Sunday, May 04, 2008

I stand corrected on Olympic open water qualifying

I am the open water student, Munatones is the master. From Steve Munatones:

"... There are 11 remaining spots to fill in the men's 10K at the second qualifying swim in Beijing on June 1st. One of these spots will be allotted to the Chinese representative. The remaining 10 spots will be given to the first 10 finishers; but, each country only gets one spot.

Because Mark Warkentin placed in the top 10, the U.S. does not get any spot. In the same way, countries like Australia , Netherlands , Italy , Greece and Belgium also do not have the opportunity to qualify a second teammate at the Beijing race (because they also placed a swimmer in the top ten in Seville ).

Therefore, Chip Peterson will not be eligible to try to qualify again for the Beijing Olympics. That is, your second paragraph is incorrect (i.e., …if Chip Peterson is going to go…the selection will be up to USA Swimming).

If possible, please clarify this for your readers because this may lead to many misunderstandings and some of your readers will send me emails on this subject, accusing FINA and/or USA Swimming of making the process confusing, misleading, inappropriate or politically based. Like you, I am only trying to promote the sport, its heroes and participants, but I would rather focus on the positive vs. the negative.

In fact, the qualification explanation is quite clear – unfortunately, the entire explanation has not been adequately presented to the general public in a comprehensive manner. Therefore, when picking up bits and pieces of the qualification criteria, misunderstandings are often made. Please help me try to avoid this situation, if possible.

By the way, the only country on the men's side that has 2 swimmers in the Olympic 10K final is Russia . In the same way, the only two countries on the women's side that have 2 swimmers in the women's 10K final are Great Britain and Brazil . On the men's side, there will be 24 countries represented in the field of 25 male swimmers and 23 countries represented in the field of 25 female swimmers. ..." -- Steve Munatones

Go to for a primer on open water swimming

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