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Kurt Dickson
May 24th, 2011, 10:17 AM
The anti-sandbag law:
"if a swimmer enters an event with a time significantly slower or faster than that swimmer's recorded time in the past two years, the meet director may, after a discussion with the swimmer, change the seeded time to a realistic time" (104.5.5.A(10)).

Concerning my Auburn nationals entry, I confess, when faced with a 7 hour 2 stop flight and 3:45 nonstop at an earlier time, I did what any warm-blooded middle-aged American swimmer with low self-esteem would do--sandbag my entry so I could catch the earlier flight, thus diminishing the possible time spent sitting next to a 400 pound Alabama slammer with sleep apnea wearing nothing but overalls and body odor. Of course, I was caught in my bold fabrication and my time was "fixed."

USMS seems to have an identity problem. Are we hard core with rigid qualifying times? It would seem not as 2 of my not-so-speedy family members were allowed to swim four events last year in Puerto Rico. If we are not hard core, why does anybody care that I sandbag? More to the point, why can one person enter a crappy time and another cannot? Just wondering.:)

knelson
May 24th, 2011, 11:05 AM
I think it's one of those things where on a micro level it's obviously not going to affect the timeline by much. Kurt Dickson sandbagging one event may not affect the timeline at all, but when people start sandbagging as a matter of course it can cause the meet to run significantly longer, and in my opinion this is the only reason why sandbagging is "bad." I couldn't care less where anyone seeds themselves otherwise, but--especially at long course Nationals where days can be long--I think sandbagging should definitely be discouraged.

aquageek
May 24th, 2011, 11:14 AM
I'll put my two cents in, which probably won't be popular. If you are unable to put an accurate time, for whatever reason, put NT. Everyone knows the NT heat(s) are the wild west.

The meet is the meet, not a particular swimmer's meet. Despite always trying to swim my own race, it is highly annoying to have someone beside me blow it out simply because they put a sandbag time. If they just swim the race of their life, good for them.

I also think you should not be allowed to do a partial swim for a time if the actual event is that same day. But, that is a longstanding swimming norm so I don't get too worked up about it either way.

I'm also Lanes 1 and 8 phobic and would consider all manners of sandbagging if I knew for sure a sandbag time would keep me from those lanes.

Kurt Dickson
May 24th, 2011, 11:29 AM
For the record, I generally hate sandbagging. I often swim the mile locally by myself at local meets as others have entered NT. Kirk's point of extending the meet is valid at least on a local level as the slow swimmers are then spread over 2 heats rather than just one. Not sure if it would have that kind of impact on a larger scale (or perhaps it would be worse).

Rotating fastest to slowest and slowest to fastest would seem fair as USMS consistently favors slower swimmers with more desirable times to swim (although I do love swimming the mile at 8 pm or later every year while everybody else is cozy in bed or eating dinner). Also, as a side benefit, fastest to slowest would obviate any desire to sandbag.

Chris Stevenson
May 24th, 2011, 11:30 AM
Are NTs allowed at nationals?

I really dislike sandbagging: it slows the meet for everyone, it is essentially dishonest, and it can disconcert others in the heat. But also I dislike it because I enjoy competition (esp at nationals), and if one of my potential competitors is in another heat or an outside lane, it lessens the experience somewhat.

But it is hard to enforce unless blatant. There are some pretty legitimate reasons for entering a time much slower than a previous effort: if injury or life cuts training time drastically, for example. I guess that's why the "discussion" part is in the rule.

2trax4me
May 24th, 2011, 11:39 AM
so what does one do if entering a meet for the first time in say 17 years? A NT is not realistic but a "guess" is going to upset someone. I will either be a sandbagger or a glory days swimmer.

knelson
May 24th, 2011, 11:50 AM
so what does one do if entering a meet for the first time in say 17 years? A NT is not realistic but a "guess" is going to upset someone.

It shouldn't if it's a good guess. No one's going to be upset if you're a few seconds away from your seed time in either direction. You could always TT the event(s) at practice and use that as a seed time, too.

Chris Stevenson
May 24th, 2011, 12:04 PM
This is pretty harsh. I hardly think it's dishonest to put down a slow seed time to get to the airport or to ameliorate an inequity (best events back to back, fast women stuck in end lanes at mixed meet, etc.). Plus, people do perfectly legal split requests all the time which changes the race dynamics.

One may justify it by circumstances -- and the justification may even be a good one -- but if you enter a time that you KNOW will be much different than what you will actually do, then I think "dishonest" is absolutely accurate. And beyond the whole honesty thing, it is ultimately selfish, a "tragedy of the commons" type of situation: you are asking others to bear a portion of the cost of your personal gain (to leave early or whatever).

Split requests of the kind you describe -- where you go all-out for (say) the first half of the race and loaf the rest -- are a different animal, and they aren't all that common. I bet only a tiny fraction of sandbags describe this scenario.

Karl_S
May 24th, 2011, 12:09 PM
so what does one do if entering a meet for the first time in say 17 years? A NT is not realistic but a "guess" is going to upset someone. I will either be a sandbagger or a glory days swimmer.
Matt, when faced with this problem I have used the best time I have achieved in practice in the past few months - basically Kirk's TT idea. It's honest, I really have swum that time recently, and it gets me into a heat where I don't look ridiculous. You might expect that since meet times are almost always faster than practice times, this would place you in a heat that is too slow and you will easily win the heat, but in my experience it does not work that way because there are always a few people who have a good swim and beat their seed time.

aquageek
May 24th, 2011, 12:24 PM
The meet is the same for every entrant. Every swimmer at every meet has circumstances they wish would be different, order of events, water temp, seeding, etc. A swimmer can skip a meet or alter their event choices. Asking your heat mates to alter theirs is poor sportsmanship.

I swam a 200 back during the 200 free recently. Despite hitting my seed time within :01 I notified the entire world of what I was doing and still felt like a tool for doing it.

pwb
May 24th, 2011, 12:26 PM
Kurt:


I feel your pain.
Aside from the timing and a bad cow-tipping memory from Auburn, a big reason for me NOT to go to summer Nationals is that Auburn is a pain to get to ... pretty much for everyone except those who live there.
Be happy that at least Paul Smith seems to have gotten the hang of swimming distance events fastest to slowest at his local meets. Maybe the other 3 guys who run meets in Arizona (attention: Simon Percy, Mark Rankin and Jim Stites) will catch on.
I promise to try to start swimming longer events at local meets so you're not so lonely. :bighug:

On sandbagging and entry times in general:


I try to follow a sort of golden rule for entering meets: enter the time I think I'm capable of going given all the life and training factors leading up to the meet.
I don't like sandbaggers, but I also don't like rose-colored glasses optimists who swim way slower than their times, primarily for a reason Chris gave: I like competition.
With that said, I don't like the idea of a meet director discussing how to adjust my times. If this concept catches on, the people who will be most penalized will be those who race the most because they have the greatest volume of data from which a random meet director can 'estimate' their 'proper' entry time.

stillwater
May 24th, 2011, 12:27 PM
If you swim a time close to your seed time no one cares. For example warm down or warm up.

If you blow out the heat for what ever personal reason I think it cheapens your time, and is a slap in the face to your fellow competitors.

knelson
May 24th, 2011, 12:40 PM
Be happy that at least Paul Smith seems to have gotten the hang of swimming distance events fastest to slowest at his local meets. Maybe the other 3 guys who run meets in Arizona (attention: Simon Percy, Mark Rankin and Jim Stites) will catch on.

The local meets are where I'd love to see the occasional fast to slow seeding. Distance events are almost always the last event and it definitely affects my desire to swim if I know I'm going to be in the very last heat of the day.

At Nationals slow to fast more often than not helps me. For example in Mesa I was able to fly in Thursday morning knowing I wouldn't be swimming the 1650 until sometimes in the afternoon. Distance events don't typically end the days at Nationals, so I don't think it's as much of an issue--IMO, of course.

Kurt Dickson
May 24th, 2011, 01:25 PM
A few points: A rule is only legitimate if it can be enforced equally. As an example (keeping the insults close to home), if my wife (who by the way, has mad bike skills but suspect swimming skills) decides to tack on 5 minutes to her entry time, nobody would bat an eye. But since I am perhaps recognized by someone in data entry, I cannot get away with the same thing? This seems unfair and inconsistent.

If getting blown away throws off your race, consider that it happens in all the heats (I was next to Mike Ross in the 200 Free at Indy and I believe I was beaten by around 10 seconds).

I offered to tell everyone in my heat and wear a scarlet S on my chest to no avail. I agree that it is dishonest and hampers competition, but still would like to do it as I do not want to be held hostage for another day in Alabama. If you feel me blowing out the first heat cheapens the competition, I would submit that they probably would not know the difference: many are the same semi-oblivious people that are in front of me at a light when it turns green and then red, causing them to finally speed off, leaving me to wait through yet another light.:)

Patrick, I look forward to your return as a D-man and I can assume my rightful place as third best 40-44 D-man in AZ (or did I miss someone else?).:bighug:Back at you buddy.

aquageek
May 24th, 2011, 01:26 PM
...would be guilty of dishonesty and immorality.

I thought we were talking about swimming, not golf.

gull
May 24th, 2011, 01:32 PM
If we had both prelims and finals, sandbagging would be less of an issue. Since we only have timed finals, the practice appears self-serving and unsportsmanlike.

Chris Stevenson
May 24th, 2011, 01:41 PM
It's difficult enough for many to find the time and energy to even attend meets. And it's difficult to estimate times in the non tech suit era. Most people do their best with entries.

I wouldn't call making a mistaken prediction, "sandbagging." You enter the approximate time you think you will do. There is a chance (like the previous poster who hadn't swum in 17 years) you might be off by quite a bit.

Your comment about time & energy works both ways. Sandbagging lessens the experience for others who expend "time and energy to attend meets." There is a reason it is against the rules, after all.


If getting blown away throws off your race, consider that it happens in all the heats (I was next to Mike Ross in the 200 Free at Indy and I believe I was beaten by around 10 seconds).

I don't think this is quite the same thing. I seem to recall that Mike enters a time he has done previously, or something close to it. If you are next to someone that you know is much faster than you, it shouldn't surprise you that he goes out fast. But if you are next to someone you don't know with the same entry time as you, and s/he blows you away on the first lap, then yes that can affect some people.

Look, I don't think sandbagging equates to child molesting or anything. It is a minor aggravation in the big scheme of things, like being exposed to second-hand smoke. But be honest about it: if you think it doesn't affect anyone else (even if in a relatively small way), then you are kidding yourself.

That Guy
May 24th, 2011, 01:43 PM
Regarding split request swims, you can still enter the race with an honest estimate. If you're going to swim the first 100 in 1 minute and the second 100 in around 3 minutes, then enter with a time of 4 minutes. If you end up close to your entry time and don't hold up the meet then no one should have a problem with it. I recall that Paul Smith's 1000 where he raced only the first 100 ended up very close to his entry time, and also ehoch did a 1500 where he raced the first 400 (I think) and also ended up very close to his entry time.

pmccoy
May 24th, 2011, 01:50 PM
thus diminishing the possible time spent sitting next to a 400 pound Alabama slammer with sleep apnea wearing nothing but overalls and body odor.

Aside from the timing and a bad cow-tipping memory from Auburn, a big reason for me NOT to go to summer Nationals is that Auburn is a pain to get to ... pretty much for everyone except those who live there.


