Exciting Start to the 2023 LEN Open Water Cup - Taddeucci and Olivier Claim Wins in Leg 1 in Israel

Exciting Start to the 2023 LEN Open Water Cup – Taddeucci and Olivier Claim Wins in Leg 1 in Israel

Ginevra Taddeucci from Italy and Marc-Antoine Olivier from France were the winners in the first leg of the LEN Open Water Cup championship held in Eilat, Israel.

The race officials decided to start the competition earlier because of the predicted high winds and the decision proved to be a good one as the conditions were perfect for swimming in the Red Sea.

In addition to the LEN Open Water Cup competition, the race also doubled up as the Israeli Swimming Championships, which was an open event so athletes from outside of Europe could compete.

The women’s race had six Australian swimmers who were using the competition as a selection event for the World Aquatics Championships. Taddeucci chose to swim with three of the Australian swimmers – Chelsea Gubecka, Madeline Gough, and Moesha Johnson – when they broke from the pack.

Taddeucci finished the race in one hour, 54 minutes, and 04.4 seconds, just behind Gubecka and Gough, but still won the LEN Open Water Cup title.

Angelica André from Portugal won the silver medal, and Bettina Fabian from Hungary won the bronze medal against experienced Aurelie Muller and Leonie Beck.

Left to right – Domenico Acerenza, Marc-Antoine Olivier, Marcello Guidi. Simone Castrovillari / LEN

The men’s race was impacted by selection-chasing Australian swimmers. After the first two laps, Hungary’s David Betlehem led the race. Olympic silver medallist Kristof Rasovszky had to withdraw after taking an elbow to the nose. Italian world champion Gregorio Paltrinieri led the race at the halfway stage, but it was the Olivier who finished in 1 hour, 47 minutes, and 56.2 seconds and won the race. Domenico Acerenza and Marcello Guidi from Italy finished in second and third place, respectively.

The next leg of the LEN Open Water Cup 2023 will take place in Piombino, Italy, on 13 May.

Photo: Left to right – Angelica André, Ginevra Taddeucci, Bettina Fabian. Simone Castrovillari / LEN