FINA Revises Rio Relay Qualification Criteria; JPN Medley Now In

Per the relay qualification protocol outlined in FINA’s overall 2016 Olympic Games Qualification Standards, the first 12 placed teams in each relay event at this summer’s FINA World Championships in Kazan automatically qualified for the relay events in Rio.

Additionally, as each relay event has a maximum of 16 qualified teams actually competing in the Olympics, the remaining 4 teams per relay event will be the teams with the fastest times in FINA World Rankings during the approved qualification period of March 1, 2015 to May 31, 2016, per FINA’s standards.

As such, the members of Japan’s 4×100 medley relay (women) were heavily disappointed in Kazan when, after having qualified 8th in prelims with a time of 4:00.43, the foursome of Sayaka Akase, Kanako Watanabe, Natsumi Hoshi, and Miki Uchida were disqualified in the finals. The DQ stemmed from breaststroker Watanabe leaving the block early upon Akase’s finish of her leg, with Watanabe clocking a -.08 reaction time.

But, news is breaking that FINA has revised its original regulation, now stating that the Olympic berths would go to the top 12 teams from the qualifying heats at World Championships, thus notifying Japan its women’s relay is now an entrant in Rio.

According to The Japan Times, the Japanese Swimming Federation was notified by FINA just today that its disqualified relay is indeed now part of the initial group of 12 set to compete in Rio. The revised decision now renders all 6 of Japan’s relays able to compete in Rio.

FINA is reportedly contacting the other national swimming federations concerning the revision, meaning that the Finnish team will be getting a phone call concerning their status. In prelims, Finland’s squad finished in 13th place, which, with JPN’s DQ, moved the into 12th and thus qualified. With Japan’s reinstatement into the mix, Finland finds itself back in 13th place and out of the automatic qualification by just .17 of a second.

USA Swimming confirms all 6 of its relays have qualified for Rio.

In the FINA world rankings as they stand right now, the teams in 13th – 16th in each relay are as follows:

Women’s 4x100m Medley Relay

13th – Finland
14th – Brazil
15th – Czech Republic
16th – Spain

Women’s 4x100m Freestyle Relay

13th – Germany
14th – Hong Kong
15th – Switzerland
16th – Austria

Women’s 4x200m Freestyle Relay

13th – the Netherlands
14th – Austria
15th – Hong Kong
16th – Spain

Men’s 4x100m Medley Relay

13th – Lithuania
14th – Greece
15th – Belarus
16th – New Zealand

Men’s 4x100m Freestyle Relay

13th – Australia
14th – Greece
15th – Argentina
16th – Turkey

Men’s 4x200m Freestyle Relay

13th – Denmark
14th – Italy
15th – China
16th – Canada

Any shake-ups in these world rankings from teams further down the list in any of these relays could potentially put an Olympic bid at risk for one of those ranked nations.

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Carlos oliveira

In fact there were 2 disqualified relays in Kazan…am I wrong?


Denmark was 12th in the mens 4x200m freestyle relay.


Men 4×200 relay is wrong..

First, Denmark was 12th at Worlds.. so they are already qualified

Also, The times are valid since march 1, 2015.

Brazil went 7:11:15 at Pan American, so he is the fastest without counting the top 12 of Worlds
After them would be Italy, China and Canada..

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