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Croatian swimmer nominated for Best European Young Athlete award

Franko Grgic (Photo: Croatian Olympic Committee/HOO)

25 September 2019 – Talented young Croatian swimmer Franko Grgic has been nominated for the prestigious European Olympic Committees Piotr Nurowski Prize for Best European Young Athlete 2019. 

Grgic is among five finalists for the award which will be presented on 26 October in Warsaw. 

The 16-year-old rom Split on Croatia’s Dalmatian coast set multiple records at the 7th FINA World Junior Swimming Championships in Budapest this summer. 

Grgic won the gold in the men’s 800 metre freestyle and 1500 metre freestyle events. The Croatian set a new world record when he won the 1500 metre final in a time of 14:46.09 minutes. The result was an amazing 10.46 seconds faster than his previous best. He broke the old world junior record by more than 5 and a half seconds. 

The world senior record for that distance is 14:31:02 and Grgic is confident that he will have the chance to break that in the future. 

To show how dominant Grgic was in the final, silver medal winner, Thomas Neill from Australia, finished in a time of 13.10 seconds. The Croatian was 19.08 seconds faster than the third place finisher Ilia Sibirtsev from Russia.

Grgic won the 800 metre final a few days earlier in a time of 7:45.92 minutes, which was a new Croatian record. Grgic overtook the previous national record of 7:51.78 held by Marin Mogic. Grgic is definitely a name of the future in swimming and fans may get to see him make some waves at the 2020 Olympic Games in Tokyo. Check out footage from the race below. 

The EOC Piotr Nurowski Prize for Best European Young Athlete was created in 2011 to remember Olympism Piotr Nurowski, and through his example and his memory encourage young athletes to pursue a career in top sport, as well as inspire future generations to adopt a healthy lifestyle based on Olympic values and principles.

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