The final world cups for the Olympic Qualifying season for Women’s Epee and Women’s Foil are going on this weekend. For the US team members, it will be the last world cup to earn points for qualifying for the US squad; for a number of teams this will mark the final chance to qualify a team for the Olympic Games.
In Women’s Epee, the top four nations are Romania, China, Italy, and Russia. They sit well above the four zonal qualifiers with Russia being over 10 points ahead of 5th place Korea.
The zonal spots for the top team in each zone are currently taken by Korea (Asia), Ukraine (Europe), the United States (Americas), and France (vacated African slot).
Because the top African nation, South Africa, is not in the top-16 in the FIE world rankings, they do not qualify and their slot would go to the next highest ranked team which is currently France.
What could change this weekend:
South Africa sits just 4 points out of a 16th place ranking, so it is possible that they could earn enough points to catch up with Great Britain at 16th and earn the African zonal qualification. If they don’t, then one of the European teams will grab it. The contenders are France (205 points), Estonia (202) and Hungary (198).
The top 4 in Women’s Foil are also fairly secure. Italy, of course, is well ahead of all comers in first place. They are followed by Russia, Korea and Poland. The zonal spots are currently owned by the United States (Americas), Hungary (Europe), Japan (Asia), and Egypt (Africa).
The European spot, however, is far from secure. Hungary sits at 216 points and both France (214) and Germany (205) are within striking distance. Egypt is currently ranked 16th by the FIE, so if they hold their place the Egyptian team would just qualify for the Olympics.
For those epee and foil athletes who do not qualify for the Games via the team selections, their results in the individual events on Saturday will earn them points for qualification for the individual events at the Olympics. Once the team event concludes, we’ll post our listing of the individuals that qualify for the Games.