I know a couple people that aren't getting the deluxe Cam Newton Sightseeing tour unless their attitude toward the great state of Alabama changes some.

aquageek
May 24th, 2011, 01:51 PM
I know a couple people that aren't getting the deluxe Cam Newton Sightseeing tour unless their attitude toward the great state of Alabama changes some.

He's in Charlotte now. Gee, thanks a lot.

Kurt Dickson
May 24th, 2011, 02:03 PM
if you thinks it doesn't affect anyone else (even if in a relatively small way), then you are kidding yourself.

I have knowingly sandbagged once in 19 years (this would have been number 2). I do not believe I said my sandbagging would not affect someone else, I just did not think it was a significant enough issue for me to worry about. If you don't think I know about tragedy of the commons--I work in the ER, I am living the dream.
Bottom line: There is no way to apply this rule in an even manner.

thewookiee
May 24th, 2011, 02:11 PM
He's in Charlotte now. Gee, thanks a lot.

When he left auburn for charlotte, did he take a paycut?




Aside from the timing and a bad cow-tipping memory from Auburn, a big reason for me NOT to go to summer Nationals is that Auburn is a pain to get to ... pretty much for everyone except those who live there.


I live close to alabama. Auburn is still a pain in the butt to get too by car. I drive to atlanta, head west from there. Once I get to where the interstate ends and the dirt road begins(usually at the GA/AL state line) I have to wait until the dirt road dries out from the rain. Otherwise, I would be stuck. We have to fill-up with gas before entering AL, since grass and hay work better for horse fuel than car fuel.


If we had both prelims and finals, sandbagging would be less of an issue. Since we only have timed finals, the practice appears self-serving and unsportsmanlike.

Agreed

knelson
May 24th, 2011, 02:17 PM
Once I get to where the interstate ends and the dirt road begins(usually at the GA/AL state line) I have to wait until the dirt road dries out from the rain.

And if you're lucky the bridge won't be out and Sheriff Rosco P. Coltrane won't be out enforcing the $100 "exit fee" for leaving Hazzard County.

Chris Stevenson
May 24th, 2011, 02:24 PM
I have knowingly sandbagged once in 19 years (this would have been number 2). I do not believe I said my sandbagging would not affect someone else, I just did not think it was a significant enough issue for me to worry about. If you don't think I know about tragedy of the commons--I work in the ER, I am living the dream.
Bottom line: There is no way to apply this rule in an even manner.

The "you" was meant to be general, not you specifically. I'm not judging, despite how the posts might come across. Sandbagging annoys me but I go through entire days where I don't think about it all.:)

fmracing
May 24th, 2011, 02:32 PM
Strangely, kids don't seem to care what seed time someone enters with. Is it a learned trait with age to worry about something this insignificant? The only times I've ever heard anyone complain about someone else's seed times, it was either a masters swimmer, a disgruntled coach, or a uptight age group parent (and this was pretty rare), but never a competitor 8-18, nor collegiate for that matter.... that's just an observation :)

Just beat everyone in your event and you got nothing to worry about seed times :D

knelson
May 24th, 2011, 02:46 PM
The only times I've ever heard anyone complain about someone else's seed times, it was either a masters swimmer, a disgruntled coach, or a uptight age group parent

Slight tangent, but funny you mention this. The first time I recall anyone complaining about someone else's seed time was when I was a teenager and it was the parent of another swimmer. This was at our state long course championship meet and this parent approached me while I was eating breakfast and asked if I had seen this (third) swimmer swim the time he was seeded with in the 1500. I said no. This kid was entered with a very fast time and obviously the parent was miffed that he was seeded ahead of or very close to his son's time (who was a phenomenal swimmer).

Now here's the kicker to this story. I just read in the last couple years that the coach of the third swimmer--the one with the dubious seed time--was reprimanded by USA Swimming for entering his swimmers with bogus times. As in they hadn't achieved Sectional times, but he falsified results to make it look like they had. So, looks like the disgruntled parent all those years ago may have been on to something!

fmracing
May 24th, 2011, 02:55 PM
Now here's the kicker to this story. I just read in the last couple years that the coach of the third swimmer--the one with the dubious seed time--was reprimanded by USA Swimming for entering his swimmers with bogus times. As in they hadn't achieved Sectional times, but he falsified results to make it look like they had. So, looks like the disgruntled parent all those years ago may have been on to something!

Certainly a notable story, but also notable was that it only seems to have effected the people who weren't competing. :) Did the "bad seed" have any effect on the outcome?

thewookiee
May 24th, 2011, 03:04 PM
And if you're lucky the bridge won't be out and Sheriff Rosco P. Coltrane won't be out enforcing the $100 "exit fee" for leaving Hazzard County.

Kurt, sheriff coltrane only charges a $100 entry fee for residents of alabama. He is trying to keep his beautiful state of Georgia free from being infested by two-tooth sally and billy bob bo dean.

The rest of us, that aren't residents of alabama, he, deputy cletus and deputy enos allow to travel freely into hazzard county

pmccoy
May 24th, 2011, 03:04 PM
And if you're lucky the bridge won't be out and Sheriff Rosco P. Coltrane won't be out enforcing the $100 "exit fee" for leaving Hazzard County.
Hazzard County is clearly on the Georgia side of the border (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Dukes_of_Hazzard)

And before you go there, Mayberry was in NC and I think the Clampetts were from Arkansas. I'm pretty sure we've had our fair share of citizen appearances on COPS though.

gull
May 24th, 2011, 03:05 PM
Is it a learned trait with age to worry about something this insignificant?

Apparently it is not insignificant to those who choose to sandbag. Why then does it become insignificant when other swimmers complain about it?

knelson
May 24th, 2011, 03:07 PM
Did the "bad seed" have any effect on the outcome?

Probably not. I remember thinking at the time "who cares?" Of course falsifying times to get kids into a meet that haven't qualified for is a different scenario entirely, but it's probably a slippery slope. The coach knows a swimmer can swim faster so he doctors the seed time. It's just another step to go from this to doctoring times to get kids into a meet they haven't qualified for.

Kurt Dickson
May 24th, 2011, 03:43 PM
If I could meet Daisy Duke while I'm there I would be so over missing my 400.:)

That Guy
May 24th, 2011, 03:49 PM
Apparently it is not insignificant to those who choose to sandbag. Why then does it become insignificant when other swimmers complain about it?

I don't complain about it, I laugh about it!

Flip side however: two weekends ago I raced the 100 SCM breaststroke for only the second time in my life. So I entered with the only time I had, which was from 2007. That time placed me in the next-to-last heat. I beat my seed time by over 7 seconds and finished way ahead of the rest of my heat. Needless to say I was happy with the time (I thought I could improve on the 2007 time, but NO WAY did I see THAT coming) but I also thought, "I must look like a jerk right now" because of the appearance of sandbagging to get "clear water" or whatever. In that situation, maybe I should have entered with a conversion of my SCY time, which would have been faster than the time I entered with.

That Guy
May 24th, 2011, 04:14 PM
Like second hand smoke, seriously? ... you have the luxury of virtually always swimming in a center lane. ... Try being a fast women in a mixed meet and always being in an outside lane unless you enter slower seed times.

You're Outside Smoke, he's Second-Hand Smoke, this could be the best gridge ever! :banana:

pmccoy
May 24th, 2011, 04:25 PM
Working on my southern drawl!

Do people in Alabama sandbag? I think so judging from the Feb. Auburn meets. :) :bolt:
Yes, I frequently try to move from heat 5 to heat 8 becasue I look awesome swimming against 83 year old ladies. Well... except for that one lady... but I'm pretty sure she was lying about her age and she hasn't produced a birth certificate yet. I'm thinking next year I'll hide her walker so she has to get to the starting block on her own like the rest of us.

We had our share of "NTs" and sandbaggers at Auburn in Feb. I think most were just trying to buffer some rest so that they could compete in back to back events. I can see why officials don't like it. Still, Auburn ran like clockwork this year so sandbaggers didn't impact the schedule at all.

gull
May 24th, 2011, 04:28 PM
If we are going to accept seed times that are intentionally (and grossly) inaccurate, then we should just seed the heats randomly.

aquageek
May 24th, 2011, 04:38 PM
LIs it fair for the fastest men to always get the coveted center lanes and the fastest women to always get the outside lanes?


But, a meet isn't about a single swimmer or their lane assignment. Should everyone sandbag to get a better lane? Wouldn't that put us right back in the same position? What makes it more or less fair for one swimmer is completely irrelevant because that invariably makes it less fair for another, which is also irrelevant.

For the record I have never seen a mixed gender event in the Dixie Zone meets I attend except the 400/500+ events. And, I've been chicked in many distance events where the woman had a "better" lane than me. That's not fair, or is it?

pmccoy
May 24th, 2011, 04:56 PM
That's how it was when I was there in 2009. I entered an NT in the 100 fly because it was my SCY taper meet and my events were close. I really don't think I bothered a soul. Well, maybe I've annoyed Chris and Gull just reading about my outrageous dishonesty. :)
Truth be told, they still speak of the '09 sanbagger even today. I wasn't there but I hear this individual billy clubbed the knees of an elderly man because he might finish on the same lap as said sandbagger.

aquageek
May 24th, 2011, 04:58 PM
I wasn't saying it was about a single swimmer. I was commenting on the fate of a gender in mixed gender meets. And there is an actual rule that addresses this inequity -- the fastest seed in an age group at a mixed gender meet is not supposed to be in an outside lane. The rule is there for a purpose, right? To prevent unfairness, right? Yet it is almost never applied, so unfairness ensues.


Take it up with the meet directors then. This isn't a problem here, nor in OW where all are equal.


And what about scratching? If someone enters more events than they plan to swim to keep their options open and then leaves an open lane, is this dishonest as well?

This, too, merits discussion. Good question. If a meet is a flat fee I have done this. Actually, I have done it in a number of meets, flat fee or per event fee, especially if I sign up way in advance.

qbrain
May 24th, 2011, 05:14 PM
Is this the new tech suit thread? I totally missed out on that endlessly repetitive argument based on meaningless drivel the last eight times around but I am on board for this one.

For those of you who actually compete enough to have reasonable approximations of what times you will go, good for you! Remind me to pat you on the head the next time I see you.

For those of you who expect heats to be reasonably competitive, dial back your expectations. This is masters swimming, the person next to you on the blocks is there just as likely from a made up time that is too fast as a made up time that is too slow. We don't have a SWIMS database to verify times against, nor do some (most?) of us compete enough that a SWIMS database/estimations would be all that meaningful.

At a championship meet where sandbagging could affect the timeline for the distance events and it becomes a logistical problem for finishing the meet in a timely fashion, the number of entrants could be capped or a qualification time could be required, either would allow for an estimated timeline. Shockingly, one or both of these solutions is already used by most meets with time constraints.

For the events that are below a 400, do a timeline analysis of a random seed compared to circle seeding, throw in the actual seeding and timeline for good measure. I would love to see it published how many minutes could be saved.

For those of you who want more competitive competition, look no further! http://www.usaswimming.org/

Kurt Dickson
May 24th, 2011, 05:51 PM
Is this the new tech suit thread? I totally missed out on that endlessly repetitive argument based on meaningless drivel the last eight times around but I am on board for this one.

