You Should Know Why This Olympic Swimmer Gives the Middle Finger Before Each Race

9504 People Viewed - about 27 months ago Sports

Every athlete has a pre-match ritual they go through before competing in whatever it is they do.

Most of the time, these are harmless little superstitions. But raising the middle finger to the crowd? We're pretty sure Santo Condorelli is the only person in sport who does that.

Just to be clear, the Canadian swimmer isn't giving you the finger from the start blocks. He's giving it to his father.

It started early in life when an 8-year-old Santo became increasingly frustrated racing and getting beat by older swimmers.

So, his father and coach Joseph Condorelli came up with the weird idea for his son to flip him off before every race and he's been doing it ever since.

As you might imagine, Condorelli has gotten into trouble with this ritual. Fans unaware of his story might be offended or shocked when they see a bird flipped at them pre-race.

Here's an action shot of Santo Condorelli's middle-finger ritual (skip to 1:25):

"Athletes always have that one thing that gets them going that they need to do," Santo said. "That happens to be mine and still is. Seeing everybody's reaction to it has been interesting."

The 21-year-old will race in the freestyle relay Sunday, the 100-metre freestyle Tuesday and the 50-metre free next Thursday in Rio.

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