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Background[]

  • Open water swimming will be held in the Beijing Olympics for the first time since the 1900 Paris Olympics. The event is formally called the Olympic 10K Marathon Swim and will be held in the Shunyi Olympic Rowing-Canoeing Park. 25 of the world's best open water female swimmers will swim 4 loops or 10 kilometers (6.2 miles) around the rowing course on August 20, 2008. 25 men will compete on the following day.
  • Typically, world-class 10-kilometer open water races are swum at a very high pace for 9 kilometers where the athletes swim in large packs with much physical contact. The athletes are provided liquids by their coaches on floating pontoons during the race. During the last one kilometer, a frantic and furious sprint to the finish begins. The race for the medals comes down to an exciting sprint where medals are won or lost by tenths of a second.

Insights[]

Media in May 2008[]

Kirsten Groome, Chloe Sutton to Represent U.S. at Open Water Test Event[]

May 11, 2008

"Having a second chance at reaching my Olympic dreams is a dream come true on its own." - Chloe Sutton

USA Swimming will send Kirsten Groome and Chloe Sutton to compete for the lone 10K open water spot available for the U.S. at the Beijing Test Event.

Catherine Vogt has also been named the coach for the pair heading to Beijing on May 31, 2008.

What makes this Olympic 10K qualification race in Beijing so intriguing is the fact that each country can only qualify one athlete. As reported by 10KSwimmer, in head-to-head competitions in 2007, Chloe beat Kirsten by 4 seconds in the 10K National Championships in 2007, but Kirsten beat Chloe by 8 seconds in the 10K Grand Prix and by 4 seconds in the 10K World Championship Trials.

In 2006, Kirsten won the 5K Nationals, but in 2007, Chloe won the 5K Nationals.

Chloe won the 2007 Pan American 10K Championships and 2006 Pan Pacific 10K Championships, but Kirsten won a 2007 10K FINA World Cup in Canada and was touched out by world.