have fun” ?).

“I can also write a book to thank all the people who are (or have been) important to me. But I think that instead I will – finally- take time in the coming period to toast, toast or spontaneously go and have coffee ☺️ And enjoy it in a different way.

It was a real pleasure for me to do All the beautiful races and moments not only for myself. But also to take you on the journey and again, this is not the end ? “only” of my professional swimming career. ??”

She added through KZNB:

“I want to make the world a bit more beautiful, contribute to a better world. She will remain committed to Unicef, the children’s rights organisation of which she has been a dedicated ambassador for many years.

“Hopefully, we can organise another Ranomi Cup for Unicef in 2023 as well.”

As a member of the Swimmers Alliance – a swimmer-dedicated organisation charged with providing greater opportunities for the athletes – Kromowidjojo will also continue to champion the interests of top swimmers.

 “Furthermore, I also have the ambition to help people in their personal development. I think it would be great fun to coach people and teams, just not at the poolside…”

Over the years, she trained with coaches Jeanet Mulder, Jacco Verhaeren, Marcel Wouda and Patrick Pearson.

Pearson had various assistant coaching roles and was involved in coaching Kromowidjojo for more than 10 years, five of which he was ultimately responsible for her performance.

Pearson said:

“Ranomi has shown that talent can take you far, but that she has especially made a difference through wanting to do better every day than she did the day before.

“She swam every metre with dedication and focus. She used the knowledge, skill and her own experiences to reach the very top and stay there for 15 years.

“I enjoyed the pleasure she had in doing so.

“Ranomi thrilled the entire swimming and sports-minded Netherlands with her sporting achievements and optimism. It was an honour to be able to work with her.”

Kromowidjojo’s Roll Call

Olympic Games: 3 x gold, 1 x silver
World Championships: 3 x gold, 8 x silver, 6 x bronze
European Championships: 6 x gold, 6 x silver, 1 x bronze
World Championship short course: 14 x gold, 9 x silver, 5 x bronze
European Championship short course: 18 x gold, 5 x silver, 3 x bronze

Tributes Flood In

Fellow triple Olympic champion Pieter van den Hoogenband – who won the 100 and 200 free double at Sydney 2000 – said on social media:

“You have meant an incredible amount to swimming in the Netherlands all these years. Even when the going was bad, you found fun in the pool again. Thank you for inspiring new generations,

“Thank you for everything you have done for swimming in the Netherlands and beyond

Four-time Olympic medallist Sarah Sjostrom – who competed against Kromowidjojo many times in the 50 and 100 free – said: “Congrats. You are a true hero and champion.”
Federica Pellegrini – who also retired last month – Bronte Campbell, James Guy, Lia Neal, Siobhan O’Connor, Sharon van Rouwendaal and James Gibson were among hundreds who paid tribute.
Rio open water champion Ferry Weertman – who is engaged to Kromowidjojo – simply posted three heart symbols.
Five-time European medallist Kira Toussaint posted a picture to social media of herself, Kromowidjojo and Weertman.


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