AS APPROVED at the Competition Committee Meeting -- October 3,  2007
All motions passed by the Competition Committee are recommendations to the PVS Board of Directors.

May 15, 2007 - 7:00 PM
Army Navy Country Club
Arlington, VA


Attendees:  Don Riedlinger, Chair; Janet Auger, PVS; John Ertter, PVS; Mark Faherty, PVS; Jim Garner, PVS; John Hirschmann, PVS; Dan Jacobs, PVS; Bill Marlin, PVS;  Bill Stephens, PVS; Ward Foley, AAC;  Evan Stiles, AAC; Denise Adams, ASA; Bob Walker, ASA; Tim Kelly, CUBU; Pete Morgan, CUBU; Manga Dalizu, FAST; Petra Martin, FBST; Mike Kraeuter, FISH; Bruce Andersen, HACC; Kerstin Severin, HACC; Christian Doud; MACH; Paris Jacobs, MACH; Heather Coulson Moore, MAKO; John Cyganiewicz, OCCS; Angela Cummings, PEAK; John Mason, PEAK; Victor Abrahamian, SDS; Peter Karl, SDS; Mike Pliuskaitis, SNOW; Jarod Schroeder, UMD; Greg York, YORK


Call to Order:  The meeting was called to order by Competition Committee Chairman, Don Riedlinger at 7:10 PM at Army Navy Country Club, Arlington, VA.


Agenda:  Don Riedlinger provided an agenda for use at the meeting. 


Approval of Minutes:  The minutes of the January 14, 2007 Competition Committee meeting were unanimously approved as submitted.  They had been posted on the website and copies were available at the meeting for review.


PVS Board action on items from Fall Competition Committee Meeting:  Riedlinger highlighted for Competition, two PVS Boards actions on recommendations made by the Competition Committee at its January 14, 2007 meeting (see Board Notes of January 17, 2007 for a complete listing of Board actions on Competition Committee recommendations):

  1. The recommendation that the Board strive to have an active Diversity Committee was approved and steps have been taken including the appointment to the committee of Art Lopez, Manga Dalizu, Rita Page and Miriam Lynch.  Soloman Robinson is still serving as Chairman.

  2. All club sanction requests were sanctioned.  (However as a recent development, Riedlinger informed the Committee that GMU/Fairfax is not available for Blizzard Invitational and MAKO was investigating the availability of GMU Freedom Center.  This may require some changes in the meet format be made.  No one present objected to a change in either venue or meet format, if required.)

Riedlinger reminded the Committee of its previous recommendation to create an objective selection criteria for PVS Athlete of the Year.  He informed those present that the proposal was being withdrawn due to its complexity in application and that, come Fall, nominations will again be solicited for able-bodied athletes in the same manner as they have been in the past.  As for swimmers with a disability, the previously proposed PVS Criteria for Swimmer with a Disability Award had been approved by the Board for implementation in the 2006-07 season.


Riedlinger's also reminded Competition that information on submitting a nomination for 2006-07 PVS Age Group Coach of the Year had been posted on the website and that nominations are due by May 30, 2007.


Election of 2007 PVS Eastern Zone Long Course Assistant Zone Coaches:  Bill Marlin informed the Committee that five nominations were received for these positions: James Gully (OCCS), Peter McDonough (PM), Nathan Meadows (TIBU), Yuri Suguiyama (CUBU), and Jenn Verser (MACH).  Noting the desire to have a total of six assistant zone coaches, Marlin asked for nominations from the floor.  Denise Adams (ASA) submitted her nomination.  In lieu of voting, the Committee agreed to declare all six elected by acclimation.  [Following the meeting, but prior to the PVS Board meeting of June 12th, Verser announced that she would be unable to serve and Shelley Gesker (YORK) announced her availability.]


Club Sanction Requests for the Period September 1, 2007 to December 31, 2007:  Competition was provided with a calendar indicating meets already approved and requests that have now been received for endorsement of sanction for additional club sponsored meets. Competition was previously informed that four meets (HACC Harvest Moon (October 13-14, 2007), FAST Qualifier (November 17-18, 2007), Blizzard Invitational Championship (November 30 - December 2, 2007) and Cassel's Winter Classic (December 13-16, 2007) had already been approved.  Auger identified the 18 meets for which a sanction was now being requested as:



Five meets were identified as not having been on the prior year's schedule and their formats were described as follows:

It was noted that the RMSC November Invitational is proposed for the same weekend as the PVS November Open; however, RMSC indicated that approximately two-thirds of its club would be attending the Open.  All other bids committed either with their bids or at the meeting to run the same meet this year as they had conducted last year.


