Irish swimmer Chris Bryan will attempt to qualify for Olympics
IRELAND'S Chris Bryan will have his only opportunity to qualify for the Olympic Games tomorrow as he takes to the water in Portugal for the Marathon Swimming Olympic Qualification event.
There are 71 male athletes from 43 countries entered into the 10 kilometre event at Sado Bay, Setubal.
Twelve swimmers have already qualified for marathon swimming at the Games through placings at the World Championships in Kazan in 2015.
There are a further 14 places available this weekend with only one swimmer per country eligible to secure a place at the Rio Games. The top nine swimmers (one from each country) will qualify directly with a further five places distributed across the continents.
“It’s an exciting time and of course a nerve-racking one,” commented Bryan from Portugal this week.
“Open water racing can be so unpredictable, but I like to focus on what I know and what I know is simple; I’ve the work done and I have the beating of anyone, so now it’s time to go and make my statement.”
Bryan’s race takes place at 4pm tomorrow and the 10K swim can normally take from between one hour 45 minutes to two hours depending on water and weather conditions. The course of 1.66 kilometres will be completed six times by the swimmers.
Irish Olympic qualifiers in the pool Fiona Doyle, Nicholas Quinn and Shane Ryan are also in action this weekend. The trio, who are currently at a training camp in Barcelona, will compete at the Mare Nostrum Meet in Barcelona, where a number of countries are continuing their preparations for Rio.