FINA and the IOC had already released the qualifying procedures for the 2016 Summer Olympic Games for 4 out of 5 of the aquatic disciplines.
The IOC will again use the same A/B/Universality process that they used in the 2012 Olympics, but with a small but very significant tweak.
1.Any swimmer, up to two per event per country, who hit the FINA “A” standard can go to the Olympics, in the first priority.
2. The next priority will be athletes in relays, where the first 12 from the 2015 World Championships will go, and the remaining 4 spots in each event will go to the next-best 4 teams in the qualification period in approved qualifying events.
3. Up next will be the Universality places, where countries who have no swimmers with an “A” time or a selected “B” time may enter up to 1 man and 1 woman for Rio, presuming that man and woman competed at the 2015 World Championships. Each can swim in just 1 individual event. If a country has a male swimmer invited, they can invite 1 female swimmer under the Universality rules, and vice-versa.
4. Up to the cap of 900 swimmers (the same as London), FINA will begin inviting swimmers with “B” times. By July 5th, 2016, FINA will inform “B” standard swimmers of their invites (up to 1 “B” swimmer per country). The change, and this is significant, is that FINA may continue to invite swimmers with “B” standards above the 900 quota to ensure that every country represented at the 2015 World Championships will have an (eligible) swimmer at the Olympics.
Qualifying standards will be approved by the FINA Bureau in December 2014 at their meeting in Doha, Qatar, and should be announced then.
The full qualifying document can be seen here.
To read about qualifying for the other four disciplines, click here.