— Published 3 August 2023

The open water test event under threat

Threat to the open water swimming test event. The fourth stage of the World Cup, the event organised under the aegis of World Aquatics is scheduled for this weekend in Paris (5 and 6 August), in the Seine between the Pont Alexandre III and the Pont de l’Alma. But heavy rainfall in the French capital over the last few days, and forecast for the rest of the week, could force the organisers to cancel the competition. There is a risk that the rain will wash wastewater back into the river, causing the sewers to overflow. According to the authorities concerned, there is a real risk that the Seine could become too polluted for swimming, and therefore for an Open Water World Cup event. The daily analyses were judged to be excellent at the beginning of June, giving the green light to the organisation of the test event for the Paris 2024 Games. But Pierre Rabadan, the deputy mayor of Paris responsible for sport and the Seine, admitted: “If it rains torrents for a week, it will be complicated”. A meeting is scheduled for Thursday night to authorise the training session scheduled for Friday 4 August at 7.30am, on the basis of the latest water sample taken. Another meeting is scheduled for the following night. If the analysis of the sample is not positive, the event will be cancelled. Note: the Paris 2024 OCOG and World Aquatics have planned to postpone the events by two or three days next year in the event of storms and heavy rain during the Olympic Games.