In response to Riedlinger's request for questions or comments about the bids, it was noted that the MSSC All Freestyle Meet conflicted with the PVS Swimposium. HACC noted they had previously rescheduled its Harvest Moon meet so as to avoid this conflict in response to PVSs request that they do.  While both October 6-7, 2007 had been tentatively indicated as the dates for the Swimposium, Paris Jacobs informed the Committee that the date had been finalized as Saturday, October 6, 2007. 


A motion was made, seconded and unanimously carried to recommend to the Board that the MSSC All Freestyle Meet be sanctioned as a one-day meet on Sunday, October 7, 2007.


Upon reviewing the bids for the weekend of October 13-14, concern was expressed about potential staffing and equipment due to the large number of meets.  Stiles volunteered AAC's willingness to move the Fall Gator Mini Meet to the weekend of October 27-28, 2007.


A motion was made, seconded and unanimously carried to modify the dates of the AAC Fall Gator Mini Meet, accepting the remaining sixteen meets, as presented, to recommend to the Board for sanctioning.


Closing out discussion on meets for this period, Marlin informed the Committee of the renaming of PM's meet scheduled for December 14-17, 2007 from Cassel's Winter Classic to Sport Fair Winter Classic.  {Subsequent to the meeting, Marlin requested that the name of the meet be changed to Potomac Marlin's Winter Classic.]


Club Sanction Requests for the Period January 1, 2008 to March 31, 2008:  Auger informed the Committee that thirteen club meet bids had been received for this period:



Three meets were identified as not having been on the prior year's schedule and their formats were described as follows:

All other bids committed either with their bids or at the meeting to run the same meet this year as they had conducted last year.


Following Riedlinger's request for comments on the bids, Hirschmann reminded the Committee of PVS's policy of not permitting club meet bids on the dates of PVS hosted meets and pointed out that the PVS Distance meet had been previously scheduled for February 17-18, 2008.   In response to a question of clarification, PEAK confirmed that its "Right Weekend" Qualifier meet would not be offering any distance events.  Continuing the discussion of potential conflict with the PVS February Distance meet, several members of the Committee stated that, while they understood the policy of not scheduling club meets on the same weekends as PVS Open and Championship meets, they saw no conflict with meet scheduling with distance meets.


A motion was made, seconded to recommend to the Board that the thirteen meets be sanctioned.  Without further discussion, the motion carried unanimously.


Auger next informed the Committee that three meet bids had been received for the period of April to May 2008.  Of note was the fact that the March Madness meet was being renamed the Cherry Blossom Meet and scheduled for April 11-13, 2008.  The other meet bids received were Early Bird LC Invitational (MSSC -- May 3-4, 2008 -- Fairland) and Virginia LC State Championship (PM -- May 16-18, 2008 -- GMU).  Citing the recent revision to PVS Policy & Procedure regarding the scheduling of club meet bids, Riedlinger made a motion that the Committee endorse the bid for YORK's Cherry Blossom Meet and defer action on the remaining two meet bids until the Fall Competition meeting.  The motion was seconded and unanimously approved.


Scheduling of PVS Sponsored 2008 LC Meets:  The Committee was provided with a calendar showing Zone, National and International meets already planned.  It was initially proposed that the PVS LC meets remain on the same weekends as these meets were scheduled in 2007.  The proposed schedule was as follows:



Hirschmann suggested to the Committee that it consider moving the June meets one week later.  He noted that this was now possible as July 4th would be on a Friday in 2008 and was now well away from the prior weekend.  It was noted that, in doing so, the PVS Senior II/Age Group II would then occur on Father's Day.  Without further discussion, a motion to endorse the suggestion for the June meets passed.


A motion was made and seconded to endorse the PVS Long Course Championship meet dates as illustrated on the proposed calendar.  Discussion then occurred on the merits of maintaining the proposed schedule versus delaying the meets the meets by one week each.  Highlights of the discussion that followed are:


A motion was made and approved to divide the question and to address only the date of the PVS Age Group LC Championships.  A motion to move PVS Age Group LC Champs from July 17-20, 2008 to July 24-27, 2008 failed.


Competition then returned to the original motion that the Committee endorse that all three championship meets be retained on the dates as initially proposed.  This motion passed.


