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Tuesday, June 5, 2012

First Beijing, Then London, Next Rio, Then...?

After holding its first few Olympiad swimming competitions in the open water (Aegean Sea at the 1896 Athens Olympics, Seine River in the 1900 Paris Olympics and a man-made lake in the 1904 St. Louis Olympics), the first marathon swim in Olympic history was held in 2008.

The historic event took place in a 2+ km man-made rowing basin at the 2008 Beijing Olympics.

This August 9th (women) and 10th (men) marathon swimming will be showcased to a global audience in the Serpentine in Hyde Park at the 2012 London Olympics. This spectacle in the center of London will be followed up by potentially an even larger audience when the marathon swimmers compete in Copacabana Beach for the 2016 Rio Olympics in Brazil.

But what comes after Beijing, London and Rio de Janeiro?

The International Olympic Committee has narrowed down its choices for the 2020 Summer Olympics to Tokyo, Istanbul and Madrid.

Tokyo Bay will be the marathon swimming venue of choice if the capital city of Japan is selected on the IOC’s final vote on September 7th 2013. The Sea of Marmara bordering Istanbul will showcase the marathon swimmer if the Turkish city is chosen to host the 2020 Summer Olympics. And the rowing basin seating 16,500 outside Madrid, lying in the heart of Spain, will be where the fastest marathon swimmers will gather in 2020.

A bay in the Pacific Ocean. A legendary water boundary between Asia and Europe. Or a rowing basin in the heart of Spain will be the venues that take marathon swimming up another notch in 2020.

Copyright © 2012 by Open Water Source

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