DrThe melody of speech tells where Anna Ellendt now lives. Last summer, the swimmer moved from her home in Hesse to the University of Austin in Texas, USA. In a system, she says she herself, athletes carry “a silver plate.” The 19-year-old is already making an audible impact on America. Now the student is back in Germany for a week to do what she loves: “Fight me”.
On Friday (from 10 am), the breast specialist starting at SG Frankfurt will jump into the pool at the Olympic qualifiers in Berlin. The looseness that characterized the young woman from Dreieich-Götzenhain as an early competitive type combined with increased self-confidence. A ticket to Tokyo, which was little more than a sweet dream a year ago, seems achievable. For one start in Japan, the German record over 100 meters on the chest must drop by 1: 07.01 minutes in the previous or final round. Anna Ellendt, whose best score was 1: 07.50, dares to do so, as well as in the alternate showdown for a relay place against the competition in the final with her hands first on stopping.
Of course, “everything has to fit” with this. It would be inappropriate to put pressure on yourself. If the trip to Asia does not work out, the former DSW athlete Darmstadt will likely go to the European Championships in Budapest in May. With the exception of medal contenders such as club teammate and former world champion Marco Koch, the Olympic nominees for the German Swimming Association (DFB) are not supposed to start there.
Anna Elendt already has experience with major international events. As the two-time German champion at the 2019 World Title competitions in the South Korean city of Gwangju, he surprised the 50-meter-high debutant in the chest by reaching the finals and seventh. A few months later, at the World Cup in Berlin, her portrait was engraved on all the credits. The new face of DSV responded to the “strange” situation with the victory of the first series.
Close to the 2021 matches, the talent, which his former coach Alexander Kreisel assured she has greater potential, did not see until November. At the US Open, Anna Ellendt improved her best time by over 100 meters by more than half a second. “I didn’t think the changes would take effect so quickly,” she says. The scholarship holder enjoys ideal conditions in her certified sports home: from the dormitory on campus, where she shares a room with a swimming colleague, which is only a four-minute walk from the pool or weight room. Athletes have their own cafeteria with “really good and healthy food”. Thanks to extensive medical care, Anna Ellendt has knee problems under control.
20 swimmers all enjoy the same motivation, plus the sun in the sky and the music at the edge of the pool – Anna Ellendt pays that 100 percent off each training session. In terms of technology, there was a surprise to the newcomer. “I always thought my bra style was okay,” she says. On site, her coach Carol Capitani, who once trained Rebecca Sonny for Olympic victories, transmitted a different rhythm of arm pulls and leg kicks. “Before, I was doing both moves almost simultaneously.” By separating the two from each other, they could be “faster with less effort” Anna Ellendt also worked on diving and cornering training. The changes that were necessary to make the fast-growing athlete, which celebrated its greatest success to date on a non-Olympic 50m box, stronger over twice the long distance. “I have to slide more than 100 meters,” she says.
At university, where a high school graduate initially only took compulsory courses about American history and the political system in online lessons, teachers provide individualized support. She had a lot of respect for that before writing an essay in English. “I thought all of this might be too much for me.” But every area is professionally managed. Dealing with the Coronavirus, too. Body temperature is measured automatically at all entrances to buildings and the face is checked for a mask. Swimmers are tested once a week and make up their own bladders.
Anna Ellendt has already had her first vaccination. “It would have been the second now.” She had to postpone it. On Sunday, she arrived home to prepare for the decisive moments in Berlin with the national coach Sheila Sheth, who is in constant close contact with the coaching team in the United States. Ellendt will return on Monday – with or without an Olympic ticket.