Germany’s Lucas Matzerath Breaks 1:00 in 100 Breaststroke in Germany

Over the weekend in Germany, multiple pools hosted swims that were faster than the German Olympic qualifying standards. The German Olympic qualifying period begins in April, so these swimmers will have to repeat these times during that period in order to officially qualify.

In Würzburg, Lucas Matzerath was one of  a few swimmers to crack an Olympic qualifying standard after he posted a 59.75 in the 100 meter breast (LCM.) This was 20-year-old Matzerath’s first time under 1 minute in the event and he snuck under the qualifying standard by .05.

Matzerath has been one of the top breaststrokers in his age range since 2018 when he won the 200 meter breast at the German National Junior Championships by nearly 5 seconds. At the same meet, he won the 100 breast with a time of 1:02.66.

His best time in the 100 breaststroke coming into the meet was 1:01.08.

Earlier this year, during Germany’s first qualifying period, Marco Koch became the first German swimmer to achieve a 2020 Tokyo Olympic qualifying standard. This was before he broke multiple League records and posted the 5th fastest all-time 200 breaststroke in history during the International Swimming League season.

FINA ‘A’ Olympic Qualifying Times and German Olympic Qualifying Times

OQT/A DSV Olympic Standard 400m freestyle DSV Olympic Standard OQT/A
0: 24.77 0: 24.75 50m freestyle 0: 21.95 0: 22.01
0: 54.38 0: 54.10 100m freestyle 0: 48.50 0: 48.57
1: 57.28 1: 57.20 200m freestyle 1: 46.70 1: 47.02
4: 07.90 4: 07,50 400m freestyle 3: 46,40 3: 46.78
8: 33.36 8: 30,00 800m freestyle 7: 50,30 7: 54.31
16: 32.04 16: 16.00 1500m freestyle 14: 59.00 15: 00.99
1: 07.07 1: 07.00 100m breast 0: 59.80 0: 59.93
2: 25.52 2: 24.90 200m breast 2: 09.90 2: 10.35
1: 00.25 1: 00.00 100m back 0: 53.70 0: 53.85
2: 10.39 2: 09.50 200m back 1: 57.00 1: 57.50
0: 57.92 0: 57.90 100m butterfly 0: 51.80 0: 51.96
2: 08.43 2: 08.20 200m butterfly 1: 56.30 1: 56.48
2: 12.56 2: 11.90 200m IM 1: 59.40 1: 59.67
4: 38.53 4: 38.40 400m IM 4: 15.00 4: 15.84

At the same training center, Ole Braunschweig cracked the Olympic qualifying time in the 100 meter back twice on Saturday. In prelims he posted a 53.70, followed by a 53.66 in finals.

Recently engaged German distance duo Florian Wellbrock and Sarah Köhler competed in Magdeburg. Wellbrock clocked a 3:47.46 in the 400 meter free alongside a 14:58.64 in his 1500 free. Köhler posted a  solid 16:03.43 in her 1500 free.

Both swimmers medaled in the 1500 free at the 2019 World Championships in Gwanju where Wellbrock won gold for the men and Köhler won silver for the women. They are set to represent Germany again at the Tokyo Games. 

15-year-old Moritz Hesse took down a 32-year-old record in the 200 meter back by posting a time of 2:03.60. Hesse crushed the previous age group record, set by Lars Kalenka,  by 2.3 seconds and she was well under the Olympic qualifying standard.

“These are strong signs and prove that we manage to keep the right focus even in these difficult times,” German national coach Hannes Vitense expressed. “And many others have shown with their performances that they are on the right track with regard to the Olympics [translated.]”

Multiple other swimmers closed in on the German Olympic qualifying standards including Anna Elendt who swam the 100 meter breast on Saturday with a time of 1:07.59, only 9 hundredths of a second off her best time which won the U.S. Open in November. Her time was within 1 second of the Olympic qualifying standard. 

Elendt, a freshman at Texas University, is a dominant breaststroker in the NCAA. She currently holds the fastest 200 yard breast in the NCAA this season, only recently challenged by Virginia’s Kate Douglass who swam an unofficial 2:04.64 during an intrasquad.

At SG Neukölln, Leonie Kullmann posted a lifetime best of 4:08.07 in the 400 free, about half a second away from the German Olympic qualifying standard.  

 At the same pool, Lisa Graf dominated her signature event, the 200 meter back, with a time of 2:12.32. This was not a particularly fast time for Graf, who posted a 2:07.63 at the German National Championships in 2017. Her 2:07 is still one of the fastest German 200 backstrokes since the 2016 Olympics.

Jeanette Spiwoks contested the 1500 meter free, posting a time of 16:26.54 which is within 11 seconds of the Olympic qualifying standard. She is already a part of the German swimming federation (DSV) open water roster for the 2020 European Championships. Spiwoks is the only swimmer on the roster who is contesting all 3 distances: the 5K, 10K, and 25K.

In Hannover, Angelina Köhler swam a 100 meter fly with a time of 58.50. This is also not a personal best time for Köhler after she posted a 57.87 last year.

 Artem Selin took down the men’s 50 meter free with a time of 22.33. He won this event at the 2019 European Junior Championships with a time of 22.18 which set a new German Age Record for the 17-year-old.  All swimmers mentioned so far have now met the qualifying standards for the European Championships next May.

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2 years ago

It’s good to see a nation impose qualifying times that are close to the Olympic qualifying standard and are therefore realistic.

2 years ago

Some insane times (from a german perspective). I hope that they will be reproduced at a “real” meet, but i have serious doubts. Those improvements seem too good to be true. It would be amazing if Germany could maybe have a similar development as Italy (on a lower level of course). I guess after 0 medals combined at the last 2 olympics, it can’t get any worse anyways …

Matzerath went from 1:01.08 to 59.75? Crazy improvement and nice to finally seem some promising talent in this event.
Braunschweig also completely crushed his PB, him and Matzerath could help the german medley relay to maybe sneak into the final in Tokyo (alongside Kusch and maybe Wierling).
Also a… Read more »

About Annika Johnson

Annika Johnson

Annika came into the sport competitively at age eight, following in the footsteps of her twin sister and older brother. The sibling rivalry was further fueled when all three began focusing on distance freestyle, forcing the family to buy two lap counters. Annika is a three-time Futures finalist in the 200 …

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