For those of you who actually compete enough to have reasonable approximations of what times you will go, good for you! Remind me to pat you on the head the next time I see you.

For those of you who expect heats to be reasonably competitive, dial back your expectations. This is masters swimming, the person next to you on the blocks is there just as likely from a made up time that is too fast as a made up time that is too slow. We don't have a SWIMS database to verify times against, nor do some (most?) of us compete enough that a SWIMS database/estimations would be all that meaningful.

At a championship meet where sandbagging could affect the timeline for the distance events and it becomes a logistical problem for finishing the meet in a timely fashion, the number of entrants could be capped or a qualification time could be required, either would allow for an estimated timeline. Shockingly, one or both of these solutions is already used by most meets with time constraints.

For the events that are below a 400, do a timeline analysis of a random seed compared to circle seeding, throw in the actual seeding and timeline for good measure. I would love to see it published how many minutes could be saved.

For those of you who want more competitive competition, look no further! http://www.usaswimming.org/

Not sure I understand your post. Are you going to pat me on the head next time you see me? Endless drivel? Arguing about nothing is what we do here. No data base? I think there is one. More competition? Not really desired...that is why I have not swam an age group meet in over 20 years. Timeline for a few random sandbaggers? I'm sure CS is working on it. I suspect it would not differ more than 10 minutes for the 400.

pwb
May 24th, 2011, 05:56 PM
I know a couple people that aren't getting the deluxe Cam Newton Sightseeing tour unless their attitude toward the great state of Alabama changes some.
My attitude toward Alabama is great -- our wonderful and never publicly maligned state of Arizona owes Alabama a great deal as I seem to recall our Dept of Education crowing every year about how we just edged out Alabama (or was it Mississippi?) to NOT be the last in national educational rankings.


Bottom line: There is no way to apply this rule in an even manner.Absolutely.


For those of you who want more competitive competition, look no further! http://www.usaswimming.org/A funny thing happens to me when I go to mid-season meets and race agains the kids. I don't know if this is a rule or common practice, but the kids always seem to be entered in their absolute best times from SWIMS regardless of what meet they're swimming in. Early season and mid-season, these guys are all over the map in their performance relative to their entry times.

Bottom line - take a clue from the songstress of our times and Just Race! But, don't let the meet director become the arbitrary meet dictator and start changing people's entry times.

qbrain
May 24th, 2011, 06:05 PM
Not sure I understand your post.

I didn't expect you to.

qbrain
May 24th, 2011, 06:12 PM
A funny thing happens to me when I go to mid-season meets and race agains the kids. I don't know if this is a rule or common practice, but the kids always seem to be entered in their absolute best times from SWIMS regardless of what meet they're swimming in. Early season and mid-season, these guys are all over the map in their performance relative to their entry times.


Depends on the meet, but some of our local meets just require a time in SWIMS, others require the fastest time in SWIMS. Sounds like yours consistently require fastest times from SWIMS.

The distance events would have more spread than the sprints, so it would probably be more noticeable to you. But outside of nationals, is there a USMS meet where you feel like you see more competition than a local USA-S meet?

aquageek
May 24th, 2011, 06:24 PM
For those of you who expect heats to be reasonably competitive, dial back your expectations. This is masters swimming, the person next to you on the blocks is there just as likely from a made up time that is too fast as a made up time that is too slow.

While I agree with most of your post, it ignores the basic tenet of sportsmanship, if that is important, or fair, or both, probably neither.

It's my hunch, but not something that I can prove (http://forums.usms.org/blog.php?b=15720) that the faster 2-3 heats in most meets have accurate seed times, or seed times based on experience (and possibly on experienced sandbagging).

Ironically, in some meets the fastest heat can be the least competitive, with the ultra fast swimmers in lanes 4 and 5 and some hangers-on in the other lanes. It brings back the fond memories of being in the same heat of the 1000 with Justine Mueller and Joseph Arnold.

Oh, and if you post pictures of yourself with Strawberry Shortcake lunch attire, you are prohibited from making fun of arguing about nothing.

qbrain
May 24th, 2011, 06:24 PM
Your analysis suggests that unintentional sandbagging is a greater hazard than intentional sandbagging.

That wasn't my intent. My intent was to throw out some inflammatory remarks that contributed nothing to the argument about Sandbagging: Satanic Practice or Divine Right?

I do love Chris' line that sandbagging kills kittens.

ElaineK
May 24th, 2011, 06:35 PM
:Lurking: OK, I was lurking until now; I'll admit it! But, I didn't want Fort to be stuck being the only woman on the thread, so I thought I would jump in.

I try to provide seed times as accurately as possible, but I must have had delusions of grandeur thinking I would beat my PB's (used as my seed times) in Mesa. :frustrated: Those conditions and my medical issues didn't mix and I knew that when I signed up, but I did not want to miss out on Nationals. It must have been fun for all of the others who seeded at 38.something in my 50 breaststroke heat, when I came in panting with jello arms and legs at 42.whatever-it-was-I-don't-want-to-remember. :blush:

aquageek
May 24th, 2011, 06:37 PM
Sandbagging is putting a time that is slower than you expect, normally a good bit slower, to improve your heat position. It is not putting a stretch time and not hitting it for whatever reason.

Paul Smith
May 24th, 2011, 06:39 PM
Kurt:


I feel your pain.
Aside from the timing and a bad cow-tipping memory from Auburn, a big reason for me NOT to go to summer Nationals is that Auburn is a pain to get to ... pretty much for everyone except those who live there.
Be happy that at least Paul Smith seems to have gotten the hang of swimming distance events fastest to slowest at his local meets. Maybe the other 3 guys who run meets in Arizona (attention: Simon Percy, Mark Rankin and Jim Stites) will catch on.
I promise to try to start swimming longer events at local meets so you're not so lonely. :bighug:

On sandbagging and entry times in general:


I try to follow a sort of golden rule for entering meets: enter the time I think I'm capable of going given all the life and training factors leading up to the meet.
I don't like sandbaggers, but I also don't like rose-colored glasses optimists who swim way slower than their times, primarily for a reason Chris gave: I like competition.
With that said, I don't like the idea of a meet director discussing how to adjust my times. If this concept catches on, the people who will be most penalized will be those who race the most because they have the greatest volume of data from which a random meet director can 'estimate' their 'proper' entry time.


It's amazing what running a meet/or being involved with running a meet can do to alter your perception of things like this!!

Please always enter an NT if the event is seeded slowest to fastest!

Aside from running fastest to slowest in the distance events we also found that if we can set up the course to allow for a "free" lane we can actually keep running heats around a swimmer that is entered with an extremely slow time (47 minute mile being the case in point)....you need a good Hy-Tek operator and always communicate with the swimmer!

Forts point is a good one as well...at this years state meet we ran separate heats for men and women and it went great and didn't add a significant amount of time to the timeline, so going forward we will do this for all of our meets (the exception might be a single male or female entered in an event than we would most likely merge...

With regard to a meet director discussing times with a swimmer who may be sandbagging, I will absolutely do it if its a blatant case that is impacting the meet experience for the people around them...so Dickson be warned!! :)

pwb
May 24th, 2011, 06:41 PM
But outside of nationals, is there a USMS meet where you feel like you see more competition than a local USA-S meet?I think I'm lucky in that, for almost any event I swim at almost any Arizona Masters meet, there's someone to race against. We've got a great set of fast guys from the 20-somethings to the 40-somethings who will push me or beat me in pretty much any race I want to enter. About the only race I consistently swim 'alone' here is the 400 IM, but I'm sure that'll change now that I just said that.

The kids meets definitely provide more depth of competition and there's a freshness to racing the kids since I generally don't know these kids' racing styles, strengths, race strategies, etc. as well as I do know those things for some of my fellow Masters.

Chris Stevenson
May 24th, 2011, 07:08 PM
A funny thing happens to me when I go to mid-season meets and race agains the kids. I don't know if this is a rule or common practice, but the kids always seem to be entered in their absolute best times from SWIMS regardless of what meet they're swimming in. Early season and mid-season, these guys are all over the map in their performance relative to their entry times.

Around here, at least, the times aren't under the control of the kids. They just indicate which events they are interested in (choices that can be overridden by the coach) and the club enters all of them at once.

I recently "entered" a USA-S meet in this fashion, and the system automatically filled in my best SWIMS times (from taper meets). I couldn't change these times, unfortunately; I'm sure I'll be much, much slower than them.

I remember (not necessarily fondly) my parents making me fill in the entry cards for meets, one for each event. It took forever. While I wish I could have changed my entry times, entering meets certainly is faster nowadays.


Like second hand smoke, seriously? Second hand smoke causes cancer and is a disaster for asthmatics. I'm sure you can think of a more apt analogy. For example, I just drove down a neighborhood street at 28 mph instead of 25 mph.

Sandbagging doesn't really effect you -- you have the luxury of virtually always swimming in a center lane. So why does it aggravate you so much? Bobby Patten just entered with slow times at Nats b/c he didn't expect to go so fast -- an honest mistake, right?

Your replacement analogy is interesting. I can argue that both things (second-hand smoke and speeding) have very similar effects: a small increased risk of death or injury/disease. You clearly find one (+3 mph speeding) pretty insignificant compared to the other; I can find plenty of self-appointed mom "traffic cops" in my neighborhood that would disagree with you. (Those people scare me. Seriously.)

Obviously sandbagging doesn't cause cancer. But what you find insignificant, others do not. Every nationals I have attended has had at least one event affected by sandbagging. Did Bobby (whom I consider a friend) sandbag? You'd have to ask him, but I notice that if he had entered his fastest time from the previous year, we could have had a nice, non-virtual race: he would have been two lanes over from me instead of in another heat. Along those lines, I almost never swim in a lane anywhere near Jeff Erwin in the 500 because he always enters slow. Just two examples, there are others.

Does this keep me awake at nights gnashing my teeth? Of course not. But this is a thread about sandbagging so I'm declaring my distaste for it.


Strangely, kids don't seem to care what seed time someone enters with. Is it a learned trait with age to worry about something this insignificant? The only times I've ever heard anyone complain about someone else's seed times, it was either a masters swimmer, a disgruntled coach, or a uptight age group parent (and this was pretty rare), but never a competitor 8-18, nor collegiate for that matter.... that's just an observation :)

Good point. Now I have to rethink my stance on fart jokes and Justin Bieber to better reflect teen sensibilities.

swimsuit addict
May 24th, 2011, 07:09 PM
Ok so now I am curious--just how blatant was your sandbagging, Kurt, that it got picked up by the meet director?

Just wondering what the parameters might be here . . .:bolt:

orca1946
May 24th, 2011, 07:35 PM
Are they just kidding themselves???

jaadams1
May 24th, 2011, 08:01 PM
But, a meet isn't about a single swimmer or their lane assignment. Should everyone sandbag to get a better lane? Wouldn't that put us right back in the same position? What makes it more or less fair for one swimmer is completely irrelevant because that invariably makes it less fair for another, which is also irrelevant.

For the record I have never seen a mixed gender event in the Dixie Zone meets I attend except the 400/500+ events. And, I've been chicked in many distance events where the woman had a "better" lane than me. That's not fair, or is it?

