Just after announcing that its would-be Rio roster will be venturing to Bermuda this January for a ‘Rio acclimation’ camp of sorts, the Danish Swimming Federation has announced what names will actually be appearing on its 2016 Olympic roster.
Just unveiled today is the group of five familiar swimmers who will comprise the Danish Olympic team in Rio. Jeanette Ottesen, Lotte Friis, Rikke Moller Pedersen, Mie Nielsen and Viktor Bromer are the 5 elite athletes selected by the Danish Athletics Association (DFI) in cooperation with the national swimming association Dansk Svømmeunion.
Says Sporting Director of Dansk Svømmeunion, Lars Green Bach, “All five swimmers are among the elite and have delivered results at the European Championships and World Championships over the past year. We know that the Olympic Games always offer close races, but we also know that the swimmers have the potential to make an impact in the finals.”
Winning a medal of any color would be an improvement for the Danish team from their 2012 performance in London which rendered the squad hardware-less. Distance freestyle specialist Friis finished as high as 4th in the women’s 400m freestyle behind medalists, the late Camille Muffat, Allison Schmitt and now-retired Rebecca Adlington. Pedersen also came away with a 4th place finish in her race, the 200m breaststroke, an event in which she currently holds 2015’s 3rd-fastest time.
Ottesen has been swimming impressively throughout 2015 and currently ranks 2nd in the world in her signature event, the 100m butterfly, winning silver at this year’s World Championships. Bromer will be competing in his first Olympics, but has established himself as a contender in the men’s 200m butterfly, holding the 7th-fastest time in the world. Bromer finished 5th in the event in Kazan.
As for Friis, she has proven the talent is there, but will need to step things up a notch in order to place on the podium come Rio. In Kazan she found herself in 4th place in the 1500m and 5th place in the 800m freestyle races. Minus Adlington, the women’s distance freestyle field is largely in tact, meaning Friis will most likely be battling familiar foes including World Record Holder, American Katie Ledecky, Great Britain’s Jaz Carlin, New Zealand’s Lauren Boyle, as well an up-and-comer in young Jessica Ashwood from Australia.
Although the Danish news is reporting that Team Denmark still has a few more selections to make, including its relay teams, we can already note differences from 2012’s line-up. Swimmers that competed in London that are currently not on Denmark’s list for Rio include Wendy Blume, Mads Glaesner, Mathias Gydesen, Daniel Skaaning, Anders Lie and Pál Joensen.