Sunday, June 26, 2011

Pilar Geijo dominates FINA Grand Prix in Italy

Pilar is no stranger to coming first, finishing the No 1 ranked woman in last years FINA Grand Prix series, but her latest win in the 2011 series has put an even bigger smile on her constantly happy face.

The 36km race held in Italy from Capri to Napoli is set against a beautiful backdrop and offers sometime challenging conditions to the swimmers. It has a long history, with the event starting in the 1950’s, more as a festival of the sea called “La Settimana Motonautica” which included a variety of different water sports. Because of its long history, Pilar has always wanted to win the race that is a favorite for open water swimmers.

But it wasn’t going to be an easy day for the swimmers. Rough sea conditions meant swimmers had to deal with waves and chop throughout the crossing. Pilar decided to swim with the men for the first three hours in order to give herself as big an advantage over her female competitors as possible.

The tactic worked, and Pilar finished in 7 hours 34 minutes - a solid 37 minutes in front of Esther Nuñez from Spain (8 hours 11 minutes), with Alessandra Romitti from Italy (8 hours 21 minutes) in third place.

“This is my first time that I win this race in Italy and it really is a dream come true.
I am the second Argentina woman to get the victory in the history of this race, the first was Angela Marchetti in 1973, and 38 years later an Argentina women won this race again! I’m very proud to get this title for Argentina and for blueseventy team!”

“I really enjoyed the race, and I really enjoyed being able to share the result with my family. This time my father came with me in the boat, because my coach couldn’t travel to Italy, so it was my father who guided me during the race.
This day (19 June) was Fathers Day in Argentina, so I was really pleased that I could dedicated this victory to him on his day!

Pilar is currently ranked No. 1 in the nine-race series with 4 races remaining, 9 points ahead of 2nd ranked Swimmer Esther Nunez Of Spain. You can check out more about FINA Open Water racing here.

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