World Aquatics Championships records to be broken in Doha 2024. WORLD AQUATICS

Doha 2024 is set to break the records for the highest number of participating athletes and countries represented at the World Aquatics Championships when Qatar hosts the flagship event for the first time from 2-18 February 2024.

The records were announced at a joint press conference held by World Aquatics and the World Aquatics Championships - Doha 2024 Local Organising Committee on the eve of the event. More than 2,600 athletes representing 201 countries and one refugee team will travel to Doha to compete in six aquatic sports, with qualifying spots for the Paris 2024 Olympic Games on offer to add to the excitement. Four of the sports will see a record number of participating countries, including swimming, and three will see a record number of athletes. 

The athletes include are USA artistic swimming World champion, Bill May; defending high diving world champion, Constantin Popovici of Romania; captain of the reigning world water polo champions, Sabrina van der Sloot of the Netherlands; Canada's PanAm Games diving gold medallist, Pamela Ware; and two-time world junior swimming champion, Katie Grimes, of the USA. The five athletes attended the opening press conference where they expressed their excitement for the World Championships and praised the quality of the venues in Doha. 

The six aquatic sports will be held at three venues in Doha, including the state-of-the-art Aspire Dome - the largest aquatic sports complex in the world. The Hamad Aquatic Centre and Old Doha Port will also host competitions providing a spectacular backdrop for the world's best athletes.

Speaking ahead of the World Aquatics Championships, World Aquatics President Husain Al Musallam said: "We are delighted to be in Doha for the World Aquatics Championships. Qatar has proven itself to be an excellent host for major sporting events and we are confident that the athletes will have the best possible conditions to compete." 

An image from the official presentation of the Doha 2024 Aquatics World Championships. WORLD AQUATICS
An image from the official presentation of the Doha 2024 Aquatics World Championships. WORLD AQUATICS

"We have already received positive feedback from athletes who are anxious to get started. As this is the first time the region has hosted the World Championships, we are also excited about the role the event can play in extending our reach and ensuring that everyone can participate, compete in and benefit from aquatic sports". 

Doha 2024 Director General Khaleel Al Jaber commented: "The World Aquatics Championships - Doha 2024 will be a unique celebration of aquatics sports and Qatar's rich heritage. It is fitting that these Championships are set to break participation records, underlining the importance of this event. We are humbled that more athletes and more countries than ever before have chosen to participate. We have no doubt that they will entertain the thousands of spectators in attendance and inspire the next generation of aquatics athletes in Qatar and the wider MENA region." 

More than 1000 volunteers will ensure that fans enjoy an unforgettable experience, while the Fan Zone, located between the Aspire Dome and Hamad Aquatic Centre, will enhance their enjoyment of the competition further. The International Broadcasting Centre and Main Media Centre are also located on site, to ensure a seamless experience for the hundreds of media in attendance. 

Exterior view of the Aspire Dome in Doha. WORLD AQUATICS
Exterior view of the Aspire Dome in Doha. WORLD AQUATICS

The Doha 2024 competition will inspire the next generation of aquatic athletes to "Dive Into Your Thrill" in a country and region with a rich maritime heritage. Doha 2024 ambassadors will visit local schools and clubs to encourage participation, along with mascots 'Nahim", a playful Qatari whale shark, and "Mayfara", a walking, talking, smiling coral, who are closely linked to Qatar's heritage and represent the inclusivity of the Championships. 

The action in Doha kicks off on 2 February with artistic swimming and diving before the Opening Ceremony on 4 February at the Aspire Dome. The first week of competition will also feature open water swimming, followed by high diving and swimming in the second week, while water polo will be played throughout. 

It will be the 21st edition of the World Aquatics Championships. Doha 2024 will bring together more than 2,600 of the world's best athletes to compete in swimming, diving, high diving, water polo, artistic swimming and open water swimming. The World Aquatics Championships were first organised by World Aquatics (formerly FINA) in 1973 with the aim of promoting and developing aquatic sports worldwide.