In the most stunningly gorgeous stop on the professional marathon swimming circuit, dozens of the fastest open water swimmers in the world are heading their way to Cozumel, Mexico next week.

Cozumel is a stunningly gorgeous island in the Caribbean Sea off the eastern coast of Mexico’s Yucatán Peninsula. The pro swimmers are treated like kings and queens of the sea by the Mexican Swimming Federation in the resort town of Cancun. The swimmers relax on white sand beaches, eating massive buffet spreads, and enjoying each other’s company before the race.

But once the race starts, it is an all-out dog fight. The pace is fast and the physical contact is rough. And the winners are well-prepared to continue on the rest of the 2016 Rio Olympic quadrennial. What is probably even more interesting from a competitive standpoint is the race between swimmers from each country. Not only is there a race for a victory on the World Cup, but there are also intriguing individual races like: Ana Marcela Cunha vs. Poliana Okimoto, both of Brazil

Martina Grimaldi vs. Rachele Bruni vs. Giorgia Consiglio vs. Alice Franco, all of Italy

Eva Risztov vs. Anna Olasz of Hungary

Nadine Reichert vs. Isabelle Franziska Harle vs. Angela Maurer vs. Svenja Zihsler, all of Germany

Emily Brunemann vs. Christine Jennings vs. Eva Fabian vs. Ashley Twichell vs. Heidi George vs. Haley Anderson, all of the USA

These are important races because only 2 representatives from each country can qualify for the upcoming World Swimming Championships in Barcelona and all of them want to represent their countries at the 2016 Rio Olympics where the 10 km marathon swim will be held on Copacabana Beach.

Most certainly, the race in Cozumel will be a great precursor to what we can expect in Barcelona this coming July and on Copacabana Beach in 2016.

The top women on the FINA 10K Marathon Swimming World Cup professional circuit are as follows:

1. Ana Marcela Cunha (BRA) 42
2. Emily Brunemann (USA) 40
3. Christine Jennings (USA) 27
4. Martina Grimaldi (ITA) 26
5. Nadine Reichert (GER) 20
6. Isabelle Franziska Harle (GER) 18
6. Olga Beresnyeva (UKR) 18
6. Eva Fabian (USA) 18
9. Rachele Bruni (ITA) 16
10. Poliana Okimoto (BRA) 14
10. Giorgia Consiglio (ITA) 14
12. Angela Maurer (GER) 12
12. Svenja Zihsler (GER) 12
12. Eva Risztov (HUN) 12
12. Alice Franco(ITA) 12
16. Celia Barrot (FRA) 10
16. Yumi Kida (JPN) 10
18. Ashley Twichell (USA) 8
19. Heidi George (USA) 7
20. Anna Olasz (HUN) 6
20. Nicole Cirillo (ITA) 6
22. Rachael Williamson (GBR) 4
22. Aurora Ponsele (ITA) 4
22. Fabiana Lamberti (ITA) 4
22. Angelica Andre (POR) 4
22. Liliana Hernandez (VEN) 4
27. Finnia Wunram (GER) 3
28. Betina Lorscheitter (BRA) 2
28. Gabriela Ferreira (BRA) 2
28. Mariana Souza (BRA) 2
28. Gabriela Cordeiro (BRA) 2
28. Nadine Williams (CAN) 2
28. Lena-Sophie Bermel (GER) 2
28. Antonia Leonie Beck (GER) 2
28. Ines Hahn (GER) 2
28. Evdokia Ktitikou (GRE) 2
28. Nikolett Szilagyi (HUN) 2
28. Tali Lemcoff (ISR) 2
28. Rotem Amit (ISR) 2
28. Rotem Shimron (ISR) 2
28. Chen Pinsli (ISR) 2
28. Chen Yehudit Eini (ISR) 2
28. Elmira Aigaliyeva (KAZ) 2
28. Lizeth Rueda (MEX) 2
28. Zaira Cardenas (MEX) 2
28. Elizaveta Gorshkova (RUS) 2
28. Alexandra Sokolova (RUS) 2
28. Anast Asia Krapivina (RUS) 2
28. Angelina Kargal Tseva (RUS) 2
28. Anast Asia Azarova (RUS) 2
28. Carla Diaz (VEN) 2
28. Elzen Florencia Melo (VEN) 2
28. Paola Perez (VEN) 2

Copyright © 2013 by World Open Water Swimming Association