DNOWS Header

Image Map

Thursday, June 21, 2012

Who's Going To The Olympics? The 10K Conundrum

The beauty of the Olympic Marathon Swimming 10km is that 50 athletes from around the world have qualified for the Olympic final on August 9th (women) and 10th (men).

The conundrum is that the athletes and coaches do not know which 50 will be in the starting line in London.

The final decisions have yet to be announced by FINA.

Athletes from five continents and 31 countries qualified for the Olympic 10K based on their performances at the 2011 World Championships in Shanghai and the recent Olympic qualifier in Portugal. Usually these qualifications led to a formal invitation. The invitation is usually accepted and the athletes represent their country at the Olympics.

Swim fast, qualify in the top echelon and Olympic dreams are realized.

That is conventional wisdom.

But the qualification process and the invitation acceptance for the open water swimmers at the Olympics is unconventional. The rules are unlike pool swimming. The process was developed to enable as many countries around the world to be represented in the Olympic marathon swim. This process is considered to be one of the reasons for the explosive global growth of the sport. For the London Olympic Games, swimmers from Greece, Germany, Russia, USA, Australia, Spain, Belgium, France, Tunisia, Canada, Bulgaria, Italy, South Africa, Japan, Ukraine, Ecuador, Portugal, Kazakhstan, Venezuela, Hungary, New Zealand, Egypt, Great Britain, Brazil, Czech Republic, Switzerland, China, Poland, Croatia, Hong Kong, and Malaysia qualified.

On the face of it, the qualification process served its purpose and met its goal.

But not everything turned out to be perfect and clear-cut in the open water world.

Problem occurs when the national governing bodies of certain qualified athletes declined the invitation to swim at the Olympics. Similar to Israel at the 2008 Beijing Olympics, both New Zealand and the Netherlands turned down the invitations extended to their top athletes to participate in the 2012 Olympic 10K Marathon Swim in London.

This is where the qualification process is ambiguous and subject to interpretation. While it was not the intention of FINA, the qualification process simply does not specifically spell out what athletes should be extended the 25th and final invitation to the Olympic 10K. At this time, athletes from Mexico, Ireland and Guam are anxiously waiting for an official decision from FINA if they will receive an invitation.

On the men’s side, the four athletes in question involve Csaba Gercsak of Hungary (who finished 14th in 1:46:30.7 in the FINA Olympic Marathon Swim Qualifier in Portugal), Chris Bryan of Ireland (who finished 15th in 1:46:30.7), Kane Radford of New Zealand (who finished 27th in 1:47:02.7) and Benjamin Schulte of Guam (who finished 52nd in 2:00:56.4). When Swimming New Zealand declined the invitation extended to Radford, this opened up the 25th and final spot to the next swimmer on the list. Depending on the interpretation of the rules, either Bryan of Ireland or Schulte of Guam are eligible. Schulte would receive the invitation if FINA rules that the “next available swimmer” should be the Oceania Continental Representative since Schulte was the next fastest swimmer from Oceania after Radford. On the other hand, Bryan would receive the invitation if FINA rules that the next available swimmer should be the next fastest swimmer on the list since he was barely edged out for the European Continental Representative by Gercsak.

In the cruel world of sports, Gercsak and Bryan were given the exact same finish time in one of the closest races in Olympic qualification history, but according to the video cameras that capture the images down to the 1000th of a second, Gercsak just barely edged out Bryan by the slimmest of margins.

On the women’s side, the three athletes in question involve Cara Baker of New Zealand (who finished 17th in 1:45:06.1), Linsy Heister of the Netherlands (who finish 16th in 1:45:06.0) and Lizeth Rueda Santos of Mexico (who finished 19th in 1:46:06.6). When Swimming New Zealand declined the invitation extended to Baker, and Royal Dutch Swimming Federation subsequently declined the invitation to Heister, this opened up the possibility of Rueda Santos will be invited as the next available swimmer since there were no other Oceania representatives in the qualifier.

