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Marathon swimmers prepared to battle for Olympic spots at World Champs

A quartet of Britain’s top marathon swimmers are preparing to take the open water at the Old Doha Port for the 2024 World Aquatics Championships in Qatar.

Across the weekend Amber Keegan, Leah Crisp, Toby Robinson and Hector Pardoe will compete in the 10km races as they look to book their place at this summer’s Olympic Games in Paris.

13 places for each of the men’s and women’s races are available in Doha adding to the top three at last year’s Championships in Japan who have already secured their place in Paris.

On Saturday, Bath Performance Centre swimmer Leah Crisp and City of Sheffield’s Amber Keegan take part in the women’s 10km race.

The pair are both coming off their first World Championship appearance in Fukuoka last year, knowing that just a slight improvement in rank will put them right in the hunt for Olympic qualification.

Keegan was 18th in Japan with Crisp in 24th and after both athletes improved their positions at the World Cup event in December they’ll be hoping to go one step further in Doha.

You can watch the entirety of the Championships on Eurovision Sport and you can find all the details on how to follow the competition here.

Excited and well-prepared

Just a day later, Robinson and Pardoe will then take part in the men’s 10km event.

Robinson enters his fourth World Championships with the aim of reaching his first Olympic Games whilst Wales’ Pardoe is looking to make amends in Paris after having to withdraw with an eye-injury in his only event at his first Olympics in Tokyo.

Looking ahead to a pivotal event in the 2024 calendar, Robinson – who alongside Crisp completed their preparation for the competition on a Swim England training camp in Lanzarote – said when the team was announced: “I am hugely excited and well-prepared for the upcoming World Championships.

“This race will determine a world champion but also allocates selection spots for the Olympic Games this summer, so it makes this one of the most important of my career.

“My winter training has gone spectacularly well so far, which gives me huge confidence in getting a great result in Doha.”

You can read the full open water squad announcement here.

Open Water swimming schedule for British swimmers at the World Open Water Swimming Championships 2024 in Doha, Qatar (events times in UK time):

Saturday 3 February

7:30am Women’s 10km race

Sunday 4 February

7:30am Men’s 10km race