It is nearly impossible to accurately predict the medalists in the Olympic 10K Marathon Swim at the 2016 Rio Olympic Games…but some athletes are ideally prepared to swim the race of their lives and capture a medal.
One of those athletes is the senior veteran of the Greek Swimming Federation, Spyridon Gianniotis.
There are a number of reasons why Gianniotis will stand on the Olympic podium on Copacabana Beach at the end of the Olympic 10K Marathon Swim:
1. His track record of success on the international stage. Not only has he won two FINA World Championships in the 10 km marathon swim, but he has long been a contender in every international competition he has participated in.
2. His Olympic experience. Gianniotis has qualified for the 2000, 2004, 2008, 2012 and 2016 Olympic Games. He knows the pressure of the Games, he has experience with the logistics and expectations of the Olympic 10K Marathon Swim.
3. He can adapt to all racing situations. Gianniotis has won races from the front, from the middle of the lead pack, and from way back in the rear (one of his FINA World Championship victories can after he came back from 46th place).
4. He has succeeded in medaling in lakes and oceans, rowing basins and seas, and in rough and calm conditions.
5. This is realistically his last shot at a medal. The 36-year-old retains the stamina, strength and speed of men half his age and his race awareness is on the highest end of the spectrum.
5. He believes he can medal and win.
6. Greece is rooting for him.
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