15-Yr-Old Benedetta Pilato Qualifies For 2020 Tokyo Olympic Games

2020 ITALIAN OPEN CHAMPIONSHIPS

Right on the heels of Thomas Ceccon‘s new national record in the 100m backstroke, teenager Benedetta Pilato fired off a new national record in the women’s 100m breast.

Competing in the timed finals of the 2020 Italian Championships in Riccione, 15-year-old Pilato produced a massive 100m breast time of 1:06.02. Splitting 30.64/35.38, Pilato beat out the next closest competitor of Martina Carraro en route to the top of ht podium. Carraro hit a mark of 1:06.58 while Arianna Castiglioni rounded out the top 3 in 1:07.01.

Remarkably, Pilato’s previous personal best entering this competition rested at the 1:07.06 she logged in Casarano this past July. As such, the teen hacked more than a solid second off of the fastest time she had ever produced en route to taking over the previous Italian senior record 1:06.36 Carraro put on the books at the 2019 FINA World Championships for bronze.

Pilato’s historic time here also qualifies the 15-year-old for the Olympic Games, dipping under the Italian Swimming Federation’s (Federnuoto) mandated minimum qualification mark of 1:06.4 needed for the 2020 Olympic Games.

As quick as Pilato was today in Riccione, she still has a ways to go to get into the realm of retired Olympic champion Ruta Meilutyte’s World Junior Record of 1:05.21 from 2014.

Pilato already owned Italy’s fastest 50m breaststroke performance of all-time clocking a new national record of 29.98 in the heats of the event at last year’s World Championships. She wound up taking silver in a final time of 30.00.

Pilato has since taken the 50m breast down to 29.85 at this year’s Sette Colli Trophy.

Italian Qualifying Times for 2020 Olympic Games

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Misha Fan
1 year ago

Those qualifying standards are absurd. Interested to see how many Italians actually will go to the Olympics.

Emanuele
Reply to  Misha Fan
1 year ago

There are already 11 qualified so…
Plus athletes like detti, miressi, carraro, megli, scozzoli, pellegrini still have to qualified.

Luigi
1 year ago

The reasoning behind the stiff qualifying times is that they don’t want to send overseas swimmers who do not have a chance to enter finals. But these standards aren’t carved in stone. There is another qualifying meet in 2021 with easier marks, and there is also room for discretion on the part of the coaches.

xman
Reply to  Luigi
1 year ago

Basically this the times are designed so everyone on the team can get in the top 8.

swimfan_00
Reply to  Luigi
1 year ago

As I said Flo Manaudou was 21.9 at french trials in 2012 but was crowned Olympic champion at the london games. Setting stiff qualifying times comparing to FINA A CUT is just nonsense

Anonymous
1 year ago

Anyone else feel like Pilato has been 15 for two or three years?

Congrats to her!

Ell.eff
Reply to  Anonymous
1 year ago

It’s worse! I feel she’s like 20 years old and she’s been around for ages!

Sometimes I have to remember myself that she already achieved a lot of things at such a young age…

She was 13 the first time she won a medal at Italian Championship (silver in December 2018).

She was 14 when she won bronze medal at Worlds in Gwangju (july 2019). At 14 she became the first italian ever who was able to swim 50breast in less than 30 seconds. At 14 she became the youngest italian ever in a national team roster for World Championship (Federica Pellegrini was 15 when she raced in the 400 free relay heats at 2003 Worlds).

At 15 she is… Read more »

Corn Pop
Reply to  Ell.eff
1 year ago

There have been 14 & 15 year old w omens Olympic champs for decades. 92 96 2000 ( gold & silver) .2012 . It was a hard road for all of them but maybe e the Japan girl getting death threats tops them.all.

Pacific Whirl
Reply to  Ell.eff
1 year ago

Federica was 14 in 03 Worlds

swimfan_00
1 year ago

Flo Manaudou and Nathan Adrian at there respective olympic trials in 2012 were above these italian qualifying times (21.9 and 48.1). It is nonsense, what is this trend of setting insane OQT for some countries? Wanting swimmers to peak at the trials?

Snarky
Reply to  swimfan_00
1 year ago

Control by old men who make political decisions on who goes. The athletes need to take a stand.

