Dublin 2023 can “inspire a generation” of Irish swimmers

By Nick Hope
Aquatics correspondent in Dublin

Olympians Daniel Wiffen and Ellen Walshe are backing the inaugural LEN European U23 Championships to have a significant impact on young swimmers throughout Ireland.

Dublin 2023 will take place from 11-13 August at the Sport Ireland: National Aquatics Centre in the Irish capital.

It will feature around 400 of the best emerging talents from 42 nations.

“It’s amazing to have a big swimming competition in Ireland,” Wiffen told LEN ahead of the event.

“Hopefully it’s going to inspire a new generation and hopefully I’ll swim fast, get on the podium and definitely inspire some distance swimmers!”

Walshe added; “Swimming (traditionally) isn’t that big in Ireland, so hopefully having this meet in Dublin will bring the next generation along with us.

“Hopefully it will motivate some of those coming to watch to take it up and follow what we’re doing, so having them in the crowd will be amazing.”

Images courtesy of Swim Ireland and World Aquatics

Wiffen in particular impressed at the World Aquatics Championships in Fukuoka, Japan, last month, finishing fourth in both the 800m and 1500m freestyle events – the former saw him set a new European record landmark time. 

“I was very happy with some of my swims at the World Champs and I performed quite well,” continued Wiffen.

“I’m not expecting PB’s (personal bests) here, but wouldn’t be surprised if they came; I’m just aiming for the podium and aiming to get some medals for Ireland!”

Aside from Wiffen, Walshe and fellow World short course medallist Mona McSharry, other leading names lining up for Dublin 2023 include new World silver medallist Krzysztof Chmieleski (Poland), reigning European champion Isabelle Gose (Germany), World junior record holder Peter Mitsin (Bulgaria) and double European junior gold medallist Leah Schlosshan (Great Britain).

In addition to a host of European junior medallists from this year’s event in Belgrade, athletes from the United States, South Africa and Zimbabwe will also join the line-up in Dublin.

The USA’s team features several NCAA champions and 2021 World short course bronze medallist Isabelle Stadden; while South African duo Pietre Coetze and Matt Sates will also be major draws for fans attending the event.

“I know some of the South African swimmers and I saw some of the Team USA guys yesterday training and there’s a lot of excitement,” said Wiffen.

Walshe continued; “Opening up the event to the USA and South Africa is a pretty good idea because it gets more (top) athletes here with good racing opportunities for everyone, so I’m excited to get out against them and in front of the Irish fans.” 

Wiffen concluded; “For Ireland, we have some young guys who are really looking forward to this and I hopefully they embrace it because it’s for many of them the first time to swim in their own back garden in a major competition so it’ll be very.”

For start-lists and results throughout Dublin 2023 bookmark the following link:


Follow the @LENAquatics and @SwimIreland social media channels throughout Dublin 2023 for all of the latest action, reaction and behind-the-scenes videos from what promises to be three incredible days of competition.