No Room For German Male Medley Quartet In Beijing
May 5, 2008
Craig Lord

Germany will not send a men's 4x100m medley relay to Beijing, head coach Orjan Madsen revealed tonight at a team-building seminar with 13 home coaches and Olympic staff coaches and athletes in Potsdam.

The decision - taken on the basis that there is not enough scope between now and the Games for a team to step up to qualification standard and go on to make a difference without affecting individual preparations - means the end of any hope Johannes Neumann (SC Riesa) had of racing in China this summer, his 100m breaststroke win at trials shy of the mark he needed for an individual berth.

Madsen also noted that the fate of Rafed El-Masri (SG Neukölln), a German-born Syrian who has competed for Syria in the past but wants to (and has qualified to) race for Germany, is still in the hands of FINA granting permission for a switch of nation in time for Beijing.

The head coach invited 13 home coaches to attend the Potsdam gathering, while naming the five who will join him at the Games: Eva Herbst (Leutzsch), Norbert Warnatzsch (Berlin), Frank Embacher (Halle-Saale), Frank Lamodke (Hannover) und Dr. Jörg Bügner (Frankfurt).

The German squad will test itself together as a team twice before heading to Beijing: at the Monte Carlo leg of the Mare Nostrum Tour (indoors), June 7-8, and after a final training camp in Berlin at a meet in Magdeburg from 18 to 20 July. The Berlin camp, from 16 to 28 June is available for those who do not wish to attend an altitude camp from June 8 to 29.

Madsen's team will base themselves in Kumamoto in Japan from July 25 to August 5 before heading to the Battle of Beijing.