Richard Weinberger will compete at FINA World Championships in Kazan

Richard Weinberger will compete at FINA World Championships in Kazan

Open-water swimmer qualifies for worlds

Richard Weinberger will swim at FINA World Championships in Russia after a 14th-place finish in Mexico last week.

South Surrey native Richard Weinberger has earned a beth at 2015 World Swimming Championships, after a strong finish at the FINA Open Water Swimming World Cup last weekend in Cozumel, Mexico.

Weinberger – a long-distance swimmer who won a bronze medal at the 2012 Summer Olympics – placed 14th in the men’s 10-km swim in Cozumel, only 14 seconds back of the winner, Jack Burnell of England.

The event featured a very strong field as it was a worlds-qualifier for many countries.

“This was one of the most difficult open-water events I’ve been involved in,” said Weinberger, who now lives in Victoria.

“We were continuously bombarded by the waves and the chops which made it difficult to stroke properly. So you really had to use your core body strength to get through.”

The world championships are set for July 24-Aug. 9 in Kazan, Russia. Another Semiahmoo Peninsula swimmer – White Rock’s Hilary Caldwell – will also be competing at the same event, having qualified earlier this spring.