I've yet to see a meet in the NW that is run with genders separated. The only masters meet I've been to so far that has been separated was Nationals this spring. I'd rather swim mixed anyway...the women are better to look at than the men. :)

Chris Stevenson
May 24th, 2011, 08:05 PM
No, sorry, smoke for asthmatics is no small matter and it's not open to subjective belief. Driving 3mph over the speed limit on a largely deserted road is almost always safe -- as long as you're not texting away on the crackberry. Not similar effects at all IMO -- sandbagging is simply not akin to second hand smoke.

I chose 2nd-hand smoke partly because I knew it would be something you are strongly against. It is not too hard to find people who are pretty dismissive of the effects. Sound familiar?

In my professional life I have read quite a few epidemiological papers on the correlation of indoor and outdoor air quality and health effects -- including 2nd- and 3rd-hand smoke -- so I am certainly familiar with them. And despite your opinion, there is also a significant correlation with speed and traffic accidents, texting or no. +3mph absolutely increases risk, and some feel just as strongly about it as you do about smoke.

There are reasons sandbagging is against the rules. Just because one dismisses the effects as trivial doesn't mean the feeling is universal.

ElaineK
May 24th, 2011, 08:12 PM
Sandbagging is putting a time that is slower than you expect, normally a good bit slower, to improve your heat position. It is not putting a stretch time and not hitting it for whatever reason.

Yeah, 'Geek, I know.

That Guy
May 24th, 2011, 08:15 PM
I've yet to see a meet in the NW that is run with genders separated. The only masters meet I've been to so far that has been separated was Nationals this spring. I'd rather swim mixed anyway...the women are better to look at than the men. :)

NW LCM Zones last summer was separate for most events.

jaadams1
May 24th, 2011, 08:42 PM
NW LCM Zones last summer was separate for most events.

Well, I didn't go to that one because I was working... :)
OK, so there's one meet out of the many many to pick from.

Michael Heather
May 24th, 2011, 10:16 PM
The correct rule is: 104.5.5 A (11), not (10).

I sandbag when circumstances dictate.

Celestial
May 24th, 2011, 10:32 PM
I have a silly question - if you are sandbagging to get into an earlier heat so you can leave town earlier, why don't you just enter a different event? I know, you may be trying for "high point" or distance is really your best event - but if your itinerary requires your departure from the pool at a rigid time, wouldn't it just be safer to not enter that particular event? You sound like a pretty quick fella - you'd probably place quite high in whatever event you choose to swim!

Kurt Dickson
May 24th, 2011, 11:05 PM
I didn't expect you to.

'cuz you're so smart I suppose. Coach says I'm pretty smart though. Maybe while you are patting my head, you could enlighten me.

I do like Michael's sandbagging technique.

gdanner
May 24th, 2011, 11:29 PM
Strangely, kids don't seem to care what seed time someone enters with.

To some extent, I would agree that kids don't care as much. However, as gull pointed out previously, prelims/final format somewhat eliminates this problem in all major meets. I think a swimmer is dodging the competition by intentionally putting down a slow time.

On the other hand, all high level USA-S meets have swimmers who are fast enough to cruise prelims and make finals. This is widely considered to be an acceptable practice. Occasionally, swimmers will win from outside lanes. They may have deprived another swimmer from "seeing" them easily in the pool by swimming slower in prelims, but I don't know anyone that has a problem with it. Sometimes energy conservation is the purpose, other times the reasoning is not so clear.

I don't think swimmers should intentionally put down slow times, but I don't think the meet management should change times either. When all is said and done, as a swimmer, I don't let any of this stuff get to me.

Chris Stevenson
May 25th, 2011, 04:46 AM
Being dismissive of the effects of second hand smoke and the effects of sandbagging in a masters meet are in the same category of offense? Hmm ... And are you not just as dismissive of the opposing viewpoint?

Fine, you are stuck on the analogy thing. Sandbagging is cutting in line at the supermarket. Or taking up two parking spaces in a lot. Happy?

What is the opposing viewpoint, that it isn't a big deal? I've said as much. The effect is small, but not zero. Normally I don't think much on it, but here we have a thread. If there is ever a thread about people who double-park maybe I will express my annoyance with that practice too.

thewookiee
May 25th, 2011, 08:31 AM
Here is my question. If we are swimming in masters for ourselves, for our personal reasons(fun, health, friends, etc) why should it matter if someone sandbags an entry time in the first place?

From reading the discussions, it seems as though people are getting too serious about this topic. If we are each doing this for ourselves, why does it matter what time someone else puts down?

ALM
May 25th, 2011, 09:48 AM
Are we hard core with rigid qualifying times? It would seem not as 2 of my not-so-speedy family members were allowed to swim four events last year in Puerto Rico.

Because the 2010 Puerto Rico meet was anticipated to be smaller than a normal USMS Nationals, all competitors were allowed to swim four events without meeting the national qualifying times. I pulled out the entry information from the May, 2010 magazine and it states: "Competitors may enter up to four events without meeting the national qualifying time (NQT), or a maximum of six events if they meet the NQTs..."

aquageek
May 25th, 2011, 09:58 AM
I don't know if the Editor reads the forum but this topic sure smells like a Both Sides of the Lane Lines topic.

qbrain
May 25th, 2011, 10:11 AM
'cuz you're so smart I suppose. Coach says I'm pretty smart though. Maybe while you are patting my head, you could enlighten me.

I do like Michael's sandbagging technique.

I look forward to both patting you on the head and enlightening you, but no need to wait on the enlightenment.

The key points from this most excellent discussion you started

Sandbagging causes cancer
Sandbagging causes drastic delays in the meet
Sandbagging has no impact on the meet timelines
A sandbagger is immoral
Sandbagging is a divine right
Sandbaggers cause Chris to double park AND cut in line in front of malnourished orphans to get the last piece of bread at the soup kitchen
15 year old boys are more mature when it comes to the sandbagging topic than the entire USMS community combined
Sandbaggers are dishonest
Sandbagging can be easily justified
The sandbagging rule is easily circumvented
Not competing for a couple decades is no excuse for not entering with an accurate seed time
Auburn students and recruits abuse cows
Swimming faster than the heat makes the swimmer cheap and is rude to the rest of the heat
Strategic time submission is immoral
Consistent enforcement is impossible
The rule itself is illegitimate
All USMS meets should be prelims finals
Kurt Dickson is superior to Alabamians and Texans
Daisy Duke is more important than swimming
Kids parents would make great Masters swimmers, since they already obsess about seed times
The main reason to sandbag is to whip up on 83yo ladies
Future meets will be seeded randomly
Kurt doesn't understand the time submission process for USMS vs the time submission requirement of USAS
Geek is jealous of my Strawberry Shortcake lunchbox.


Your coach would shed a tear if they saw the idiocy you spawned by starting this thread.

aquageek
May 25th, 2011, 10:23 AM
I wish we had the LIKE button. That was funny, Q.

qbrain
May 25th, 2011, 10:24 AM
Here is my question. If we are swimming in masters for ourselves, for our personal reasons(fun, health, friends, etc) why should it matter if someone sandbags an entry time in the first place?

Way to strike to the heart of the problem. If you look at it from a purely selfish perspective, you are driven to create the ideal environment for you at the expense of others selfish reasons. This would only work if all people had compatible selfish reasons. It is selfish for people to feel entitled to an ideal competitive seeding and selfish for people to sandbag for whatever reason.

On the flip side, approaching the problem from a completely selfless perspective would eliminate the desire to compete.

pwb
May 25th, 2011, 10:35 AM
Way to strike to the heart of the problem. If you look at it from a purely selfish perspective, you are driven to create the ideal environment for you at the expense of others selfish reasons. This would only work if all people had compatible selfish reasons. It is selfish for people to feel entitled to an ideal competitive seeding and selfish for people to sandbag for whatever reason.

WWARD?

Who is John Galt?

Chris Stevenson
May 25th, 2011, 10:47 AM
Sandbaggers cause Chris to double park

In a handicapped spot. I may have run over a puppy to get it, too.

pwb
May 25th, 2011, 10:48 AM
In a handicapped spot. I may have run over a puppy to get it, too.While blowing smoke into the face of the handicapped asthmatic who was waiting to get into said parking spot.

pwb
May 25th, 2011, 10:52 AM
Your coach would shed a tear if they saw the idiocy you spawned by starting this thread.C'mon q ...


the idiocy spawned by this thread has been fun and amusing and way better than re-hashing tech suits (which, of course, we all know were handed down directly from the Creator and were banned by an evil cabal of satanists), AND
this is a dumb rule that Kurt highlighted (I'm serious on this one).

gull
May 25th, 2011, 10:52 AM
Sportsmanship: conduct (as fairness, respect for one's opponent, and graciousness in winning or losing) becoming to one participating in a sport.

When you sandbag your entry times, arguably you are disrespecting your fellow swimmers, both those in your heat (who entered with legitimate times but will lose by a substantial margin) and those in the faster heats (who will not have the opportunity to compete head to head with you).

Is it sinful? Of course not. Does it make you an evil person? Don't be ridiculous. But it is unsportsmanlike. Nothing more, nothing less.

Not enough rest between your events? Then enter different events. Not enough time to make it to the airport? Choose a different flight. Wanting to go for a PB in the 50? Enter a 50 and not the 500.

The argument that "it's only Masters swimming" begs the question: Then why are individuals sandbagging in the first place?

Editor
May 25th, 2011, 10:56 AM
Thank you Geek! The editor does read the Forums-- and it is always a good place to find disagreements. We actually did sandbagging in the May-June 2010 issue, and Rick Osterberg wrote against the practice.

At the time, we couldn't find anyone to write in favor of it, so we pulled together a list of reasons why swimmers do it, including quotes from Forum posts, and attributed them to "The Unknown Sandbagger." (For the photo, we used a USMS staffer in a brown paper bag with eyeholes cut out.)

As always, we welcome any ideas for BSLL topics. Topics can be informative, entertaining or both. They also do not necessarily have to be an argument. In the upcoming Jul-Aug 2011 issue, guest authors are presenting two different types of tapers: The drop (dead) taper and the gradual (three-week) taper.

Thanks to all the Forum members who have contributed so far to BSLL. And if you have not, please consider doing so-- readers of SWIMMER can learn a lot from you. Topics I would like to explore include the ideal pool water temperature for practice and the use of smilies on the Forums.

(:)Just kidding on that last one)

knelson
May 25th, 2011, 11:02 AM
Now that the bow tied one has appeared in a "Both Sides of the Lane Line" column he's obviously being held to a higher standard. :)

qbrain
May 25th, 2011, 11:05 AM
WWARD?

Who is John Galt?

I am not an expert on objectivism, but here is my take.

You have two groups, the sandbaggers and the competitors, both benefit from a new time, competitors benefit from increased competition, sandbaggers benefit from an unknown and create a cost of increased timeline and decreased competition.

The competitors will continue to compete as long as the benefit of the new time and the benefit of the competition is greater than the timeline cost, as long as there isn't an offer of better competition with the same or better timeline somewhere else.

The sandbaggers would regulate that sandbagging was legal while the competitors would let the desire to compete motivate accurate seed times.

Objectivism is anti-entitlement, anti-regulation, pro-capitalism, so it wouldn't match my purely selfish example.

Chris Stevenson
May 25th, 2011, 11:14 AM
Here is my question. If we are swimming in masters for ourselves, for our personal reasons(fun, health, friends, etc) why should it matter if [fill in the blank here]?

