Despite earlier releases to the contrary, both Germany and Italy have expanded their Olympic rosters in the final days seemingly contrary to their own Olympic criteria, but within line of reasonability and presenting the best possible Olympic squad.
The Italians have entered Luca Dotto and Filipo Magnini in the 100 free, though neither met the qualifying criteria in the allotted period. The pair was entered for relay purposes anyway, and both had swum FINA ”A” times at Worlds, and now their individual entries gives Italy two additional possible finalists. Dotto finished 7th at last year’s World Championships, whereas Magnini is the 2007 World Champion in the event.
Germany, similarly, has relented to allow Hendrik Feldwehr to occupy the second spot in the men’s 100 breaststroke, despite not even competing at either German Trials or the European Championships, the country’s two self-defined qualifying meets. He advanced to the semi-finals at last year’s World Championships in the 100 with a 1:00.91, but has struggled this season after suffering a groin injury.
With none of his countrymates laying claim to the second spot, however, he was given the opportunity to swim alongsideChristian Vom Lehn. It will be interesting to see if the Germans gamble on a prelims relay spot for Feldwehr; at his best, he’s probably slightly better in this 200, but its hard to imagine he’ll be at his best in London. The Germans are medal contenders in that event, but can’t afford to risk too much in prelims.
Germany has also entered Marco di Carli in the men’s 100 free on the strength of his 2011 season, though he didn’t meet the qualifying standards at the appointed meets either. This could actually work out brilliantly in the Germans’ favor, if it was a planned decision. Di Carli had a great swim at Trials in 2011, but bombed and didn’t make it out of prelims in Shanghai. If he can go a 48-low or 47-high in London, he should at least final.