In summary, the proposed PVS Sponsored 2008 LC Meet Schedule being endorsed to the Board is as follows:


Criteria for Receiving PVS Travel Assistance:  Riedlinger noted that the Committee has previously recommended to the Board the criteria for receiving PVS Travel Assistance for national meets and that the requirements included both PVS sanctioned swims and PVS sponsored swims.  He continued by stating that John Mason had suggested a revision to the criteria for the 2007 LC season -- by removing the requirement that swims occur in PVS sponsored meets and only establishing a minimum of four swims at any PVS sanctioned meet.  A motion was made and seconded that the criteria for receiving PVS travel assistance be modified to state that the athlete must have competed in a minimum of 4 swims in any PVS sanctioned meet during the 2007 LC season with no minimum requirement of swims in any PVS sponsored meets.


The discussion that followed explained that the establishment of minimum swims at PVS sponsored meets was created as an inducement for teams to participate in PVS sponsored championship meets.  Those opposed to relaxing the requirements noted the importance of having nationally qualified swimmers compete locally while those in favor of relaxing the requirements noted the dearth of long course meets on the PVS scheduled.  An attempt to amend the motion so that travel assistance be provided without any minimum swim requirements failed.  Following discussion on the matter, the Committee voted to recommend to the Board that travel assistance criteria state that an athlete must have competed in a minimum of 4 swims in any PVS sanctioned meet.


Don noted that travel assistance requirement recommendations needed to be made at this meeting for two upcoming meets.  In line with the previous recommendation, the Committee agreed to establish the requirement for the 2007 USA Paralympics Can-Am Meet, December 6-8, 2007, of four swims in PVS sanctioned meets during the calendar period up to the date of the meet. 


In lieu of the US Open, which is not being held this year, USAS has a new meet, Short Course National Championships which will be held on November 29-December 1, 2007.  When the meet was held in the Spring, the requirements were previously set at nine total PVS sanctioned swims, with four PVS sponsored swims during the period of September 1st to the date of the meet.  A motion was made and seconded that the requirements for the new meet be set as six total PVS sanctioned swims, with three swims in PVS hosted meets, and that the swims occur during the period of September 1st to the date of the meet.  A friendly amendment was accepted to modify the period to begin April 1.  A second amendment was accepted to establish the swims at four in PVS sanctioned meets.  The recommendation passed with both amendments. 


Establishing recommended travel assistance requirements for United States Olympic Trials to be held in July 2008 was deferred until the Fall Competition Committee meeting.


Update on Age Group Development Committee:  Ward Foley informed the Committee that Age Group Development was working to improve and maximize the IMX program encouraging more swimmers to participate and create their own web pages.  He also explained that the Top 16 format will be eliminated in September 2008 and replaced with a Top 10 format with age groups of 10&U, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, and 17.  No ranking will be prepared for 18 year olds.  In response to a question regarding relays, Foley explained that the age groupings will be 10/U, 12/U, 14/U, 16/U and 18/U.  He encouraged those who had suggestions or recommendations for the Age Group Development Committee to contact him via e-mail.


Update on PVS/VSI Hosting of 2008 EZ LC Zones:  Bill Marlin reported to the Board that John Hirschmann, James Wolfe, VSI Age Group Chair, and he had met at last weekend's Eastern Zone meeting to discuss the joint hosting of the 2008 EZ LC Zones meet.  Final arrangements were underway for George Mason Freedom Center, George Mason Fairfax and Pohick Bay for Open Water. 


Marlin informed the Committee that he was recommending that the Zone participants be housed at home -- not in hotels-- because of the meet's proximity  to PVS.  An informal show of hands indicated that many supported his recommendation although those opposed made the following points:


Paris Jacobs explained to the Committee that she had researched what other Eastern Zone clubs had done when the meet was held at a location near or within their LSC and said that they offered participants a choice between two options.  Option 1 included hotel accommodations and group travel, while Option 2 included neither hotel accommodations nor travel.   The Committee agreed to recommend the offering of this two option plan to the Board.


Discussion on Chase Starts:   Bill Marlin offered the Committee a brief explanation of chase starts, noting that they are fairly common practice in some other LSC's.  A straw poll was taken and resulted in the Committee's endorsement to request the PVS Board to ask the Officials Committee to investigate the potential introduction of chase starts at long course meets.


