By Sharon Robb
November 1, 2015—Marta Ciesla of Pine Crest Swimming will make her international debut on Monday when the FINA/Airweave World Cup Series resumes at the Hamad Aquatic Center in Doha, Qatar.
The high school All-American swimmer will represent the U.S. in the series’ final two meets as a member of USA Swimming’s 14-member 18-and-under squad that also includes Florida-bound Maxime Rooney, Sean Grieshop and Courtney Harnish.
Ciesla, a junior at Pine Crest, competed in her last high school meet this season at the district meet two weeks ago. She gave up competing in the region and state meets to represent her country.
Ciesla, a member of the USA Swimming Junior National Team in the 50 freestyle, will compete Monday in the 50-meter freestyle in the third heat seeded in 25.07. The heats and final are both Monday. Prelims are 3 a.m. EST and finals 11 a.m. EST.
This is the third and final cluster that finishes in Doha and Dubai this week. The Doha event is Monday and Tuesday and Dubai event is Friday and Saturday.
The only other Florida swimmer competing is three-time Jamaican Olympian Alia Atkinson of South Florida Aquatic Club. Atkinson, 26, looks to rebound after a disappointing cluster start in Tokyo last week where she managed to take only one silver medal and missed making the final in the 100-meter breaststroke, her signature event.
Hungarian Katinka Hosszu and South African Cameron Van der Burgh, the current World Cup points leaders, head an impressive international field that also features Yannick Agnel of France, James Guy and Robbie Renwick of Great Britain, Emily Seebohm of Australia and American Natalie Coughlin.
The full eight-leg World Cup is being held in long course leading up to the 2016 Rio Olympics.
The top three finishers in each event earn $1,500, $1,000 and $500. There is also a $10,000 payout for world records and cluster bonuses awarded from $50,000 to $5,000 among the top six.
The World Cup events are being live-streamed for free on FINATV.
Sharon Robb can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org