I've seen the "its only masters" and "you shouldn't care about others" argument thrown at lots of topics on these forums. I get quite a few emails every week about top ten issues. Surely it has been proven by now that some people care quite a bit about these things? That's not bad -- good IMO if it motivates one to become more healthy -- unless taken to an extreme.

As far as comments about spending valuable bandwidth on a "trivial" issue: heck, I think I've seen more vitriol and space devoted to font choices... :bolt:

qbrain
May 25th, 2011, 11:19 AM
C'mon q ...


the idiocy spawned by this thread has been fun and amusing and way better than re-hashing tech suits (which, of course, we all know were handed down directly from the Creator and were banned by an evil cabal of satanists), AND
this is a dumb rule that Kurt highlighted (I'm serious on this one).


I am pretty sure I am participating in the idiocy and a manner to perpetuate it, not to try to bring light to the truth of either side. My approach must be more stealthy than I thought if you are calling me out for taking it too seriously.

Serious: I disagree that the rule is dumb if it is used to help the swimmer when a obvious mistake was made or improve the meet timeline when it would otherwise be drastically affected. This is what I would guess the rule was intended to do. I have already stated that I don't believe meets with qualifying times would drastically be affected by random seeding, I agree Kurt was singled out because he is Kurt Dickson. That's what happens when you face is plastered all over a nationally distributed publication, you get special attention.

mrubacky
May 25th, 2011, 11:20 AM
I guess this doesn't fit "sandbagging" but I've seen an instance drastically effect a meet. At the NE SCM championship one person had entered times that were no where near his seed times and this person ended up in a faster heat when they should have been in the first heat. This slowed the meet way down and knocked it off the timeline. It messed me up a little for prep for the 800 since there was an extra 5+ minute wait while they finished.

I guess I was guilty of it last weekend, hence the evil looks from some swimmers. I swam the 100 and 200 breast for the first time to check them off and I had entered times from practice, but I went +15 seconds faster in both. It's not like I was trying to be in a slower heat, that's just what I thought I would swim. Oh well.

gull
May 25th, 2011, 11:23 AM
And I thought doing a 50 in a 500 was perfectly legit with the use of split requests? You're now saying that violates the anti-sandbagging rule?

From what I have seen, when someone enters the 500 intending to swim a fast 50, the entry time is not "legitimate", meaning that he or she can actually swim the 500 significantly faster. No rule against doing so. I just don't like the practice. But it doesn't keep me awake at night.

Chris Stevenson
May 25th, 2011, 11:26 AM
And I wonder if, for example, Jeff Erwin dodges Chris because he can/likes to swim his own race and doesn't want Chris to swim faster because of increased competition?

Please don't read into motivations. I doubt very much that Erwin "dodges" anyone and I don't know him well enough to ask why he generally under-predicts his time. I was just using him as one example and was not trying to point fingers.

Kurt Dickson
May 25th, 2011, 11:27 AM
q brain you are indeed Yoda-like. I agree with all your sentiments except the cancer part. It was a small sample, nonrandomized and an overwhelming number of the cancer patients lived next to power-lines.:)

As for the unsportmanship argument, I certainly can see that. But entering 60 minutes for a mile, actually doing that time, and forcing everybody else to watch it may be just as wrong. My point: I agree sandbagging is a crime, but sucking may be a bigger crime.

Triathlon is an inviting sport as evidenced by their meteoric rise in participation, but they don't invite everybody to their championships. Don't get me wrong, I like the inviting nature of our sport and championships, but which are we? Serious or inviting.

pwb
May 25th, 2011, 11:32 AM
Please don't read into motivations. I doubt very much that Erwin "dodges" anyone and I don't know him well enough to ask why he generally under-predicts his time. I was just using him as one example and was not trying to point fingers.I don't know Jeff at all, but he's as consistent with his pace as with his entry times -- both are faster than you'd like when you're racing him:)

Chris Stevenson
May 25th, 2011, 11:33 AM
From what I have seen, when someone enters the 500 intending to swim a fast 50, the entry time is not "legitimate", meaning that he or she can actually swim the 500 significantly faster. No rule against doing so. I just don't like the practice. But it doesn't keep me awake at night.

If I had to guess: from a timeline perspective, the meet director would prefer that you try to predict what you would actually DO with the split request event. If one defines sandbagging as "entering a time much different than you actually perform," then this wouldn't be sandbagging.

It would probably be courteous to tell others in your heat what you plan to do, and I know some who do just that. Richie Hughey did this in Atlanta when we were next to each other in the 100 back: informed others in the heat (at least, those near him) that he was actually going for a 50 split.

Chris Stevenson
May 25th, 2011, 11:36 AM
I agree sandbagging is a crime, but sucking may be a bigger crime.

Ouch.


which are we? Serious or inviting.

Seriously inviting?

qbrain
May 25th, 2011, 11:38 AM
q brain you are indeed Yoda-like.

How did you know what I looked like?


Triathlon is an inviting sport as evidenced by their meteoric rise in participation, but they don't invite everybody to their championships. Don't get me wrong, I like the inviting nature of our sport and championships, but which are we? Serious or inviting.

There is a good both sides of the lane line. Are Nationals the pinnacle of masters swimming, justifying qualifying times for every event, or an open meet to meet other USMS swimmers from across the country where qualifying times are only enforced for distance events because the timeline of the meet requires it?

gull
May 25th, 2011, 11:43 AM
If I had to guess: from a timeline perspective, the meet director would prefer that you try to predict what you would actually DO with the split request event. If one defines sandbagging as "entering a time much different than you actually perform," then this wouldn't be sandbagging.

It would probably be courteous to tell others in your heat what you plan to do, and I know some who do just that. Richie Hughey did this in Atlanta when we were next to each other in the 100 back: informed others in the heat (at least, those near him) that he was actually going for a 50 split.

The timeline issue is an administrative one. When I have trained for months to swim the 500, I don't want to see the guy in the adjacent lane blast a 50 and then swim down the remaining 450.

Chris Stevenson
May 25th, 2011, 11:47 AM
I guess the problem I see is that the "selfish" people wanting perfect competitive seeding do not view themselves as "selfish" because their position is enshrined in a rule.

I think it is simply that most sandbaggers view it as a victimless "crime" that is nobody else's business.

knelson
May 25th, 2011, 11:53 AM
I think I'd summarize my position with regard to sandbagging like this: it's OK to sandbag, but it's also OK for the meet director to call you out on it. If the meet director thinks your sandbagged time could adversely affect the flow of the meet then they should at least contact you and ask why you entered with this time.

Chris Stevenson
May 25th, 2011, 12:04 PM
Perhaps. But there seems to be some inconsistency in previously claiming that the effects of sandbagging are "small but not zero" and now saying that there is an actual "victim." Call me crazy and selfish, but victim does not seem to be the right word here.

I am not claiming anything in that post about how *I* view it, just how I think most sandbaggers view it or justify the practice. "Victimless crime" seems a pretty standard phrase and rolls off the tongue more easily than "victimless violation of the rules of competition."

gull
May 25th, 2011, 12:04 PM
Perhaps. But there seems to be some inconsistency in previously claiming that the effects of sandbagging are "small but not zero" and now saying that there is an actual "victim." Call me crazy and selfish, but victim does not seem to be the right word here.

It's not a crime. There are no victims. But some of us do consider sandbagging unsportsmanlike.

qbrain
May 25th, 2011, 12:10 PM
It's not a crime. There are no victims. But some of us do consider sandbagging unsportsmanlike.

Would you not be a victim of unsportsmanlike behavior then?

pmccoy
May 25th, 2011, 12:28 PM
For the events that are below a 400, do a timeline analysis of a random seed compared to circle seeding, throw in the actual seeding and timeline for good measure. I would love to see it published how many minutes could be saved.
I did this with the 2011 Auburn SCY meet because I'm curious about stuff like this. I started with the 1650 which is outside the parameters of your initial problem. But that's ok becasue I was educated in Alabama (which is slighly worse than being educated in Arizona) and ignoring problem parameters is something that should be expected of me. I did the 500 free and 50 free next and then realized that an entire meet was going to take a long time. I did heats by last name to simulate randomization.

For the 1650:
31 entrants, 4 heats, there were a couple no shows and scratches but those were weeded out. No real sandbaggers for this event.

Total swimming time: 1:49:09
Optimized heats: 1:47:26
Sandbagging waste: 1:43
"Randomized" heats: 2:05:38
Seeding efficiency: 16:29

For the 500:
70 Entrants, 9 Heats, there were a couple sandbaggers in this one but none that should have been in the final heat.

Total swimming time: 1:15:04
Optimized heats: 1:09:30
Sandbagging waste: 5:33
"Randomized" heats: 1:18:59
Seeding efficiency: 3:55

Bonus - there were a bunch of "no starts" in this event
Optimized heats (no NS): 1:02:41
NS Waste + Sandbag waste: 12:22

For the 50 Free
144 entrants, 18 heats, some deliberate sandbagging going on here but there were enough that most of the sandbaggers all had their own heat.

Total swimming time: 646s
Optimized heats: 597s
Sandbagging waste: 48s
"Randomized" heats: 883s
Seeding efficiency: 237s
Optimized heats (no NS): 564s
NS Waste + Sandbag waste: 81s

I imagine that with more people, sandbagging will have a bigger impact. It also appears that sandbagging and inaccurate seeds have a larger impact on longer events. It should be pretty obvious from this as to why we aren't seeded randomly.

If you want to see a real meet timewaster, take a look at this idiot: http://youtu.be/_AkjaVpw7do

The real lesson here is that if we make it easier on the nice people that put together the meets (by not sandbagging, using inaccurate seeds, or only signing up for events were are actually goign to swim), we all get to go socialize and drink beer sooner. :chug:

Allen Stark
May 25th, 2011, 12:35 PM
Like most people,I only care about sandbagging when it affects me.I have a good friend who routinely enters times slower than I expect him to swim.He always has a good reason(sore knee,recent illness,etc.)Then he almost always swims the time I predicted.One year in the 200 BR SCM he had the fastest time in the nation and I was .03 sec slower.We swam at the same meet,but he swam 2 heats earlier.(I'm not saying I'd have gone faster head to head,I probably would have taken it out too hard or not hard enough.)
I think there does need to be more emphasis on following the guideline about not putting the fastest people in an age group/gender in outside lanes.As I get older this becomes more important to me.

stillwater
May 25th, 2011, 12:42 PM
sandbagging, which is technically illegal

I guess if you throw in "technically" it doesn't make it as illegal.

Second hand smoke is technically illegal too.


Call me crazy and selfish,

Amen.

aquageek
May 25th, 2011, 12:47 PM
It's not all black and white.

Actually, part of it is black and white. There is no arguing that when you sandbag you are asking everyone else in your event to swim by your wishes. You cannot control how others feel about it, nor whether they are ok with it. If I get in a heat where the person next to me sandbags, for whatever legit or illegit reason, I am annoyed because that means I won't be racing the person that should have been beside me. And, if I'm in lane 1 or 8 (where I seem to reside these days) I get no racing at all.

aquageek
May 25th, 2011, 01:01 PM
And the same thing happens when someone uses a perfectly legal black and white split request.

One thing puzzles me. Can no one swim there own race?

Beat me. But, it's not a race if you have no one to race. Then again, sandbaggers are typically afraid of racing, hence the sandbagging.