Modification to Event Line-up at PVS Open Meets:  Marlin provided handouts of a proposed modification to the event line-up for the PVS October Open and PVS November Open Meets noting that the changes were based on a desire to separate IMX events (bold events) and to place the 500 free and 400 IM earlier in the line up.  In reviewing the proposal for the October Open, a suggestion was made to eliminate the 50 yard events; however, most Committee members indicated that including the events provided increased participation for newer athletes.  Separate motions to adopt the proposed 2007 October Open line up and proposed 2007 November Open line-up both carried.


Report on PVS Catch the Spirit Camp:  At Marlin's request, Manga Dalizu provided a brief report on the PVS Catch the Spirit Camp which had been held on Sunday, April 29, 2007 at Fairland Aquatic Center, for forty-two athletes aged 11-14.  A shorter program was provided for parents of those swimmers. The camp included classroom activities on topics such as nutrition, visualization and goal setting, as well as in-pool sessions.  Marlin noted that PVS was planning to schedule 3-4 additional camps in 2007-08.


Eastern Zone SC Team Report:  John Cyganiewicz, as Head Coach for the 2006 EZ SC Team, gave a brief report on the 2007 SC Eastern Zone meet.  He expressed his appreciation for the excellent coaching staff and stated that PVS finished 2nd overall.


PVS Senior SC Championships:   

 Riedlinger addressed the Committee on the issue of out-of-LSC team participation in the 2007 PVS Senior SC Championship meet. He explained that when PVS had separate Senior and Junior Championships, PVS had always permitted out-of-LSC teams to participate in the Senior meet in order to provide additional competition for the PVS athletes. When PVS eliminated the separate Junior meet in 2001 due to scheduling conflicts with the advent of Sectionals, the new combined Senior meet continued to permit out-of-LSC participation. Hence there was no change in philosophy regarding the meet this year. He provided historical data on the Senior SC Championship meets 2001-2003 indicating the number of out-of-LSC clubs (as high as 4), their percentage of athlete participation (as high as 7%) and their final team standing (either second or third). Riedlinger noted that a team cannot finish second or third without displacing some PVS athletes from Finals.

Riedlinger continued that when he became Senior Chair, he reviewed this data and announced a philosophy to continue the prior PVS practice and to attempt to limit the out-of-LSC participation to less than 10% of the total population. This was easily done in 2004 with 3 out-of-LSC clubs participating but the top finishing such club still achieving second place in team scoring. In 2005, no out-of-LSC club requests were received but one foreign athlete participated. And in 2006, 1 out-of-LSC club request to participate was received but was withdrawn by that club at the last minute. In 2007, 2 out-of-LSC club requests were initially received but one of these was withdrawn. We then received a late request from another club, and upon determining that it would comply with the previously stated attendance criteria, an invitation was extended. The actual out-of-LSC swimmers actually comprised 9% of the total participation and attained a second place team score.


He also noted that while one can somewhat manage the participation numbers, it is very difficult to project the quality of competition that even the PVS clubs will bring to the meet. The PVS participation has fluctuated but it has generally grown over the years. At the suggestion of the coaches, a fourth heat was added in finals this year to alleviate the number of PVS swimmers that were bumped by out-of-LSC swimmers. This was effective as opportunities for PVS swimmers in finals averaged 1-2 above the number that would have been available if there had been no out-of-LSC teams and only three final heats.


Riedlinger noted that the combined Senior meet attempts to satisfy four distinct purposes: (1) athletes attempting to achieve zone, sectional, junior or senior nationals cuts that benefit most from outside competition; (2) athletes who already have made their cuts and are using the meet as a tune-up; (3) junior athletes who are striving to achieve finals in a season culminating meet; and (4) recently qualified athletes for whom the meet is also their season culmination and who have achieved an honor to participate. In the event that no Junior Championship is offered in the future, Riedlinger suggested that PVS make the addition of the fourth final heat permanent.

Various opinions were expressed on the topic. Some expressed their concern that the decision to add a fourth heat was made in the absence of consultation with either the coaches representatives or the athlete representatives.  Many indicated that they believed Competition needed to address the philosophy of the meet to decide if it was a PVS or Open championship meet.  Still others expressed the need for the meet to address the development of athletes aged 13-16.

Commending the responsiveness of PVS to listen to its coaches and serve its athletes, Pete Morgan made a motion that future PVS Short Course Championship meets limit out-of-LSC athlete participation to 10% and that the format for future meets include four heats at finals. The motion was seconded and passed overwhelmingly.


