Courtesy of FINA.

FINA announced its new Champions Swim Series for the world’s fastest pool swimmers. 45 men from 15 nations and 37 women from 17 countries were formally invited to take part in the three-stop 50m pool circuit (Guangzhou, China in April; Budapest, Hungary in May; and Indianapolis, USA in June).

The invited athletes include 2016 Rio Olympic medalists, 2017 FINA World Championships medalists, world record holders, and leaders of the 2018 FINA World Swimming rankings with four athletes per final.

Races include the 50m, 100m and 200m freestyle, backstrokes, breaststrokes and butterfly, and the 400m free and 200m IM.

In addition to the travel and accommodation expenses, as well as appearance fees, prize money will be significant:

1st place: US$10,000
2nd place: US$8,000
3rd place: US$6,000
4th place: US$5,000

Relays will also be conducted with the following prize money: 1st – US$16,000 for 1st; 2nd – US$12,000 for 2nd; 3rd – US$8,000 for 3rd; US$2,000 for 4th. Bonuses of US$20,000 are paid for each new world record set.

Compare this generous cash + expense + appearance fee package for pool swimmers to the current prize money offerings on the FINA Marathon Swim World Series (where races are 10 km in distance) and the FINA UltraMarathon Swim Series (where races range from 25 km to 57 km in distance):

1st place: US$3,500
2nd place: US$3,000
3rd place: US$2,500
4th place: US$1,700
5th place: US$1,500
6th place: US$1,200
7th place: US$950
8th place: US$650

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