Check out the weird ritual this Canadian swimmer does before every race


Canadian Swimmer Flips Off Dad Before Every Race

The middle finger might not seem like the most inspirational of gestures, but it's what Canadian swimmer Santo Condorelli relies on for his pre-race ritual.

Before every swim, Condorelli looks towards his father and coach Joseph, and flips him the bird. Don't worry about any tension here - his dad gives it right back.

They came up with the ritual when Santo was eight years old, as a way of getting in the zone.

"You've got to build your confidence yourself and say eff everybody else that you're racing," Santo tells the Canadian Press his dad told him when they first started doing it.

"He said 'Every time you're behind the blocks, give me the finger and I'll give it back to you'."

The rude gesture has got Condorelli Jr into trouble before. "I'm not trying to piss people off. I just put it in the middle of my forehead now. My dad is definitely giving it to me and I can see him from a mile away," he says.

Joseph says: "It's a communication between him and I to calm down and get ready. Racing is about being at peace." Giving the middle finger is an easy way for Santos to internalise any aggravation in preparation for the race.

Condorelli swam the 4x100m freestyle relay yesterday, and keep an eye out for him and his middle finger in the men's 100m freestyle today, as well as the 50m freestyle and 100m butterfly on Thursday. He beat the formidable Michael Phelps to silver last year at a 100m butterfly event in Minneapolis, so he's definitely one to watch.