I don't claim to be an innocent in this, nor a victim. I did participate in a group sandbag last Fall so that six of us could all be in the same heat of the 1650 and we could race. We put fast times that we felt would guarantee us all be in the same heat. Maybe that was an anti-sandbag.

Listen, sandbag all you want, convince yourself and others it is awesome. Just be mindful that it impacts others, to varying degrees. I think sandbagging is poor sportsmanship, you don't. We don't agree, which is fine.

thewookiee
May 25th, 2011, 01:11 PM
One thing puzzles me. Can no one swim there own race?

:applaud: Thank You. That's why I don't get why people care so much about what others do. "X wore this suit" "A listed this as their entry time" "I am stuck in this/that lane" "B didn't show-up to the race, screwed my game plan" "G takes this supplement, F takes that supplement"

Why not just control the one person that we can control, ourselves? If a person wants to sandbag, fine by me. I don't really notice too many people anyway when I swim.

Chris Stevenson
May 25th, 2011, 01:14 PM
One thing puzzles me. Can no one swim their own race?

Well, sure.

But one attraction of an event like nationals is to compete against people you don't normally see in meets. Since there is an insistence that you be seeded only within your own age group for most races, that cuts down the pool of potential competitors. Sandbagging can reduce it further.

qbrain
May 25th, 2011, 01:18 PM
Why not just control the one person that we can control, ourselves?

Let's not get carried away Wookie, self control is about as common as common sense.

aquageek
May 25th, 2011, 01:26 PM
Let's not get carried away Wookie, self control is about as common as common sense.

They should put this on a big sign at the entrance to Disney, and in front of every buffet line the world over.

thewookiee
May 25th, 2011, 01:38 PM
Let's not get carried away Wookie, self control is about as common as common sense.

In otherwords, we are going to continue to worry about Chris drinking diet cokes before a race, fearing he might get an advantage from the extra caffeine. Dang, maybe one day I will have a time faster than his backstroke.

thewookiee
May 25th, 2011, 01:40 PM
They should put this on a big sign at the entrance to Disney, and in front of every buffet line the world over.

And at every state line in the South.

SwimStud
May 25th, 2011, 01:56 PM
Y'know, I don't mind but it's getting old looking at the psyche sheets and thinking "Hmm I can place here." Then you see the results and you're 10th.

I've gone as far as reviewing my age group competitors post meet to see how the have swum in the last few meets. I just giggle when I see Jonny X swims the 50 BR in :31 6 of 7 times and entered at :33.5.

With the exception of certain meets where the Meet Manager is actively watching the entries. I may be economical with the truth of my times. Fed up with being lane 3 or 4 and a good body length behind at the wall.
As Geek said once or twice it's a new PB or a misjudged guess and I can handle that but I do look up results and have vowed to nix the SB strategists by SB'ing myself into a more correct heat.

I feel I train too hard to hard to be eating the kick wash of a sandbagger who wants lean water. It isn't fair.

That said, Leslie's and Allen's points about fastest in age group or sex should be considered when seeding so that they don't get end lanes against much younger folks or opposite sex seems reasonable.
Fastest woman should be in center lanes of final heat with fastest guy (or the penultimate heat etc) and work backwards alternating sexes--it must be doable by computer.

:2cents:

orca1946
May 25th, 2011, 03:59 PM
Aside from personal bests in meets, we ALL swim in lanes with lots of surf from our team mates in practice all season.

pwb
May 25th, 2011, 05:03 PM
One thing puzzles me. Can no one swim there own race?Yes, we can. However, I find I generally swim faster when I'm racing someone. Maybe I'm obsessively Type A, but my competitors make me better and I want to race them. If competition didn't matter and racing people didn't matter, we'd all do solo time trials. Yeah, it'd be a long and boring meet, but then we'd all have the middle lane, clean water, plenty of rest between events and no need for entry times.

fmracing
May 25th, 2011, 05:13 PM
No we ALL do not.

+1 I have my own lane... no surf.

Chris Stevenson
May 25th, 2011, 05:17 PM
I have vowed to nix the SB strategists by SB'ing myself into a more correct heat.

Now it all becomes clear: it has evolved into a sandbagging arms race!!!

More seriously (and I'm not picking on you, Stud), doesn't all this strategizing about sandbagging make your head hurt? Why does it have to be this complicated? What on earth is so hard about entering approximately the time you expect to do? (Granted, it may be hard to predict if you haven't competed for a long time or you've been injured or whatever.)

There was a thread recently (can't easily look it up now, I'm on a portable device) about how it seems that, as we get older, conditions need to be perfect to have a good swim.

I find it is exactly the opposite, with age has come just a little bit of wisdom to realize that things are very rarely perfect and that, in fact, I have done plenty of surprisingly good swims under adverse conditions: not much rest between events, poor night's sleep, slightly sick, outside lane, pool is not world-class, etc etc.

So my advice, for what it is worth: just enter the time you expect to do -- or maybe a reasonable goal time (I like this strategy myself: seeing the time in the psych sheets gives me something to shoot for) -- and stop sweating all these maddening details. Those things hold you back only to the extent that you believe they do.

(And now I expect I might hear from all those who believe conditions are always great for me: middle lanes, always clear water, etc etc. It isn't true.)

pwb
May 25th, 2011, 05:38 PM
...conditions are always great for me...This needs to be a mantra we all repeat to ourselves. I heard a great quote yesterday on NPR from a woman, "No whining on the yacht." Yeah, we all don't have yachts* and it's certainly not champagne, caviar and carefree life, but all of us on these forums are fortunate to have the time, health, energy and financial resources to be able to *at least* train swimming as Masters (many of us also to compete) ... so life's already pretty good for us compared to the vast majority of humanity.

Quit whining, enter whatever time you want, but just race and enjoy the fact you can race.

* if anyone does have a yacht, though, I'd like to try it out to see if being on one really does reduce whining :)

aquageek
May 25th, 2011, 05:46 PM
This needs to be a mantra we all repeat to ourselves. I heard a great quote yesterday on NPR from a woman, "No whining on the yacht." Yeah, we all don't have yachts* and it's certainly not champagne, caviar and carefree life, but all of us on these forums are fortunate to have the time, health, energy and financial resources to be able to *at least* train swimming as Masters (many of us also to compete) ... so life's already pretty good for us compared to the vast majority of humanity.

Quit whining, enter whatever time you want, but just race and enjoy the fact you can race.

* if anyone does have a yacht, though, I'd like to try it out to see if being on one really does reduce whining :)

This is the post of the decade. Every time I hear some pointless and self serving whining about swimming I just ask "what could be better?" Hot water, boo hoo. Noodlers, boo hoo. Order of events, boo hoo.

I attended a meet recently where someone complained because they started 18 SECONDS late. She was watching the clock. Good grief, enough already.

Chris Stevenson
May 25th, 2011, 06:01 PM
I'm curious, though, when's the last time you swam in lanes 1 or 8? Do you really think that lane placement makes no difference?

I don't know because I honestly don't pay attention to it. For sure in relays all the time. Proly at senior champs too. The only thing I dislike about the outside lanes is that I can't see people on the other side. No, I don't swim any slower in them.

Herb
May 25th, 2011, 06:53 PM
What is the difference between entering an inflated seed time vs. an "NT". It seems an NT is the most extreme case of sandbagging yet it is somehow viewed as more legitimate?

aquageek
May 25th, 2011, 06:54 PM
I'm curious, though, when's the last time you swam in lanes 1 or 8? Do you really think that lane placement makes no difference? I agree that one can elevate the importance of these things and make it psychologically more difficult. But things like lane placement, quality of pool, mixed gender heats, tech suits, etc. can potentially make a difference; it seems somewhat naive to deny that.

Hold up, I though anti-sandbaggers were victims. Now I see that sandbaggers are victims of aquatic injustice. Very confusing, all these victims.

I thought conditions in Mesa were fantastic. It was slightly distracting the beautiful blue skies and incredibly clear water but I put those aside and swam anyway.

pwb
May 25th, 2011, 07:06 PM
But since you D and mid-D types are so much more emotionally stable, you can have all the outside lanes you want!

... maybe because we're not so mean ....


...COULD be a great sprinter but isn't mean enough...

aquageek
May 25th, 2011, 07:51 PM
IIt's easy to downplay the little things. But little things sometimes matter. Especially for sprinters. But since you D and mid-D types are so much more emotionally stable, you can have all the outside lanes you want!

Well, little things matter to everyone. All I do is train the little things because I sure don't want to repeat a little thing 9 thousand times in a long race.

I hate the outside lanes but that's part of the deal with racing. No need to dwell on it. You can't put the fix in on every race.

Bobinator
May 25th, 2011, 09:17 PM
The anti-sandbag law:
"if a swimmer enters an event with a time significantly slower or faster than that swimmer's recorded time in the past two years, the meet director may, after a discussion with the swimmer, change the seeded time to a realistic time" (104.5.5.A(10)).

Concerning my Auburn nationals entry, I confess, when faced with a 7 hour 2 stop flight and 3:45 nonstop at an earlier time, I did what any warm-blooded middle-aged American swimmer with low self-esteem would do--sandbag my entry so I could catch the earlier flight, thus diminishing the possible time spent sitting next to a 400 pound Alabama slammer with sleep apnea wearing nothing but overalls and body odor. Of course, I was caught in my bold fabrication and my time was "fixed."

USMS seems to have an identity problem. Are we hard core with rigid qualifying times? It would seem not as 2 of my not-so-speedy family members were allowed to swim four events last year in Puerto Rico. If we are not hard core, why does anybody care that I sandbag? More to the point, why can one person enter a crappy time and another cannot? Just wondering.:)

I really don't care what the rule is concerning sandbagging. I do think all swimmers should be treated equally as far as enforcement of the rule. In other words I think you were being used as an example.
If usms really wants everyone seeded by their best times they should somehow draw swimmers times from their data base. It seems unfair that well known "fast" swimmers are held to the rule while slower "unknown" swimmers can get away with sandbagging. just my :2cents:

jaadams1
May 25th, 2011, 09:28 PM
I really don't care what the rule is concerning sandbagging. I do think all swimmers should be treated equally as far as enforcement of the rule. In other words I think you were being used as an example.
If usms really wants everyone seeded by their best times they should somehow draw swimmers times from their data base. It seems unfair that well known "fast" swimmers are held to the rule while slower "unknown" swimmers can get away with sandbagging. just my :2cents:

I have a few times chosen to swim another stroke (fly), in a freestyle event, and in these cases, I don't want to be seeded with my fastest freestyle times. I have entered my fly times, and then am seeded with the freestylers of the comparable speed. It actually makes for good competition. I've done it twice so far in a 200 and a 500, and plan on doing it again as long as I have the opportunities to do so.

SwimStud
May 25th, 2011, 09:42 PM
I have to admit I have reverse sandbagged a few times and been wise to do so as I've gone out and got that time.

The sandbag arms race is funny...I'm not that bad but I have noted a couple of zones swimmers who seem to always be seeded slower yet beat me...so next Zones I will be gathering my War Cabinet to devise the perfect entry time to outfox them...and if they still beat me I'll give up lol

psyncw
May 25th, 2011, 09:47 PM
I've gone through the thread but could not find the answer to this question- how does sandbagging guarantee or even make it more likely that you'll have a better lane placement?

gdanner
May 25th, 2011, 09:56 PM
I've gone through the thread but could not find the answer to this question- how does sandbagging guarantee or even make it more likely that you'll have a better lane placement?