Several additional items concluded the discussion on PVS Senior Championships.  It was noted that the March 2008 meet will be short course, while Sectionals will be long course.  Additionally, in 2009, with the elimination of USA Spring Nationals, and the potential for Eastern Zone Sectionals to be scheduled later in the calendar, there may be an opportunity to return Junior Championships to PVS's schedule.  Finally, Hirschmann informed the Committee that a venue had yet to be secured for 2008 PVS Short Course Senior Championships scheduled for March 10-13, 2008 as GMU/Fairfax had recently declined PVS's request for those dates (which had been pending for several months) and that neither GMU/Freedom Center nor Fairland were available.  A decision from PGS&LC was pending awaiting the dates of the NIKE indoor track meet.  Other venues are also still being investigated.


Report from Eastern Zone May 2007 Meeting:  Hirschmann informed the Committee that the agenda at the May 2007 Eastern Zone meeting was comprised of mostly discussion on future Zone matters and that few decisions were made.  Highlights of his report included:


Riedlinger apprised the Committee that the Zone was establishing a task force that will report in September regarding a Senior Circuit meet program within the Zone for LC competition.


In response to a question regarding bonus events at Sectionals, Hirschmann stated that no changes had been made. 


Board of Directors Strategic Planning Report:  Bill Stephens, Strategic Planning Chair, was provided an opportunity to address the Committee.  He began by reminding the Committee of the adoption of the PVS Officials Requirement and that the calculations as of May 1, 2007 were currently underway.  He also explained that Jim Thompson had developed a program to measure and track official participation in meets and was working with Hy-tek to develop a module for inclusion in its program.  The PVS Administrative Division was notifying the appropriate clubs of the results of the initial calculations.


Turning to the upcoming Annual House of Delegate meeting, Stephens informed the Committee of Strategic Planning's proposal to hire an Executive Director to enable the organization to move from a volunteer led and managed one that is a more staff drive model.  He encouraged those in attendance to review the Strategic Planning Report and the Description of Proposed Executive Director position and be prepared to vote on the matter at next weeks House of Delegates meeting. 


Old Business:  Paris Jacobs provided a brief update on the 2007 PVS Swimposium, scheduled for October 6, at Georgetown Prep.  In lieu of an ASCA program, the coaches' track will include items from USAS Sports Development (e.g., nutrition, website instruction, goal setting).  Joel Black will present the Officials' Track and he has agreed to include a portion of the time on chase starts. Paris stated she was hoping that Sue Anderson would again be able to present the Parents' Track.


New Business:  A number of items were raised during this portion of the meeting.  The first item concerned the cost of an athlete's participation on the Zone team.  It was requested that the matter be deferred as it was believed to be a topic better addressed at the House of Delegates meeting.


Marlin next proposed that language be included in all future meet announcements stating that all participating teams be required to provide one official per session.  It was noted that current meet announcements include language requiring one timer for each 25 entries, but that the requirement is usually not enforced.  While agreeing with the sentiment, some questioned the usefulness of this additional language.  The proposal was modified to request that each participating club send one table worker or official if it entered 25 or more splashes.  The Committee voted to endorse adding this language to future meet announcements.


Jim Garner reminded the body that this was Don Riedlinger's final Competition Committee meeting in his position as Senior Chair whereupon Dons prior service was acknowledged and he was thanked for his four years of service to PVS in this capacity.


In response to questions House of Delegates meeting, Jim Garner reviewed the Nominating Committee's slate for the positions of General Chair, Finance Vice Chair/Treasurer, Senior Chair and Board of Review that will be voted upon at the upcoming House of Delegates meeting.


John Ertter advised that he had recently attended the USAS sponsored, "Build a Pool Conference," and volunteered to provide any interested individuals with the conference materials.


The final item addressed was FCPA's offer to make Lee District available for competition on the weekend of February 22-24, 2008.  Noting that this was the same weekend as Metros and the Maryland High School Championship meets, the Chairman indicated he did not consider it appropriate to have PVS conduct a PVS Junior Championship Meet on that weekend.  The Committee made no decision regarding other possible uses of the pool on that weekend for other types of meets and/or a camp program.


Next Meeting:  The date and time of the next meeting were discussed.  It was agreed that the next meeting should occur following the USAS Convention which is scheduled for September 26 to 29, 2007.  It was also noted the Swimposium is scheduled for the following Saturday, October 6.The date chosen was Wednesday, October 3rd, 6:30PM with the location to be announced at a later date. 


Adjournment:  The meeting was adjourned at approximately 10:05PM.


Respectfully Submitted by,


Janet Auger

PVS Administrative Assistant