Following their major successes in 2017 and 2018, Brazil will be hosting a pair of training camps for their men’s 4×100 and 4×200 free relays as they hone in on those two events heading into the 2020 Olympic Games in Tokyo.
Identified as a strategic focus by the CBDA (Brazil’s Confederation of Water Sports), and with support of the COB (Brazilian Olympic Committee), a camp consisting of the top-8 ranked men in the 100 free nationally from 2018 (long course metres) will take place at the Maria Lenk pool in Rio de Janeiro from January 22-26. The swimmers and their coaches will have three days to train together.
Based on the 2018 rankings, the invited swimmers are:
- Pedro Spajari, 47.95
- Gabriel Santos, 47.98
- Marcelo Chierighini, 48.36
- Marcos Antonio Ferreira Junior, 48.46
- Bruno Fratus, 48.51
- Breno Correia, 48.78
- Joao de Lucca, 49.05
- Cesar Cielo*, 49.29
*currently pondering retirement, whether or not Cielo will be in attendance is up in the air. Andre Luiz Calvelo de Souza would be next in line (49.47).
The swimmers ranked 9th-20th are also welcome to participate in the camp, but will be responsible for their travel, accommodations and meals.
This relay has found Brazil plenty of success over the last few years on the international stage. After swimming in the final of the event at home at the 2016 Olympics, the team of Santos, Chierighini, Cielo and Fratus won silver at the 2017 World Championships behind the United States in a South American Record time of 3:10.34.
Then this past summer, Santos, Chierighini, Ferreira Junior and Spajari combined to win gold at the Pan Pacific Championships in 3:12.02. The team had initially touched 2nd to the U.S. (0.28 back, which is actually the exact same margin they had finished behind them in Budapest), but the Americans ended up being disqualified for swimming the wrong order.
This relay also won bronze a few weeks ago at the Short Course World Championships in Hangzhou, which is also where they had a breakout performance in the 4×200 free relay as they won gold and set a new world record in a time of 6:46.81.
That relay will also have a training camp that will occur in February with the same criteria. The eight swimmers expected to be there will be:
- Fernando Scheffer, 1:45.51
- Luiz Altamir Melo, 1:46.84
- Breno Correia, 1:47.94
- Joao de Lucca, 1:47.98
- Kaue Carvalho, 1:48.81
- Lucas Peixoto, 1:48.85
- Murilo Sartori, 1:48.91
- Giovanny Lima, 1:49.23
Shortly after competing at those Worlds, Scheffer set a new South American Record in this event in 1:45.51, ranking him 4th in the world for 2018. While this relay hasn’t seen the same success as the 4×100 in recent years (14th at the Rio Games, didn’t enter a team at 2017 Worlds), the quick emergence of swimmers like Scheffer, Melo and Correia give them high hopes for the future, and their performance at SC Worlds is obviously a sign things are on track.
The original article from Globo.com is available here.