FINA will soon make its decision which one of these athletes are invited – and which ones will stay home to watch.

Stay tuned, but these athletes will be in London:

1. Keri-Anne Payne (GBR)
2. Martina Grimaldi (ITA)
3. Marianna Lymperta (GRE)
4. Melissa Gorman (AUS)
5. Cecilia Biagioli (ITA)
6. Poliana Okimoto (BRA)
7. Jana Pechanova (CZE)
8. Angela Maurer (GER)
9. Swann Oberson (SUI)
10. Erika Villaecija (ESP)
11. Haley Anderson (USA)
12. Eva Risztov (HUN)
13. Yanqiao Fang (CHN)
14. Zsofia Balazs (CAN)
15. Ophelie Aspord (FRA)
16. Natalia Charlos (POL)
17. Anna Guseva (RUS)
18. Karla Sitic (CRO)
19. Wing Yung Natasha Terri Tang (HKG)
20. Yumi Kida (JPN)
21. Olga Beresnyeva (UKR)
22. Yanel Pinto (VEN)
23. Heidi Gan (MAS)
24. Jessica Roux (RSA)
25. ?

1. Spyridon Gianniotis (GRE)
2. Thomas Lurz (GER)
3. Sergey Bolshakov (RUS)
4. Alex Meyer (USA)
5. Ky Hurst (AUS)
6. Francisco Jose Hervas (ESP)
7. Brian Ryckeman (BEL)
8. Julien Sauvage (FRA)
9. Vladimir Dyatchin (RUS)
10. Andreas Waschburger (GER)
11. Oussama Mellouli (TUN)
12. Richard Weinberger (CAN)
13. Petar Stoychev (BUL)
14. Valerio Cleri (ITA)
15. Troyden Prinsloo (RSA)
16. Yasunari Hirai (JPN)
17. Igor Chervynskiy (UKR)
18. Ivan Enderica Ochoa (ECU)
19. Arseniy Lavrentyev (POR)
20. Yuriy Kudinov (KAZ)
21. Erwin Maldonado (VEN)
22. Csaba Gercsak (HUN)
23. Mazen Aziz (EGY)
24. Daniel Fogg (GBR)
25. ?

Photo courtesy of Dr. Jim Miller. Copyright © 2012 by World Open Water Swimming Association

1 comment:

  1. I don't know what the FINA rules have fixed previously. I just know some swimmers who finished in the nearest position (usually the 11th position) to qualify not at Setubal, but Shangai World Championships, are claiming their rights to go Olympics. Who is in the right side & why? I highly believes New Zealand swimmers must go to London because is the most fair situation to all swimmers

    ReplyDelete

Thank you very much for your interest in the world of open water swimming.

The Staff of the World Open Water Swimming Association

2014 Global Open Water Swimming Conference

Learn more...
Courtesy of WOWSA, Huntington Beach, California.

CLICK HERE TO REGISTER FOR THE CONFERENCE

The Global Open Water Swimming Conference is a conference on the sport of open water swimming, marathon swimming and swimming during triathlons and multi-sport endurance events.

The conference which has been attended by enthusiasts and luminaries from 6 continents, is devoted to providing information about the latest trends, race tactics, training techniques, equipment, psychological preparation, race organization and safety practices used in the sports of open water swimming, marathon swimming and triathlons.

The conference's mission is to provide opportunities to listen and meet many of the world's most foremost experts in open water swimming, and to meet and discuss the sport among swimmers, coaches, administrators, event organizers, sponsors, vendors, officials, escort pilots, and volunteers from kayakers to safety personnel.

Dozens of presentations at the 2014 Conference at the Mount Stuart House cover numerous aspects of the vast and growing world of open water swimming where attendees can learn and share the latest trends, race tactics, training modalities, swimming techniques, equipment, race organization, logistics, operations, and safety practices for open water swimming as a solo swimmer, competitive athlete, fitness swimmer, masters swimmer, triathlete, multi-sport athlete, administrator, race promoter, sponsor or referee.

