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Steffen Sets Up Olympic Defence No 2

May 13, 2012  - Craig Lord

As several more added their name to the German London 2012 team on day 4 of trials in Berlin, Britta Steffen set up the defence of her second Olympic crown with a 24.92 victory in the 50m freestyle. 

The silver went to Daniel Schreiber in 25.30, bronze to Dorothea Brandt in 25.45. Steffen, of Berlin Neukoelln, thus heads to London as a defending champion in two sprint freestyle events and the world record holder in both the 50k and 100m, though the times on the clock from 2009 (23.73 and 52.07) are unlikely to be repeated in 2012, the best in the world so far this year efforts of 24.10 and 52.75 from Ranomi Kromowidjojo (NED).

In other finals:

Men's 100m freestyle

Christoph Fildebrandt, of Wuppertal, got the touch in a blanket finish, his 48.84 victory 0.02sec shy of the FINA A standard for London 2012 but the first of four sub-49sec efforts.

Markus Deibler, on 48.88, Benjamin Starke, on 48.97, and Paul Biedermann, on 48.98, had already made the German Olympic team in solo events but today added the 4x100m free relay to their schedule come July in the British capital.

Next in line for the relay was national record holder Marco Di Carli, on 48.24 a year ago heading into Shanghai 2011 world titles, but precisely a second slower today, while Dimitri Colupaev, on 49.34, was 6th man home.

Women's 100m backstroke

Jenny Mensing, of Wiesbaden, clocked 59.85, to add the 100m crown to the 200m title she won in German record time yesterday. The silver went to Silke Lippok in1:01.89, bronze to Johanna Roas in 1:02.55.

Men's 100m backstroke

Jan-Philip Glania, the in-form Frankfurt backstroke ace who took an axe to the German 200m record yesterday, added the 100m title to his tally in a best time of 53.50, 0.53sec ahead of national record holder Helge Meeuw, both men inside the London 2012 cut. The bronze went to Felix Wolf in 55.25.

Women's 100m breaststroke

The top twoi both booked tickets to London 2012, Carline Rhunau, of Essen, on 1:07.28, Sarah Poewe, of Wuppertal, on 1:07.90. The bronze went to Laura Simon in 1:09.55, the first of three just inside 1:10, including 14-year-old Margarethe Hummel, on 1:09.84. One to watch for.

Men's 100m breaststroke

Germany may have two reserves for its medley relay when it comes to breaststroke, a 1:00.89 victory for Christian Vom Lehn, of Wuppertal, a fingernail up on joint second place for Johannes Neumann and MarcoKoch, both inside London 2012 cut on 1:00.92.

Women's 200m butterfly

There were no FINA A qualifiers but Franziska Hentke, of Magdeburg, took the crown in 2:09.32, ahead of national record holder from Rome 2009, Annika Melhorn (2:06.45), on 2:11.75 for silver, and Paula Beyer, on 2:13.97.

Men's 200m butterfly

As in the women's race, there were no FINA A cut times, the crown going to Toni Emcaher, of Halle, in 1:58.53, 0.45sec ahead of Philip Heintz, with Simnon Becker this in 2:00.05.

Women's 200m medley

Theresa Michalak, of Halle, got inside the London 2012 cut with a 2:12.49 victory well up on Alexandra Wenk, on 2:14.62, and Katharina Fischer, on 2:16.79. Michalak stepped up from a previous best of 2:13.32. The German record remains the 2:11.73 at which East Germany's Ute Geweniger held the world record in 1981 at a time when Oral Turinabol was the diet of champions from the GDR. despite that knowledge, well documented in Stasi files, the DSV, Germany's swim federation, adopted all the GDR's records. Those standards did not serve as an incentive for German women to raise their game in the intervening years. Something perhaps to consider for those who think shiny suit times serve as an incentive for everyone these days, despite the fact that many world marks will stay in place this summer and for some to come yet.

German trials conclude tomorrow.