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Australian Dolphins | 27 September 2023

"FIFO Dolphin" shaking up the European open water scene

DOLPHIN Moesha Johnson is making the most of being a “FIFO athlete” by shaking up the European open water scene.

The 1500m specialist, who has based herself in Germany to train alongside the dominant German open water swimmers including Florian Wellbrock, won the last leg of the LEN Open Water Cup in Barcelona at the weekend.

The 26-year-old stormed away from the pack to hit the panel first in 2hr:00:36 ahead of Germany’s Lea Boyd (2hr:00:40) and Bettina Fabian (2hr:00:43).

But as the “guest” participant, Johnson’s win did not count towards Cup results and Boyd was recognised as first place, with Fabian second and France’s Caroline Jouisse third (2hr:00:43).

“I think that’s the beauty of basing myself in Europe, I can drop in and drop out of events … it’s not a big deal to fly from Germany to Spain, compete and they fly back,” she said.

“And after the test race for Paris was cancelled recently it was nice to get out there and try out some of the strategies I want to employ during racing.

“I still feel somewhat of a rookie in open water swimming and next 10-11 months is about becoming more professional. Open water swimming is unbelievably strategic, like the Tour de France in water.”

Last month, the test race for the open water venue for the Paris Olympics on the River Seine was cancelled because of poor water quality.

“Should I be selected, I am not worried about the water quality at all heading into the Olympics. The French are working overtime to be ready and if they continue on the same trajectory, it’s going to be fine,” she said.

Johnson, who was part of the mixed 4x1500m relay team that won bronze at the World Championships in Fukuoka, will next race at the Queensland Open Water Championships at Coolum, on Queensland Sunshine Coast on October 14.