The conference was first held in Long Beach, California as part of the 2010 USA Swimming National Open Water Swimming Championships. It has since been held on the Queen Mary in California, at Columbia University and the United Nations in New York City, and in Cork, Ireland. This year in September, it comes to another iconic location, the Mount Stuart House on the Isle of Bute in Scotland.

"The Global Open Water Swimming Conference was started due to the desire and need for athletes, coaches, referees, administrators, race directors, promoters and sponsors from around the world to share, collect and learn information about the growing sports of open water swimming, marathon swimming and triathlons," said founder Steven Munatones. "Other swimming conferences usually offering nothing on open water swimming or perhaps a speech or two, but we thought open water swimming deserves its own global conference. It is great that the community shares its information via the online social network, but there is nothing like meeting other open water swimming enthusiasts face-to-face and talking about the sport from morning to night."

Speakers at the conference include English Channel swimmers, ice swimmers, record holders, renowned coaches, world champions, professional marathon swimmers, renowned race directors, officials and administrators from the Africa, Americas, Asia, Europe and Oceania.

"Because the audience is passionate and educated about the sport and its finest practitioners, the Global Open Water Swimming Conference is also the location of the induction ceremonies for the International Marathon Swimming Hall of Fame and the annual WOWSA Awards that recognize the World Open Water Swimming Man of the Year, the World Open Water Swimming Woman of the Year, the World Open Water Swimming Performance of the Year, and the World Open Water Swimming Offering of the Year. Special Lifetime Achievement Awards are also occasionally presented to individuals who have made significant contributions to the sport over their career."

The 2014 Global Open Water Swimming Conference Programme

Wednesday, September 17th
Leave Glasgow to commence 2-day tour of Scotland [closest international airport is Glasgow]

Thursday, September 18th
Stay Mainland, North of Scotland

Friday, September 19th
14:00 - Swim Loch Lomond
17:00 - Head to Isle of Bute
19:30 - Scottish Banquet
21:30 - Dinner Dance

Saturday, September 20th
09:00 - Registration & Coffee
10:00 - Speeches
12:20 - Lunch and WOWSA Awards
13:40 – Speeches
15:40 - Round Table
19:00 - International Marathon Swimming Hall of Fame Dinner & Induction Ceremony

Sunday, September 21st
09:00 - Registration & Coffee
10:00 - Speeches
14:30 - Swim in St Ninian's Bay on the Isle of Bute

The luminaries of the open water swimming world who will be honored in Scotland will include:

* Sandra Bucha (U.S.A.), International Swimming Hall of Fame Honor Open Water Swimmer and International Marathon Swimming Hall of Fame Honour Swimmer
* Jon Erikson (U.S.A.), International Swimming Hall of Fame Honor Open Water Swimmer
* Claudio Plit (Argentina), International Swimming Hall of Fame Honor Open Water Swimmer
* Judith van Berkel-de Njis (Netherlands), International Swimming Hall of Fame Honor Open Water Swimmer
* David Yudovin (U.S.A.), International Swimming Hall of Fame Honor Open Water Swimmer
* Mercedes Gleitze (Great Britain), International Swimming Hall of Fame Honor Open Water Swimmer
* George Young (Canada), International Swimming Hall of Fame Honor Open Water Swimmer
* Dale Petranech (U.S.A.), International Swimming Hall of Fame Honor Open Water Contributor
* Melissa Cunningham (Australia), 2013 Irving Davids-Captain Roger Wheeler Memorial Award winner
* Vojislav Mijić (Serbia), International Marathon Swimming Hall of Fame Honour Swimmer
* James Anderson (U.S.A.), International Marathon Swimming Hall of Fame Honour Administrator
* Dr. Jane Katz (U.S.A.), International Marathon Swimming Hall of Fame Honour Administrator
* Indonesian Swimming Federation, , International Marathon Swimming Hall of Fame Honour Organisation
* Elizabeth Fry (U.S.A.), International Marathon Swimming Hall of Fame Honour Swimmer
* Pádraig Mallon (Ireland), the 2013 World Open Water Swimming Man of the Year
* Olga Kozydub (Russia), the 2013 World Open Water Swimming Woman of the Year
* Bering Strait Swim (international team), the 2013 World Open Water Swimming Performance of the Year
* International Ice Swimming Association (Ram Barkai, founder, South Africa), the 2013 World Open Water Swimming Offering of the Year