Most events don't have a multiple of 6, 8, or 10 swimmers in an event. So if you put in a fake time and wind up in the first heat, you probably won't be in an outside lane.

jaadams1
May 25th, 2011, 09:57 PM
I've gone through the thread but could not find the answer to this question- how does sandbagging guarantee or even make it more likely that you'll have a better lane placement?

In my LMSC, most of the meets only have 1 heat, or possibly 2 to 3 in the shorter races. So even if I sandbagged, I'd still be in the fast heat, unless I went complete super-sandbag so I could race the 78 year old females, but that's not fair to them.

pwb
May 25th, 2011, 10:08 PM
...unless I went complete super-sandbag so I could race the 78 year old females, but that's not fair to them.... c'mon, admit it, you're afraid of being chicked by them.

jaadams1
May 25th, 2011, 10:11 PM
... c'mon, admit it, you're afraid of being chicked by them.

That is funny...but yes I'm afraid of that. It could happen since one of them always seems to be in the 200 fly or 400 IM with me at the meets.

Chris Stevenson
May 25th, 2011, 10:35 PM
I've gone through the thread but could not find the answer to this question- how does sandbagging guarantee or even make it more likely that you'll have a better lane placement?

Ssshhh! You might ruin the sprinter voodoo mojo.

Bobinator
May 25th, 2011, 11:25 PM
I have a few times chosen to swim another stroke (fly), in a freestyle event, and in these cases, I don't want to be seeded with my fastest freestyle times. I have entered my fly times, and then am seeded with the freestylers of the comparable speed. It actually makes for good competition. I've done it twice so far in a 200 and a 500, and plan on doing it again as long as I have the opportunities to do so.

That sounds fair to me. I've been beat many times in freestyle by a butterflyer.

ElaineK
May 26th, 2011, 12:46 AM
and the use of smilies on the Forums.


:thewave::bliss: :ohyeah: That Guy will back me up on this one; right, That Guy? :D What do ya say? Us against 'Geek and Wookiee??? :duel:

fmracing
May 26th, 2011, 08:21 AM
Not sure, but I may be the only sprinter that commented. .

You're not alone in this thread ;)

I'll never concede a win to someone in any lane. It's not in my wiring to do so. I, in fact, get more pumped up when I'm in an outside lane. Its way more fun smoking the heat from the outside and being all underdog-esque. :) Happens to me alot more in USAS meets it would seem just because of the volume of entries. I always end up center lanes in masters meets.

2trax4me
May 26th, 2011, 08:45 AM
My fondest memories of when I was an outside burner and finished first or second, especially when it was a prelim/final meet. Nothing like squeezing into the final heat then have the guys in the middle go "how did I get 3rd"? Like Chris the only thing I don't like about being in the outside is that it is hard to see the other side of the pool.

As for sandbagging, its not for me. I want to know what everyone is looking at swimming in the meet and I want to have a goal for myself on paper. And if someone does sandbag to get a little more rest for their next event yes it can be hurting other competitors, namely me. If we are both doing the same 2 events and for swim 1 he sandbags slow then swim 2 is "optimistic" then he has essentially stolen extra recovery time. I will still swim my own race and take it is it comes but that is poor sportsmanship IMO.

That Guy
May 26th, 2011, 10:06 AM
That Guy will back me up on this one; right, That Guy?
:chug: Well of course, but... :bouncing:

What do ya say? Us against 'Geek and Wookiee???
:dunno: ...Why? :bighug:

Apropos of nothing, I'd like to note that in this thread, Chris Stevenson established himself as a force to be reckoned with in the trolling department. :agree:

fmracing
May 26th, 2011, 10:08 AM
That's a good attitude, and works much of the time.

However, I'm sure you can see my earlier point that in a mixed gender meet I might prefer not to be swimming in an outside lane next to you? Aren't you just a tad bigger than me? :) Can it be sportsmanlike if every mixed gender meet the fastest men get the center lanes and the fastest women get the outside lanes and the wake?

Bottom line for me is that I don't care that much about what times other people enter. Agree with Wookiee -- worry about yourself not others. And it doesn't seem like most of the outspoken anti-sandbaggers here are even effected by it very often.

Indeed bigger, probably double you. I doubt you'd notice much being next to me though. I don't waste energy creating a wake, it all goes towards forward speed instead :angel: Certainly OTHER large flailing wake prone people might mess you up though. This is a better argument for seperating genders by heats. I've always wondered why every other competition (usas, collegiate, high school) ALWAYS keeps genders seperate yet masters keeps heats mixed for most if not all competitions.... but that is moving towards another topic.

Herb
May 26th, 2011, 06:51 PM
Can it be sportsmanlike if every mixed gender meet the fastest men get the center lanes and the fastest women get the outside lanes and the wake?


For this to be true it would seem every mixed gender event would have to have exactly six men seeded faster than the fastest woman (assuming 8 lanes). While I doubt this is possibly true, a solution could be to do a reverse sandbag and turn in a seed time that you know is lower than everyone else.

It seems the only individuals that are guaranteed the center lane are the fastest males in the whole event. I suppose I can see your point that the fastest women should be afforded the same opportunity. But you could extend it further - What if there is a 65 year old man seeded the same as the fastest woman and is actually the fastest person at the meet for his age group. Why should he be discriminated against and be put in an outside lane? How about a 90 year-old that is trying to break a national record and has to swim in heat one and get blown away by a bunch of sandbaggers that wanted clear water, more rest before the next event, or just wanted to leave early?

ElaineK
May 26th, 2011, 07:16 PM
:chug: Well of course, but... :bouncing:

:dunno: ...Why? :bighug:


For the Both Sides of the Lane Lines column! Of course, she was just kidding about that, and, I have never seen a team against a team, but, just saying... Who would make a better pro-Smilie team than us? :banana:

That Guy
May 26th, 2011, 07:35 PM
For the Both Sides of the Lane Lines column! Of course, she was just kidding about that, and, I have never seen a team against a team, but, just saying... Who would make a better pro-Smilie team than us? :banana:

I guess I just wasn't feeling very argumentative this morning.:thewave:

Speedo
May 26th, 2011, 09:27 PM
I don't attend all that many myself, but one of my fav SCM meets of the year is mixed.Albatross is one of my favorite meets as well, if not my favorite. You seem to to reasonably well there though. I think what comes around goes around though- Jeff should put you between Clay and Chris in the backstrokes next time.:waiting:

That Guy
May 26th, 2011, 10:12 PM
I was in the shallow end in the fastest heat between 2 muscley guys in the 50 back last time. What more do you want? I think that is where you now belong in the backstroke events!

I love the meet because it is the only meet in the known universe that doesn't start until 2:00 pm!

At larger meets, I don't see anything wrong with putting top age group seeds in the non-gutter lanes. But at small meets, there aren't enough entries in each age group for this to work. I'm often the only swimmer in my age group in my events. (I don't do many 50's...:)) In the 100 SCM breaststroke I described earlier in the thread, I would have been pleased to be in lane 6 of the fastest heat rather than lane 3 of the preceding heat.

Oh BTW here's a meet that starts even later: http://www.swimphone.com/mobile/meets/event_order.cfm?smid=2806

quicksilver
May 26th, 2011, 10:46 PM
As the first post mentioned, the whole point of seeding according to times is to keep the meet moving along. And it's primarily the distance events that require the most adherence to relevant seed times. Five minutes here and there during something like the 1,000 can really throw the time-line off.

Regarding sand bagging to gain an advantageous lane...that's a total crap shoot. What's the probability that it will result in the supposed coveted middle lanes?

JimRude
May 26th, 2011, 11:10 PM
I apparently live on the wrong side of the country in terms of swim meets! That looks awesome.

I TOLD you to come out for this meet...:bitching:

Peter Cruise
May 27th, 2011, 08:56 AM
A Forums topic with differing views and many posts, yet no one is throttling each other? This is cited by the Ancient Mayans as a sign presaging the End of Days (the Divine Rupture will take only swimmers who are pure of heart and deed).

Actually the Mayans knew of sandbaggers and despised them: their versions were those prospective human sacrifices who, reluctant to be in the 'spotlight' of being eviscerated on the altar would take poison to avoid the horrific pain (seeking clear water) caused by dedicated priests creating smilies with their intestines.

I have polled me, myself and I: sandbagging when done by others is vile, unsportsmanlike, impure, annoying and weak- but when done by yours truly it is convenient, non-disruptive and not worthy of sanction.

ALM
May 27th, 2011, 08:33 PM
Leslie,

We had a fair number of Saturday night meets in Kansas City. Our meets were small and usually only ran 2-3 hours. We'd start at 5 or 6pm, finish around 8pm, then all go out to a restaurant afterward!

Spock
May 28th, 2011, 01:50 AM
In Mesa, I was in the fastest heat for my events along with my usual friends and competitors. It's fun to race head-to-head against the best people in the final heat, where on any given day any of us could pull out a win.

A couple of the sprint events, however, were won overall by someone in the second-to-last heat. This seemed unusual. Maybe they had the swim of their lives and dropped a second+ in the 50. And maybe they sandbagged an entry time. Who am I to say?

But to address the original post, I think it's questionable sportsmanship to enter a slow time purely to get clean water ... especially at big meets.

Speedo
May 28th, 2011, 09:35 AM
A couple of the sprint events, however, were won overall by someone in the second-to-last heat. This seemed unusual. Maybe they had the swim of their lives and dropped a second+ in the 50. And maybe they sandbagged an entry time. Who am I to say?I saw that in more than one event as well. I think a lot of folks used seed times from previous years where they used a bodysuit (e.g Atlanta). Slower swims from the veterans in the champ heat combined with a fast newcomer seeded in a slower heat could be the reason for this. When I used bodysuit times for seeding and swam in a jammer in Atlanta, I got creamed in the championship heats. Hopefully by next year this aspect will be sorted out.

Chris Stevenson
May 28th, 2011, 11:34 AM
I think a lot of folks used seed times from previous years where they used a bodysuit (e.g Atlanta).

Also, many people may have sandbagged due to an overestimation of the suit effect. Hadn't really thought about that.

Allen Stark
May 28th, 2011, 01:46 PM
Also, many people may have sandbagged due to an overestimation of the suit effect. Hadn't really thought about that.

I don't think that is sandbagging.If you think that you will go slower than you do that is just an honest mistake.In sandbagging you know you will swim faster than your entry time.

Chris Stevenson
May 28th, 2011, 02:31 PM
I don't think that is sandbagging.If you think that you will go slower than you do that is just an honest mistake.In sandbagging you know you will swim faster than your entry time.

Agreed. Or it is unintentional sandbagging that ppl might mistake for the real thing.

