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Prizemoney confirmed for Melbourne 2007

8 October 2006

In a world first, athletes will be competing for cash at the 12th FINA World Championships in Melbourne next March.

A Prizemoney pool of two million dollars (US) will be distributed across the five aquatic disciplines of Swimming, Open Water Swimming, Diving, Water Polo and Synchronised Swimming.

Alicia McCormack, Australia’s World Champion water polo goalkeeper was delighted when informed of the prize money. “It’s definitely an extra incentive” she said.

“Winning is even better, but when the hard work has paid off and there is also some cash, it helps a great deal. Knowing that you don’t have to work full time and can still afford petrol, food and physio is great. One hundred dollars makes us [water polo players] excited.”

Olympic Gold Medallist and current world record holder in the 200m butterfly, Jessicah Schipper, was also excited “I’m happy that there is a cash prize for swimming. It probably puts everyone under a little bit more pressure to perform and will make the competition even more fierce.

“It also helps athletes financially. It is hard to juggle a career/studies, training and outside/sponsorship commitments and so every little bit helps.”

The International Federation of the Championships, FINA, met in Madrid in September and decided that all the medallists in the FINA World Championships will receive prizemoney for their performances. World Record’s will also be rewarded with US$25,000.

The distribution of the Prize Money will be as follows:

SWIMMING: 1st place US$ 12,000; 2nd place US$ 7,000; 3rd place US$ 5,000

DIVING (individual and synchro): 1st place US$ 12,000; 2nd place US$ 7,000; 3rd place US$ 5,000

WATER POLO: 1st place US$ 60,000; 2nd place US$ 40,000; 3rd place US$ 30,000

SYNCHRONISED SWIMMING (solo and duet): 1st place US$ 12,000; 2nd place US$ 7,000; 3rd place US$ 5,000

SYNCHRONISED SWIMMING (Teams & Free Combination events): 1st place US$ 30,000; 2nd place US$ 25,000; 3rd place US$ 20,000

Five-time Olympic gold medallist Ian Thorpe will return to Australia, from his Los Angeles training base, over the coming weeks. National Coach Alan Thompson told AAP that the 23-year-old may return to competition in a lead-up meet at the Australian Institute of Sport on the 3rd and 4th of November.

Thorpe like the rest of Australia’s swimmers are focused on the Nationals in Brisbane from December 3 - 10 as they will double as the selection for the 2007 World Championships in Melbourne in March. Thorpe has not swum internationally since he won two gold, one silver and a bronze at the Athens Olympics in August 2004.

Return to Beijing Bound

For more information visit Swimming Australia

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