Dan
Reply to  swimfan_00
1 year ago

Sometimes the restrictions are set by the NOC (National Olympic Committee – SOC = Swedish Olympic Committee). For the 2012 Olympics the Swedish NOC said that an athlete had to have reasonable chance for a top finish at the Olympics to be selected. There were athletes that won qualifying events or had a top 12/16 world ranking before the Olympic games but were not selected.
Sweden who has a few good swimmers but not an abundance had Simon Sjodin who in 2012 was under the FINA A cut several times and was ranked Top 20 in the world at the time but the Swedish NOC (SOC) did not select him (he was nominated by the Swedish Swimming Federation).
… Read more »

Dan
Reply to  Dan
1 year ago

Simon came back the following year (2013 World Champs) and was 4th in the prelims of the 200 IM (in the final he was slower and finished 8th).

Last edited 1 year ago by Dan
gkjhdslks
1 year ago

An interesting note – rana means frog in Italian (frog kick) for breastroke. Also those are some fast qualifying times!

Togger
1 year ago

Out of interest, how do the Olympics handle having under 16/18s there? Do they stay in the village, can their parents accompany them etc?

It’s pretty common in quite a few sports to have kids qualify, but plenty of articles suggest things can get pretty wild in the village after athletes finish competing and not sure I’d want my 15 year old there for that!

Last edited 1 year ago by Togger
Xman
Reply to  Togger
1 year ago

According the biographies of American Olympians they go home as soon as swimming is over.

Although some girls took a 14 year old Amanda Beard to a dive bar outside of the village.

Joe
Reply to  Togger
1 year ago

Think I remember reading that MP came back to the USA straight after the end of the swimming in 2000.

Pretty sure the village is for athletes/authorised staff only. MP roomed with a teenage Piersol I think at those games.

Snarky
Reply to  Togger
1 year ago

They all stay in the village.

Corn Pop
Reply to  Togger
1 year ago

They would be safer in the Village than.what USAG exposed their girls to in hotel rooms.

Snarky
1 year ago

Hell, will time requirements like those the Italian team might be smaller than the Brit team.

Swimmer
Reply to  Snarky
1 year ago

The British team will have everyone they want on it… plenty of discretion in there!!

SAMUEL HUNTINGTON
Reply to  Snarky
1 year ago

oh my gosh, even the USA would potentially struggle with some of these, like 59.0 in men’s 100 breast first comes to mind but other events like men’s 50, 1500, men’s 200 fly, women’s 200 free, women’s 400 IM

Snarky
Reply to  SAMUEL HUNTINGTON
1 year ago

Probably not. I am thinking that our trials are going to be sick (not in a COVID way) fast. Probably a 58 low and 58 mid coming. Dont worry about those other events. The US will be fine. My predicts: M 50 free (21.0/21.3), 1500 free (14:41/ 14:44), men’s 200 fly (1:53.3/ 1:54.3), women’s 200 free (1:54 low/ 1:55 low), 400 IM (4:31/ 4:33)

SAMUEL HUNTINGTON
Reply to  Snarky
1 year ago

Optimistic about the male breaststrokers I see! I don’t see that happening though.

Curious who you think will go 1:54.3 in fly, I can’t think of anyone.

IM FAN
Reply to  SAMUEL HUNTINGTON
1 year ago

Luca Urlando. He dislocated his shoulder and has missed the 2020 season because of it, so COVID actually ended up being a sort of blessing for him. He’ll likely be fully recovered for trials.

Last edited 1 year ago by IM FAN
SAMUEL HUNTINGTON
Reply to  IM FAN
1 year ago

Yea, Luca is going the 1:53.3. It’s the second place I’m wondering about.

PhillyMark
Reply to  SAMUEL HUNTINGTON
1 year ago

Remel

SAMUEL HUNTINGTON
1 year ago

going out in 30.64, wow

About Retta Race

Retta Race

Former Masters swimmer and coach Loretta (Retta) thrives on a non-stop but productive schedule. Nowadays, that includes having just earned her MBA while working full-time in IT while owning French 75 Boutique while also providing swimming insight for BBC.

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