15 Olympic Athletes to Watch on the Water at the Paris 2024 Olympics

The excitement is electric! Just like everyone else, we are gearing up for the biggest competition of the year – the Paris Olympics. And of course, our eyes will be glued to the water, watching all the action unfold in the Olympic water sports 2024. 

But that's not all – we're also excited to see the top Olympic athletes to watch take center stage. For all the details on which players you should be tracking from July 26 to August 11, keep reading!

The Top Olympic Athletes to Watch 2024

As avid boaters, we’re naturally drawn to the events taking place on the water. Who wouldn't dream of spending days boating and nights cheering on Team USA in the Olympic water sports 2024? 


This year, Paris is playing host to some of the most thrilling aquatic competitions. So, grab your metaphorical paddles (or real ones, if you're lucky) because here are the premier Olympic athletes to watch 2024:

1. Caleb Dressel - Olympic Swimming 2024

Starting off strong, Caleb Dressel (Team USA) recently secured victory in the 50-meter freestyle at the June U.S. Olympic Trials, solidifying his position as a favorite for the upcoming Paris games. 

Known for his dominance in freestyle and butterfly sprinting events, Dressel has already competed in two Olympics before Paris. Interestingly, he took a two-year break from the sport after becoming a father but triumphantly returned to competition in 2024. And according to Team USA, his hobbies include boating, wakeboarding and spending time outdoors!

2. Katie Ledecky - Olympic Swimming 2024

A force to be reckoned with in Olympic water sports 2024, Katie Ledecky (Team USA) is a crowd favorite. She's been showcasing her freestyle talents on the world stage since the young age of 15, taking home gold at the 2012 London Games. 

She currently has ten Olympic medals (7 gold), which makes Ledecky's mastery undeniable. Plus, her impressive performance at the trials made her the first woman to win four titles in a single event! We also love that Ledecky has always emphasized the life skill aspect of swimming, a sentiment she's carried since her youth.

3. Dusan Mandic - Olympic Water Polo 2024 

A fierce player on the water polo field, Dusan Mandic (Team Serbia), has struck gold at the past two Olympics! Boasting two gold medals and a bronze, he'll lead the Serbian team in their quest for another golden victory. (Even in the Champions League Final Eight, he was elected the best player.)

4. Alex Bowen - Olympic Water Polo 2024 

For his third Olympic appearance, Alex Bowen (Team USA) is one of the top goal scorers (he scored 18 points in the Tokyo Games). He has been integral to the national squad for the previous two Olympic cycles because of his lethal precision and skill. It'll be a thrill to see him compete as one of the best Olympic athletes to watch 2024 in Paris.

5. Carissa Moore - Olympic Surfing 2024

Don't miss your chance to watch one of the top Olympic water sports 2024 athletes because Carissa Moore (Team USA) plans to retire after the Paris games. We're excited to see her compete again, especially since she was crowned the first Olympic gold medal winner in women's surfing at the 2020 Tokyo Games. 

It's hard to believe her rookie year was all the way back in 2010! But even with competitive surfing on the back burner, she says she might be back one day.

6. Gabriel Medina - Olympic Surfing 2024

Three-time world champion Gabriel Medina (Team Brazil) is a force to be reckoned with in the men's surfing competition taking place in Tahiti. Looking to rebound after a fourth-place finish at the Tokyo Games, Medina was instilled with a love for surfing by his father, who was an amateur surfer. 

This passion has also led to a few close encounters with boats while surfing – an excellent reminder to practice boating safety around populated areas!

7. Bill May - Olympic Artistic Swimming 2024

This is a monumental year for artistic swimming! For the first time, men are being allowed to compete. Enter Bill May (Team USA), who has been chasing the dream of an Olympic debut for over 20 years through the world of synchronized swimming. He even came out of retirement in 2015 when the chance arose to compete in the World Aquatics Championship, where he took home the gold!

8. Nevin Harrison - Olympic Canoeing 2024

Nevin Harrison, another Team USA member, made history as well! Back in Tokyo, she became the first American woman to win Olympic gold in canoeing. And at just 21 years old, this champion won the C-1 200m sprint trials. But her journey has only just begun – can she repeat her success in Paris this summer? 

9. Joe Clarke - Canoeing

Another water sports fanatic, Joe Clarke (Team Great Britain), has been competing internationally since 2009, with a focus on the K1 and KX1 categories. Even more impressively, he became the first British athlete to ever win gold in K1 canoe slalom at the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio! He’s absolutely on our must-watch list for Olympic canoeing 2024.

10. Tom Daley - Olympic Diving 2024

A familiar face in diving, Tom Daley (Team Great Britain) is a multi-event specialist. He's not just an Olympic gold medalist in the men's synchronized 10-meter platform event at the 2020 Olympics but also boasts three additional bronze medals. 

Adding to his impressive list of achievements, he's topped the charts and emerged victorious at the World Championships in 2009, 2015, and 2017. There’s a reason he’s one of the most famous sportsmen in GB!

11. Quan Hongchan - Olympic Diving 2024

Team China's springboard diving star, Quan Hongchan, has taken the world by storm. At just 14 years old at the Tokyo Games (held in 2021), she secured three perfect 10s and a gold medal in the individual 10-meter platform event. And with such remarkable talent, she's undoubtedly one of the top Olympic athletes to watch 2024 – and this is just the beginning of her career!

12. Joe Choong - Olympic Modern Pentathlon 2024

Fresh off his Tokyo Olympic gold medal win, Joe Choong (Team Great Britain) is one the premier Olympic water sports 2024 athletes to watch in Paris. Riding high on consecutive World Championship victories (2022 & 2023), he aims to join the elite group of three athletes who have ever achieved Olympic modern pentathlon gold on three separate occasions.

13. Olivier Zeidler - Olympic Rowing 2024

A triumphant force in the world of Olympic rowing 2024, Olivier Zeidler (Team Germany) is the grandson and nephew of Olympic rowing medalist Hans-Johann Farber and Judith Zeidler. Despite lacking Olympic experience, he has won three world titles and the single sculls World Cup in 2023. The entire rowing community is excited to watch him do what he does best in Paris!

14. Kara Kohler - Olympic Rowing 2024

A Tokyo veteran and 2012 bronze medalist, Kara Kohler (Team USA) is back for her third Olympics. After a ninth-place finish in the single sculls at the 2020 Games, she's hungry for redemption and eyeing the podium in Paris. Her first-place win at the trials proves she's a player to watch closely with among the Olympic rowing 2024 athletes!

15. Eleanor Aldridge - Olympic Sailing 2024

Fresh, young talent is steering the future of Olympic sailing 2024, and Ellie Aldridge (Team Great Britain) is a prime example. Essentially, the kiteboarding event is making its Olympic debut in Paris, and Ellie stands out as a top talent to watch. 

We’re excited to watch her compete as she secured a silver medal in last year's test event. Additionally, she claimed the first major senior title of her Olympic career at the 2023 Formula Kite European Championships. And funny enough, her career in sailing began after a boat she was on in her youth capsized, and she was still brave enough to start the sport!

Read Next: Learn More About Sailing

Mark Your Calendars: Can't-Miss Olympic Athletes to Watch 2024

Whether you're catching the action from your couch, your boat's flat screen, or even live in Paris, we know you're excited for the 2024 Paris Olympics as much as we are! Stay tuned for more updates on the Games and all things water-related.