For additional articles on the 2014 Global Open Water Swimming Conference, visit:

* Olga Kozydub To Be Honored In Scotland
* Pádraig Mallon To Be Honored In Mount Stuart Castle
* Mount Stuart House, Splendid Setting For Swimming
* Colleen Blair To Kick-off Global Open Water Swimming Conference
* The Man Who Swims Better Than He Walks
* Joining In The Sea Goddess At The Hall Of Fame
* Mercedes Gleitze To Be Honored In Scotland
* The Incredible Career Of Merceded Gleitze
* Jon Erikson To Be Honoured In Florida
* The Incredible Career Of Mercedes Gleitze
* St Ninian's Bay To Host International Swim Conference

Copyright © 2014 by World Open Water Swimming Association

Swim Across the English Channel...

OWSM-CM

Who else is looking for a qualified open water swimming coach to help them swim across the English Channel?

Chloë McCardel is a 6-time English Channel Swimmer who inspires and instructs. Access featured content by Chloë in this month's issue of the Open Water Swimming Magazine. Published monthly by WOWSA, the Open Water Swimming Magazine is a digital, interactive publication made available exclusively to WOWSA members. See what you've been missing! Become a WOWSA member today!

Open Water Swimming Magazine


Open Water Swimming Magazine

The Open Water Swimming Magazine is the monthly magazine entirely focused on open water swimming heroes and heroines of every age, ability, and background. Published by the World Open Water Swimming Association, the Open Water Swimming Magazine is a free benefit to WOWSA members.

WOWSA Member Benefits include 12 issues of the Open Water Swimming Magazine, the annual 276-page Open Water Swimming Almanac, a free listing in Sponsor My Swim, outstanding product discounts from FINIS, an entry in Openwaterpedia and more...
LEARN MORE

The Other Shore


The Other Shore follows world record holder and legendary swimmer Diana Nyad as she comes out of a thirty-year retirement to re-attempt an elusive dream: swimming 103 miles non-stop from Cuba to Florida without the use of a shark cage. Her past and present collide in her obsession with a feat that nobody has ever accomplished. At the edge of The Devil’s Triangle, tropical storms, sharks, venomous jellyfish, and one of the strongest ocean currents in the world, all prove to be life-threatening realities. Timothy Wheeler’s documentary brings Diana Nyad’s extraordinary adventure to life as Diana sets out to prove that will and determination are all you need to make the unimaginable possible.
LEARN MORE...

2014 Open Water Swimming Almanac



An Almanac for Open Water Swimming

An almanac is essentially a body of knowledge which is so complete that it enables people in different fields to make predictions about the future of their respective industries.

This, for example, was the purpose of the traditional farmers almanacs. It enabled farmers to determine as accurately as possible which crops to plant for the greatest harvests in a given year.

But the farmers almanac was just one example among many.
There are, of course, many different kinds of almanacs.

In fact, there is even one for open water swimming...

Preview the Open Water Swimming Almanac:
https://www.worldopenwaterswimmingassociation.com/preview-open-water-swimming-almanac


The trends are very clear.
The tide is rising for open water swimming.

SponsorMySwim.com

Open Water Swimming Event Sanctioning

World Professional Marathon Swimming Federation

Open Water Race Calendar

Coaches Education Program