On the heels of British Swimming announcing a revised qualification time period for its British Summer Championships meet in July, the organization also revealed its new policy for 2020 Olympic Games qualification.
Yesterday, British Swimming made the formal announcement that its Olympics-qualifying meet, the British Swimming Championships originally slated for April 14th – April 19th at London Aquatics Centre, had been officially cancelled. At the time they stated that the selection policies would be reviewed by British Swimming’s World Class Performance Leadership Group pertaining to the Olympic Games pool and open water swimming, European Championships, Europan Junior Championships and FINA World Junior Open Water Championships.
British Swimming revealed today it is working with the British Olympic Association (BOA) on a new policy to published within a week but in the meantime has shared an early view of the key principles that will appear in the new version.
A major point is the fact that it is a 2-phase qualification process now, instead of just one Trials meet. The first phase will include pre-selection nomination of athletes based on their performances at the 2019 World Championships in Gwangju. These athletes will be nominated for selection to the BOA at the same time of the publishing of the new policy.
Additionally, a second phase of nomination for selection for the 2020 Olympic Games will be based on performances during the FINA qualification window of March 1st, 2019 to June 29th, 2020. Our intention, therefore, is to allow more athletes the opportunity to post a FINA A time or better by extending the ‘consideration time’ period until the end of June 2020, reads the statement.
But, a question certainly follows as to whether or not there will still be swimming meets available through May and June. Right now, there are, to the tune of the following:
*Note, several of these are CLOSED Trials, meaning no foreign athletes allowed
- Australian Olympic Trials still on schedule for June 14-19
- Belarusian Nationals still on schedule for May 22-24
- Belgian Open Nationals still on schedule for May 21-23
- Greek Olympic Trials still on schedule for May 28-31
- South African National Championships still on schedule for April 4-9
- Swedish Championships still on schedule for June 26-30
- United State Olympic Trials still on schedule for June 21-28
- Brazilian Trials now rescheduled for June 22-27
- Chinese Nationals – NEW Dates of May 10-16
- French Elite National Championships – NEW Dates of June 23-29
- Irish Open Championships – Moved to JUNE (exact dates TBD)
- New Zealand has postponed their Olympic Trials, likely until June.
As a refresher, here is our post with the roster of British swimmers who participated in the 2019 World Championships. As a nation, GBR finished 7th in the overall medal table in Gwangju, with the following medals earned:
- Duncan Scott, 200m freestyle bronze
- Luke Greenbank, 200m backstroke bronze
- Adam Peaty, 50m and 100m breaststroke gold
- James Wilby, 100m breaststroke silver
- Greenbank/Peaty/James Guy/Scott/Wilby (prelims) men’s 4x100m medley relay gold
- Georgia Davies/Peaty/Guy/Freya Anderson/Wilby (prelims) mixed medley bronze
British Swimming also states that the due to the uncertainty surrounding the staging of the 2020 European Championships and the potential extension of the qualifying period until the end of June 2020, they will not be in a position to qualify any additional relays for Tokyo 2020 other than the five relays that have pre-qualified at this time.
The relays that have qualified for GBR for Tokyo include the men’s medley, women’s medley, mixed medley, men’s 4x100m free relay and men’s 4x200m free relay.
The new policy will only apply if the 2020 Olympic Games is held on the existing dates 25th July to 2nd August 2020. If there is any postponement of the 2020 Olympic Games beyond this period, a new selection policy will be required.
In terms of the 2020 European Championships (Pool) selection policy, this remains under review due to the uncertainty surrounding this event. A further advisory on this policy will be published on the 30th March 2020.