Courtesy of FINA, Gwangju, South Korea.Sharon van Rouwendaal qualified for her third straight Olympic Games, but it was not easy.
The reigning Olympic 10 km champion wrote on her Facebook page, “I knew it was going to be a really hard race, especially after a troubled year. During the race, I had a moment where I thought I wouldn’t make it, but I kept pushing it until the end. I had a lot of emotions after the race.I’m relieved that I made top 10 and that I can still try to defend [my Olympic] title next year [in Tokyo].”
Like her Dutch teammate Ferry Weertman, the Dutch duo will try to become the first two-time Olympic 10 km marathon swimming gold medalists in history.
But winning in Tokyo, Japan is going to be like racing in Gwangju, South Korea: a gold-medal performance is going to take a tremendous amount of training, a flawless race strategy, well-timed tactics, a dash of good luck and a deep self-belief for Nothing Great Is Easy.
Women’s Olympic 10 km Qualification Race Results: