FINA Can Neither Survive Nor Be Rebuilt Without Cultural Revolution & Reform

One rule for them, another for the others: cases sit side by side on the FINA website - same substance, very different penalty: Thai guy gets 4 years; Russian polo player, 1 year.

Editorial: The protest of the three anti-doping experts who have quit FINA boils down to the words that sum up the autocratic style of governance that has dominated FINA for the past four decades: “FINA chose to ignore our advice…”. The questions now turn to: on what issues have they been ignored before and what consequences have there been for swimmers and swimming? Add to ‘ignored’ the victory of ‘politics and money’ over doing the right and professional thing and you get to the heart of the FINA crisis. The very structures on which FINA is built need dismantling. The federation is no longer fit for purpose. The days of grace and favour are over, the era in which blazers remain in the top seats for four decades, surviving woe after woe as untouchables, rip for raising to the ground. FINA is all of you minus the decision-making. Its leadership appears ever more to live in a house of cards. It must fall to be rebuilt

All SwimVortex articles are placed in our archive after five days, the library of content available to subscribers.
Log In Register



A fine editorial but it’s destined to fall on deaf ears. Has any progress been made in plans to create a new international body?

Lawrie Cox

Unfortunately I have to agree with longstroke that those who do not want to listen never will. It is clear that the bureau will continue on its merry way and continue to ignore the comments or make sure that anyone who speaks out against the bureau line is removed. Having experienced that now on three seperate occasions the body is beyond repair.
It was as Sir humphrey would say courageous for Mack Horton (drugs), Jacco (night finals) to speak out. Where was the leadership from Australia Swimming about three days behind saying how wonderful they were for speaking out. Neither should have ever been put in that position.
Of course if we had any real representatives at FINA level then it would have been addressed at that level but Miller and Dunn are totally useless in that regard.
The structure of a new body should not bother waiting for Australia to be involved as the current Board would have trouble finding the way out of a wet paper bag let alone an argument with the Bureau.

Steve Levy

I’ve been on a Charles Bukowski kick lately. One of my favorite lines applies here…

“If you want to know who your friends are, get yourself a jail sentence.”

Pretty much sums up the relationship between FINA and the doping elements in water sports.

I say let it fall on deaf ears and start building SOMETHING. Craig, start with a simple website, a message, a pledge, quotes from athletes, and way to become part of the clean chlorinated community. Let those who sign up choose their category: Olympian past/present, Coach, non-Olympian but currently chlorinated, Parent, etc. No need to wait for a country’s association to pull their heads from their arses and offer a thumbs up. I suspect there are plenty of Horton’s & King’s present & past who would jump on this.

With fellow industry leaders who were equally tired of the profession’s downward spiral, I’m in the process of building the first-ever global recruiting association. Happy to share all notes, processes created, and published public communications with you.

Craig Lord

Thanks Steve … the seed has started to grow…

Leave a comment

Post a comment with your SwimVortex Account. Don't have a SwimVortex Account, Sign Up?

(*) Fields are required!