SOFLO’s Atkinson Takes Silver At FINA/Airweave World Cup Series In Doha

By Sharon Robb

November 3, 2015—South Florida Aquatic Club’s Alia Atkinson worked her way back on the medal podium in her signature event and Pine Crest’s Marta Ciesla swam against an American icon in her international debut Monday at the FINA/Airweave World Cup Series.

Atkinson, 26, a three-time Jamaican Olympian, finished second in the 100-meter breaststroke in 1:07.83. American Molly Hannis won the event cracking 1:07 in 1:06.94 at the Hamad Aquatic Center in Doha, Qatar.

Atkinson was also 17th in the 50-meter freestyle in 26.88 and 20th in the 200-meter individual medley in 2:23.63.

Ciesla, 17, competing against 12-time Olympic medalist Natalie Coughlin, working towards her fourth Olympics, finished sixth in her first international final in 25.60. Ciesla earned the fifth seed in prelims and swam faster in the final.

The high school All-American is representing the U.S. as a member of USA Swimming’s 14-member 18-and-under squad.

The junior gave up competing in the high school region and state meets to represent her country.

In other championship finals:

South African Chad le Clos, after a short layoff from racing, came back strong to win the 100-meter freestyle in 48.96. Florida-bound Maxime Rooney, competing on the USA Swimming 18-and-under team, was sixth in 49.77. Le Clos also won the 200-meter butterfly in 1:55.80 and 50-meter butterfly in 23.43.

Hungary’s Katinka Hosszu dominated the women’s 200-meter freestyle field to win in 1:56.60. She also won the 200-meter individual medley in 2:10.22.

FINA World Cup points leader Cameron van der Burgh won the 50-meter breaststroke in 26.96. American Kevin Cordes, training in Singapore, was third in 27.81 and Michael Andrew was fourth in 28.73.

American Felicia Lee won the 100-meter butterfly in 58.83.

Aussie Mitch Larkin broke the national and Commonwealth records to win the 100-meter backstroke in 52.26. Michael Andrew was sixh in 55.52.

Aussie teammate Emily Seebohm won the 50-meter backstroke in 27.85. Coughlin took silver in 28.23 and Hosszu the bronze in 28.40.

Great Britain’s James Guy won the 400-meter freestyle in 3:46.76.

Frenchwoman Anna Santamans won the 50-meter freestyle in 24.95. Coughlin was third in 25.40.

Hungary’s Daniel Gyurta won the 200-meter breaststroke in 2:10.33.

Seebohm won another gold in the 200-meter backstroke knocking off Hosszu, 2:07.19 to 2:08.73.

New Zealand’s Lauren Boyle won the 800-meter freestyle in 8:24.76.

Hungarian David Verraszto won the 400-meter individual medley in 4:16.67.

This is the third and final cluster that finishes in Doha and Dubai this week. The Doha event concludes on Tuesday. The Dubai event is Friday and Saturday. Prelims are 3 a.m. EST and finals 11 a.m. EST.

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


Author: South Florida Aquatic Club - SOFLO Swimming

Welcome to the South Florida Aquatic club, a premier community swim team dedicated to providing opportunity and encouragement to all team members, from the beginner to the seasoned Olympic athlete in their pursuit of excellence. The year-round development program for competitive swimming features life-enhancing qualities including integrity, discipline, teamwork, sportsmanship and health and fitness. We invite you to navigate the club’s portal for information about the team.

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