In what may have been a preview of the highly anticipated finish at the Olympics, Thomas Lurz won the FINA 10km Marathon Swimming World Cup race in Cancun, Mexico in dramatic fashion over arch-rival Spyridon Gianniotis and Italian star Nicola Bolzonello.
The finish was so close that the video-tape of the finish had to be reviewed repeatedly for 45 minutes until the judges finally came to a consensus…the German multiple-time world champion star came out on top…but only by a few hundreds of a second that was nearly indistinguishable by the naked eye in the ocean among the splashing and thrashing at the sprint finish.
Another intriguing addition to the mix is the emergence of Olympic 1500m gold medalist Ous Mellouli in the 10 km distance.
Like Grant Hackett‘s attempt at the 10 km in the previous Olympic year, world champion Mellouli certainly has the capacity to win the Olympic goal with his world-renowned aerobic conditioning, strength, size and unbelievably efficient freestyle stroke.
He also has the closing speed and endurance to best Lurz and Gianniotis, but the question is whether he can master the tactics and strategy to beat his much more experienced open water rivals.
In addition, Mellouli is under the tutelage of one of the most successful Olympic coaches in modern history, Dave Salo of the Trojan Swim Club, and Catherine Vogt, the former coach of 10 km world champion Chip Peterson. Between Coach Salo and Coach Vogt, Mellouli has a strong brain trust to give him the advice needed to augment his obvious physical skills and tough mental distance swimming mindset.
The men’s results were as follows:
1. LURZ THOMAS 1:57:16:51 GERMANY
2. GIANNIOTIS SPYRIDON 1:57:16:55 GREECE
3. BOLZONELLO NICOLA 1:57:16:56 ITALY
4. REICHERT CHRISTIAN 1:57:21:12 GERMANY
5. SAUVAGE JULIEN 1:57:21:56 FRANCE
6. RYCKEMAN BRIAN 1:57:21:76 BELGIUM
7. WASCHBURGER ANDREAS 1:57:21:82 GERMANY
8. BERAUD ROMAIN 1:57:22:01 FRANCE
9. DEMIREIEV MICAEL 1:57:25:62 ISRAEL
10. STOYCHEV PETAR 1:57:31:56 BULGARIA
11. OUSSAMA MELLOULI 1:57:32:02 TUNISIA
12. FESENKO SERGIY 1:57:37:26 AZERBAIJAN
13. MALDONADO ERWIN 1:57:37:88 VENEZUELA
14. CATTIN-VIDAL DAMIEN 1:57:54:12 FRANCE
15. SNITKO IGOR 1:57:55:05 UKRAINE
16. HEDEL JOANES 1:58:10:37 FRANCE
17. DESHARNAIS XAVIER 1:58:11:08 CANADA
18. CHERVYNSKIY IGOR 1:58:19:01 UKRAINE
19. DO CARMO ALLAN 1:58:22:14 BRAZIL
20. POSMOURNY JAN 1:58:28:98 CZECH REPUBLIC
21. LOPEZ IVÁN 1:58:45:31 MEXICO
22. SCHWEINZER MATTHIAS 1:59:01:86 AUSTRIA
23. SEGOMIA JHONDRY 1:59:14:71 VENEZUELA
24. GERCSAK CSABA 1:59:25:91 HUNGARY
25. VITEK ROSTISLAV 02:00:35:00 CZECH REPUBLIC
26. SPARKS-KING AIMESON 2:00:36:63 CANADA
27. GUERTIN PHILIPPE 2:01:16:32 CANADA
28. ESCOBAR LUIS 2:01:29:11 MEXICO
29. BRYAN CHRIS 2:01:30:87 IRELAND
30. GAD AHMED 2:02:44:77 EGYPT
31. BOLAÑOS LUIS 2:03:26:44 VENEZUELA
32. AZIZ MAZEN 2:03:51:12 EGYPT
33. SIGRIST STEFAN 2:03:53:16 SWITZERLAND
34. SMOLKA LIBOR 2:03:54:22 CZECH REPUBLIC
35. HIRAI YASUNARI 2:04:31:83 JAPAN
36. KLEINDL JOSEPH 2:05:44:78 GERMANY
37. BILLIAU DAVY 2:07:34:22 BELGIUM
38. CUIGNET CHARLIE 2:07:48:24 FRANCE
39. ELORZA RODRIGO 2:08:11:21 MEXICO
40. ROJAS ALAN 2:08:38:64 MEXICO
41. SEROUR MOHAMED 2:10:35:33 EGYPT
42. EL-BEHARY ADEL RAGA 2:10:36:12 EGYPT
43. CORREA RODRIGO 2:13:32:77 BRAZIL
44. SIMOES VICTOR 2:13:34:32 BRAZIL
45. VASQUEZ KEVIN 2:15:44:18 GUATEMALA
46. KOBAYASHI YUTO 2:17:56:92 JAPAN
47. HURST KY DNF AUSTRALIA
48. BERTOLA GUILLERMO DNF ARGENTINA
49. PETERS MITCHELL DNF CANADA
50. CHIU MANUEL DNF MEXICO
The men’s results are posted here.
Photos courtesy of the Federación Mexicana de Natación.
Copyright © 2012 by World Open Water Swimming Association