On Saturday, Coach Saima and I (Milla Holmen)got the chance to spectate the Swim Open Stockholm competition, which was the third leg of the Nordic Swim Tour. The Nordic Swim Tour is a three weekend long competition featuring meets in three Nordic cities- Helsinki, Bergen, and lastly, Stockholm. These meets brought some of the world’s BEST swimmers, including Sarah Sjӧstrom, Katinka Hosszú, and other Olympic swimmers and world record holders, all to the same pool, and needless to say, was quite the event to watch.
The competition was located in the heart of Stockholm at Eriksdalsbadet. Although a large portion of the competitors were from Nordic countries (mainly Sweden and Finland), there were also competitors that came from all around the world, including countries such as Germany, Israel, U.S.A., and Hungary.
The morning started off with the prelims, which was divided into A heats (swimmers with the fastest entry times) and B/C heats (swimmers with slower entry times). During prelims, swimmers competed in a total of 105 heats with 10 swimmers swimming per heat! Here, swimmers were competing to get a spot in the finals, which would commence that afternoon. Only the fastest 24 swimmers from each event would make it to the finals, so as you could guess, the competition was fierce.
The much awaited finals began later in the afternoon, and the atmosphere was amazing- everyone on the pool deck was full of excitement and eagerness- the swimmers, spectators, coaches, and officials were all looking forward to watching the world’s most elite swimmers compete in the same pool.
As the finals progressed, we experienced some incredibly fast swims, witnessed the making of meet records and saw many award ceremonies during which swimmers were awarded their metals and prize money.
Some of the highlights from the day included seeing Sarah Sjӧstrom win the 100 butterfly, watching Katinka Hosszú win the 400 Individual Medley by 13 SECONDS, and getting a selfie with Sarah Sjӧstrom at the end of the day!!! It was also really awesome to see a lot of swimmers from my home country, Finland, swim really well- one of them even qualified for the 2020 Olympics at this meet! All in all, my first time at this competition was very enjoyable, and I am really looking forward to attending this meet again next year!
Written by our coach Milla.