In the final of the World Cup series on Thursday, Kristóf Rasovszky finished third in the 10-kilometer open water swimming race. The bronze medal gave him the overall world championship title.
Only three out of the planned eight stages of the Open Water Swimming World Cup series have been held due to the coronavirus pandemic.
According to sports daily Nemzeti Sport, with France’s Marc-Antoine Olivier winning everywhere, he was the clear favorite for the overall World Cup title in the series final in Abu Dhabi.
Kristóf Rasovszky started the race with two second places and a fourth, and the calculations showed that he would only have a chance of winning the overall World Cup if the Frenchman finished several places behind him.
But Olivier was disqualified for a punch, so it was time for a recount, which meant that if Rasovszky finished in the top five in Abu Dhabi, he would take the overall first place. He finished third behind Germany’s Florian Wellbrock and Italy’s Domenico Acerenza.
“I came here to Abu Dhabi knowing that I had very little chance of winning the overall, but I started these ten kilometers with the intention of trying to win the title. During the race, my biggest rival, Marc-Antoine Olivier, was eliminated, which opened the way for me, although I didn’t know that during the race, I thought Olivier was ahead of me. At the finish, I asked Acerenza who was third, and when he said me, I suspected something had happened… – the German and the Italian were better than me in these ten kilometers, but I am happy with the bronze medal and even happier with the overall victory. I can go on my short break with good experiences and then start my preparations in January with even more enthusiasm,” said Rasovszky.
Kristóf Rasovszky after the 10 km race of the World Open Water Swimming Cup in Abu Dhabi on December 16, 2021. Photo by Tamás Kovács/MTI
Nemzeti Sport reports that besides Rasovszky, Dávid Betlehem and Péter Gálicz have also qualified for the World Championships in Fukuoka in May. The World Cup in February will decide who will swim the Olympic 10-kilometer event in Japan, and who will compete in the five and/or 25-kilometer events.
Featured image: Kristóf Rasovszky with his medal after the 10 km race of the World Open Water Swimming Cup in Abu Dhabi on December 16, 2021. Photo by Tamás Kovács/MTI