The RFEN wants to “think big” in the open waters of Paris 2024 after María de Valdés' silver


Sergi García, responsible for the open water modality of the Royal Spanish Swimming Federation (RFEN), acknowledged that they are “euphoric” about the World Cup silver in 10 km achieved by María de Valdés, a success that “she deserved”, and the another Olympic place for Ángela Martínez, and made it clear that they must now “think big” for the Paris Games.

“We are elated, but we are not surprised because it was in the plan. We knew what we were capable of, I already said that we were going for everything, we came to get the Olympic places and at the moment we are 100%. We know what we have worked for, an excellent job that we have had in our sights for a year and that is why everything is coming out embroidered,” García celebrated in statements provided by the RFEN.

The coach was optimistic for the Games. “Looking ahead to Paris, you have to think big. Getting to the Games is difficult, but then the test itself is one of the easiest because there are 23 and 25 rivals and those who will come from the pool, if they have never participated in water open, they will have a very difficult time,” he warned.

Regarding this Saturday's test, he warned that “sometimes strategies are forced because it depends on the test” and that Valdés did “what he knows how to do, as he already tried in Budapest or Rome” and his intention to swim in the head where she feels “very comfortable.” “She used to fail at the endings, in which she wore herself out, but today she has shown that she nailed it at the end,” she pointed out.

“Angela's thing, maybe the starting position from the dock has hurt her a little. She started in the first straight of a complicated position and she had to be very attentive, coming back from start to finish. She swam very well, with a lot of poise and in the end she has placed herself among the top fifteen and the Olympic place,” he added about Ángela Martínez, thirteenth classified.

García celebrated that everything is going “smoothly.” “María deserved it, it is the culmination. She can have as many years of swimming as she wants, but it means giving meaning to everything, to all the years, to all the experiences she has had, good and bad. María has the ability to fall and of getting up many times and that's why you manage to overcome. We are betting a lot on this discipline, we know what we have to do,” he said.