Spring Championship Meets
PVS SC Senior Championships will be held March 8-11 at George Mason University. This will be an Officials Qualifying Meet for the National Certification program; officials can be evaluated for N2 in all positions as well as N3 S&T Judge. Officials wishing to work at this meet should submit the application found on the PVS website. You must apply no later than March 1 for specific deck positions. However, late applications and walk-ins are also welcome and will be assigned to available positions. Any official interested in being evaluated at this meet must apply in advance.
Concurrent with Senior Champs, PVS SC Junior Championships will likewise be held March 8-11 at George Mason University. Officials wishing to work at this meet should submit the application found on the PVS website. You must apply no later than March 1 for assigned deck positions, but, once again, late applications and walk-ins are also welcome and will be assigned to available positions. This meet is separate from Senior Champs and is held under a separate sanction, although the finals sessions will be swum combined with the finals of Senior Champs.
On the following weekend, March 15-18, PVS 14 & Under Junior Olympic Championships will be held at Fairland Aquatic Center.
Finally, March 22-25 at George Mason University, PVS will be the host LSC for the Speedo Championship Series, Eastern Zone Southern Sectional Meet. This meet will feature outstanding senior swimmers from across the Eastern Zone. This will be an Officials Qualifying Meet for the National Certification program; officials can be evaluated for N2 certification in all positions, and N3 certification in all positions except Administrative Referee. Any official interested in being evaluated at this meet must apply in advance. If you really want to see how a national-level championship meet is run, this is the meet for you. Officials interested in working this meet should submit the Application to Officiate.
Make the Call
New Officials / Advancing Officials
Did You Know . .
USA Swimming recognizes two distinct levels of National Certification for officials: N2 and N3. N2, the first National level in a position, recognizes that an official is experienced and has been evaluated as capable of working the position at Sectional, Zone, Grand Prix and similar higher profile meets. N3, the second and highest National level in a position, is likewise administered by the National Officials Committee and recognizes that an official has the experience, skills, and knowledge to be considered for selection to work National Championship level meets in the position. Requirements for progression to N2 and N3 levels in the positions of Stroke and Turn Judge, Chief Judge, Starter, Deck Referee, and Admin Referee can be found on the USA Swimming website.
is a Heat ‘Closed’? - from
the Pacific Northwest Swimming Athletes Newsletter, used by permission
There has been some belief that the raising of the arm by the referee “closes the heat” and that any swimmer that steps up on the block after the arm is raised should be disqualified for delay of meet. In fact, there is nothing in the rules that states that once the arm is raised the heat is closed. The raising of the arm merely means that the heat is turned over to the starter. If the referee determines that a swimmer was somehow prevented from getting to the blocks or that there is some commotions behind the blocks that prevented the swimmer from getting to the blocks, then he or she is well within the rules to allow the swimmer to compete. It could also be that a timer or another person told the swimmer not to step up because it was not their heat.
Any of these is sufficient grounds to allow the swimmer to swim. So the mere raising of the arm does not automatically mean a swimmer that steps up thereafter is disqualified. A referee can and should intervene in the competition at any time to make sure the conditions for racing are fair and equitable for all swimmers. This would include the above examples.
With respect to finals, there is no requirement that the referee step the swimmers up on the blocks and raise his arm to close the heat before you can call the alternate. In fact, such a practice would seem to be unsettling to the 7 swimmers waiting to swim. If a referee observes that there is an open lane in the C finals (or consols or B finals if only 2 finals heats), and he determines that the swimmer is not present, he can call for the alternate without stepping up the heat and raising his arm. Now the real problem occurs when the referee calls for the alternate and the swimmer originally set to swim shows up late. Again, the referee should investigate and determine if there is a valid reason for the swimmer not being at the blocks at the time of the swim. Some would disagree – if you are not there when the heat is called, you’re out.
I will give one easy example of how this is not so easy to determine and should be decided based on the facts at the time. At a recent national meet, we had a swimmer fail to appear behind the blocks for the backstroke. The referee stepped the swimmers into the pool and then noticed the missing swimmer. She called for the alternate who appeared ready to swim. At this point, the swimmer originally slated to swim showed up. His excuse was he was a foreign athlete and he was waiting in the ready room area to be brought to the blocks. It’s your call, should he be disqualified or allowed to swim? Some would say that the alternate should swim because the original swimmer failed to appear ready to swim. Others say that the original swimmer should be allowed to swim based on the situation. Well, the swimmer was allowed to swim and I agree with the decision. Too many times folks want black and white rules, but some of our rules are written so that the officials can make a right call at the time depending on the situation. While there are some rules that are black and white – simultaneous two hand touch on breast and fly – in many cases there is no cut and dry rule and the official must use their best judgment based on the facts.
Resolution to ‘You Make