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Sutton wins open water test event, earns Olympic berth

By NBCOlympics.com
Posted Saturday, May 31, 2008

American Chloe Sutton, 16, qualified for the 10km open water swimming race at the Olympics when she won the test event in Beijing on Saturday.

Italy's Martina Grimaldi finished second in the race, held at the Shunyi Olympic Rowing-Canoeing Park. With each country allowed to qualify only one athlete, third-place finisher Alice Franco, also of Italy, failed to earn a spot.

Sutton, who led the race for most of the way, joins Mark Warkentin as the American representatives for the Olympic open water races.

Kirsten Groome of the U.S. finished 17th in her second bid to make it to the Olympics. Groome finished 21st in the initial qualifier earlier in May. It was Sutton's first attempt.

The 10k race will make its Olympic debut in August, with 25 swimmers each in the men's and women's races.

The rest of the 11 spots went to Marianna Lymperta of Greece, Naraliya Samorodina of Ukraine, Kristel Kobrich of Chile, Imelda Martinez of Mexico, Teja Zupan of Slovenia, Eva Berglund of Sweden, Antonella Bogarin of Argentina, Olga Beresneva of Israel and Daniela Inacio of Portugal.


 


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Olympic swimming features 32 pool events ranging from 50 to 1500 meters, contested over nine days, and the 10k open water race, which debuts in Beijing.

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