Italian Championships Set for Wednesday as Swimmers Eye Olympic Qualification

ABSOLUTE ITALIAN CHAMPIONSHIPS (ITA)

The Absolute Italian Championships are set for this week in Riccione as the last major qualification meet for the Italian Olympic team. Day one begins on Wednesday with the first round of prelims.

The one wrinkle, Tokyo-wise, is that swimmers may be added to the team following the Sette Colli Trophy, which runs in June. Swimmers racing this week can also earn qualification for Italian rosters for the European Championships in May, the European Junior Championships in July and the World Junior Championships in August.

As a refresher, below are the athletes who have already been selected to the Olympic roster. Some have been selected based on their times in Olympic events during the 2019-20 season, while others were named based on their performances at the Italian Open Championships in December.

ITALIAN OLYMPIC ROSTER (SO FAR)

  1. Gregorio Paltrinieri
  2. Simona Quadarella
  3. Nicolo Martinenghi
  4. Margherita Panziera
  5. Martina Caramignoli
  6. Gabriele Detti
  7. Federica Pellegrini
  8. Marco De Tullio
  9. Federico Burdisso
  10. Benedetta Pilato
  11. Thomas Ceccon

START LISTS

There will be a host of names looking to join the Olympic roster with a strong meet this week, and the men’s sprints are a hotbed of talent. Alessandro Miressi, the Italian record-holder in the 100m free, is the top seed in the 50 free and 100 free. Veteran names like Luca Dotto and Federico Bocchia are seeded 2-3 in the 50 free, while younger sprint talents like Ivano VendrameGiovanni IzzoAndrea VerganiAlessandro Bori and Leonardo Deplano are all entered in the meet.

39-year-old Filippo Magnini is also racing this week after a three-year hiatus from the sport. He’ll be attending his fourth Olympics if he can qualify in his sole entry, the 100 free.

Out of the swimmers already qualified for Tokyo, highlights on the start lists include distance stars Gregorio PaltrinieriGabriele Detti and Federica Pellegrini, backstroker Margherita Panziera, breaststrokers Benedetta Pilato and Nicolo Martinenghi, butterflier Federico Burdisso and the versatile young sprinter Thomas Ceccon.

In the wake of Pilato’s rise in the international breaststroke ranks, things will get dicier for top breaststroke talents Martina Carraro and Arianna Castiglioni. Carraro is only entered in the 50 and 100 breast this weekend, while Castiglioni is swimming all three breaststroke distances, so Carraro will be banking on a big swim in the 100.

Ilaria Cusinato and Santo Condorelli are two more names to watch this week. Cusinato made headlines for joining Hungarian coach Shane Tusup‘s training group pre-COVID, but she left in late 2019 and is eyeing Olympic roster spots in the IM events and the 200 fly in Riccione. Condorelli has competed for Italy at several international meets since changing citizenship from Canada, and he’s hoping to join Team Italy in Tokyo this summer. He’s entered in the 50 free/100 free and 50 fly/100 fly this week.

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About Karl Ortegon

Karl Ortegon

Karl Ortegon studied sociology at Wesleyan University in Middletown, CT, graduating in May of 2018. He began swimming on a club team in first grade and swam four years for Wesleyan.

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