I think some ppl have surprised themselves with how fast they could go without the suits.

jaadams1
May 28th, 2011, 05:07 PM
I like how many of the USA-S meets require that the swimmers be entered at their best time, whether this be from a regular meet, or their time from their Jr. National meet last year, etc.
I've been entering myself with my best times as well in the USA-S meets, and coming close or beating them in the meet. Even in Masters meets I enter my best times. At Mesa, I reverse sandbagged, and entered times that were 1-2 seconds per 100 faster than my best times with anticipation of swimming those times. Then when I swam the times, the whole rest of my heat was a mile ahead of me. It would have been better just to enter my actual best time from the past year.
I think it is just best to enter your best time (of at least the past year) and swim where you get seeded.
No one will care (except maybe yourself) if you swim 4 seconds slower than your seed time...it's Masters swimming after all. Have fun!

pwolf66
May 28th, 2011, 05:51 PM
Folks,

These comments are about knowingly entering a slower (or even faster) time that you know you will swim for an event. And are directed more towards doing this in large meets such as Nationals or NE champs, etc. Local meets usually have so much variance normally per heat and so few heats in total that an intentionally false time will not have much affect on the timeline.


I'm sorry but asking a meet director, ref, governing body, your priest, the paperboy or your pet squirrel to enforce making sure swimmers enter with a realistic seed time is just nannyism. If everyone was as honest as possible there would be no need for enforcement. But there needs to be some attempt at realistic entry times. You can't compare a swim meet with multiple events and multiple heats to any other sporting event because a swim meet is one of the few places (track is another) that will have 10s to multiple 100s of individual heats. If a meet has 400 heats and each heat on average takes 10 seconds longer due to poor seeding (and one sandbagged entry for each event can skew every heat of the entire event) that's 4000 seconds or over an hour added to the timeline.


Yes, we know that training for meet X and then finding out you're in a sucky lane ain't fair. Well, if that's your lane because everyone seeded to the best of thier knowledge, then it's as fair as it's gonna get.

If you don't like a meet format, petition to get it changed, or don't go, or go and deal with it or run your own meet.

If you have logistical issues with a meet, petition the meed director for an exception, or alter your plans, or change your events, or don't go, or keep your plans and risk not swimming your event, or start running a meet that can support your logistical requirements.

It comes down to this, competing in any swim meet is a privledge not a right. No one is required to run meets and there is nothing in the Constitution about folks having opportunites to swim in meets. If we cannot be considerate to our fellow competitors by doing our best to enter a meet with as accurate a time as possible (note: AS POSSIBLE, if you have never swam that event, so be it, but maybe time trialing in practice?) for the circumstances (split requests should never be entered with a swimmer's typical time, pad it some to reflect the cool down and let the meet director know your intention when entereing, also having the ref announce your intention before the heat starts would be the polite thing to do), then why bother entering?


I used to be indifferent towards sandbagging in general (but still gave individuals a hard time about it) but as I have been involved in setting up and running meets, sandbagging sucks as it blows up timelines past projections.

psyncw
May 28th, 2011, 08:59 PM
A reason I don't like entering best times is that not only do I feel bad if I don't do that seed time, I feel guilty for displacing someone else who swam better and could have had a better lane placement had I been less optimistic with my seed time.

ElaineK
May 28th, 2011, 09:36 PM
A reason I don't like entering best times is that not only do I feel bad if I don't do that seed time, I feel guilty for displacing someone else who swam better and could have had a better lane placement had I been less optimistic with my seed time.

I hear ya! Entering my best times at Mesa was a big mistake, exactly for the reasons you mentioned. :badday:

stillwater
May 29th, 2011, 12:56 AM
For me, the question is a moral one. Sandbagging is is wrong. It is breaking the rules to gain an advantage.

Yes, it isn't the worst thing a swimmer could do, but it does violate the spirit of a shared community.

Michael Heather
May 30th, 2011, 08:57 PM
For me, the question is a moral one. Sandbagging is is wrong. It is breaking the rules to gain an advantage.

Yes, it isn't the worst thing a swimmer could do, but it does violate the spirit of a shared community.


Wow. Wound kinda tight there, mister.


The rules are not being broken and it is a personal choice if someone decides to enter extra slow times. You don't have to like it, but it isn't the end of society, either.

notsofast
May 30th, 2011, 10:43 PM
Wow. Wound kinda tight there, mister.


The rules are not being broken and it is a personal choice if someone decides to enter extra slow times. You don't have to like it, but it isn't the end of society, either.
Actually, I gather it is against the rules, and the point of the debate is that some believe that it should not be, while still others believe it should not be selectively enforced.
But I don't know, as I have never swum in a meet. I will note that knowing there's a strong likelihood that one or two people in my heat would have sandbagged their times and would humiliate me with their speed makes me less likely to ever enter a meet.

Michael Heather
May 30th, 2011, 10:56 PM
The language of the rule is quoted on the first post. It applies only to national championships, where "no time" entries are not accepted.

Kurt Dickson
May 31st, 2011, 12:08 AM
For me, the question is a moral one. Sandbagging is is wrong. It is breaking the rules to gain an advantage.

Yes, it isn't the worst thing a swimmer could do, but it does violate the spirit of a shared community.

Sandbagging may diminish the individual but as far as affecting the community, I am still not buying it.

If somehow a person in the first heat expected to win and a sandbagger dashed his hopes, then life has not kicked this gentleman in the teeth enough (or perhaps he has taken too many blows to the head).

As far as clear water goes, the serious sandbagger attempts this only on longer events like the 500, 1000 or mile where this is not a factor.

Sandbagging may affect the timeline a few minutes but swimming slowly affects it much more. The 2 minutes people are delayed getting to the Rustler steakhouse do not even come close to paying me back for the seemingly endless eternity of sluggish miles I have endured in the past patiently waiting for my turn.

See y'all in Auburn...and please don't enter the 400...and no spitting.:)

gull
May 31st, 2011, 05:43 AM
Wow. Wound kinda tight there, mister.

And the sandbaggers are not?

thewookiee
May 31st, 2011, 07:54 AM
If someone sandbags a time, is it really worth all this fuss?

gull
May 31st, 2011, 08:38 AM
If someone sandbags a time, is it really worth all this fuss?

When you consider the "fuss" involved in training and preparing for meets, I would say the answer is yes.

thewookiee
May 31st, 2011, 08:49 AM
When you consider the "fuss" involved in training and preparing for meets, I would say the answer is yes.

I think if you are getting your speedo in a wad for nothing. You can't control how fast someone next to you swims, so why worry about the time they enter? There will always be someone that swims faster and slower in races, regardless of their seed times. Nothing can be done about that by you in another lane.

gull
May 31st, 2011, 09:08 AM
I think you are getting your speedo in a wad for nothing. You can't control how fast someone next to you swims, so why worry about the time they enter? There will always be someone that swims faster and slower in races, regardless of their seed times. Nothing can be done about that by you in another lane.

You are simply restating the obvious. But platitudes like "swim your own race" or "it's only Masters" do not alter the fact that sandbagging (ie intentionally entering a slow seed time) is unsportsmanlike. If sportsmanship does not matter to you, then feel free to ignore this thread.

Kurt Dickson
May 31st, 2011, 09:22 AM
You are simply restating the obvious. But platitudes like "swim your own race" or "it's only Masters" do not alter the fact that sandbagging (ie intentionally entering a slow seed time) is unsportsmanlike. If sportsmanship does not matter to you, then feel free to ignore this thread.

Which is more unsportsmanlike: a guy who is on the slow side knowing the 3 free event rule avoids the obvious "temptation" of entering say 50s or 100s and enters and completes a mile in close to an hour, a 400 IM in 20 plus minutes, and some other event in an inordinate amount of time or say some hypothetical guy who enters a bogus time for a 400 so he can catch the only nonstop out of Birmingham to surprise his mommy for her 85th birthday?

C'mon man have a heart...it's nana we're talking about here.

Chris Stevenson
May 31st, 2011, 09:50 AM
Which is more unsportsmanlike: a guy who is on the slow side knowing the 3 free event rule avoids the obvious "temptation" of entering say 50s or 100s and enters and completes a mile in close to an hour, a 400 IM in 20 plus minutes, and some other event in an inordinate amount of time or say some hypothetical guy who enters a bogus time for a 400 so he can catch the only nonstop out of Birmingham to surprise his mommy for her 85th birthday?

C'mon man have a heart...it's nana we're talking about here.

Being a slow swimmer is unsportsmanlike? Huh. Perhaps USA-S meets would be more to your liking.

As far as your mom, that's sweet. Why did you enter the 400 if it is so important to you? Sounds like you are trying to have your cake and eat it too. (Or maybe that's your mom's cake...)

gull
May 31st, 2011, 10:06 AM
Which is more unsportsmanlike: a guy who is on the slow side knowing the 3 free event rule avoids the obvious "temptation" of entering say 50s or 100s and enters and completes a mile in close to an hour, a 400 IM in 20 plus minutes, and some other event in an inordinate amount of time or say some hypothetical guy who enters a bogus time for a 400 so he can catch the only nonstop out of Birmingham to surprise his mommy for her 85th birthday?

C'mon man have a heart...it's nana we're talking about here.

I skipped Mesa because my daughter's birthday fell on that weekend.

And I would say it is more unsportsmanlike to call out the slower swimmers as you are doing than to sandbag.

BTW my dad (who will be 90 in October) completes the mile in about fifty minutes. He actually worries about being "too slow" to swim in meets, and I reassure him that he is not.

Chris Stevenson
May 31st, 2011, 10:12 AM
Sandbagging may diminish the individual but as far as affecting the community, I am still not buying it.

See, that's the thing about "community." Your opinion is not the only one.

thewookiee
May 31st, 2011, 10:22 AM
You are simply restating the obvious. But platitudes like "swim your own race" or "it's only Masters" do not alter the fact that sandbagging (ie intentionally entering a slow seed time) is unsportsmanlike. If sportsmanship does not matter to you, then feel free to ignore this thread.


Thanks for the advice on ignoring the thread. I probably will ignore it though. Why should it matter what time someone else enters? If you going to meets for your pleasure, to see how your training is paying off, then why worry about what someone else is doing at the meet?

thewookiee
May 31st, 2011, 10:56 AM
Sometimes I think certain people just feel superior scolding others or ferreting out rule violations.

Agreed!

Chris Stevenson
May 31st, 2011, 11:15 AM
Thanks for pointing that out, Mike. Now we can dispense with the prior accusations of cheating, rule violations, illegalities, immorality, tragedy of the commons, etc.

Now we're simply down to people in the masters swim community having different opinions about the gravity and impact of sandbagging.

I fail to see how the fact that sandbagging is forbidden at only nationals invalidates any of that. And it is pretty obvious that we have different opinions on the gravity/impact.


So sandbagging is so abhorrent to you that you can't give Kurt one free pass to leave early when he's been sitting around FOR YEARS at meets waiting through all the slow to fast heats? You have to make attending his nana's birthday an inherently selfish act?

Sometimes I think certain people just feel superior scolding others or ferreting out rule violations.

You got it.

I am quite sure that there are others in the distance events who would love to sandbag their times for reasons that seem eminently reasonable to them. Allowing them all to do it would be a mess (or a tragedy of the commons, if you prefer).

I have been a masters member for 25 years, enduring slow to fast. I have no problem with it, since it can often prevent 80-year-olds swimming at 10pm. And somehow I've managed this without building a reservoir of simmering resentment against all the slowpokes out there.

I have seen many people skip a day or an entire meet of nationals if real life conflicts in some way. So what? Geez, cry me a river already.

gull
May 31st, 2011, 11:18 AM
Now we can dispense with the prior accusations of cheating, rule violations, illegalities, immorality, tragedy of the commons, etc.

Perhaps we can dispense with hyperbole, too.

I believe the issue is whether or not sandbagging is unsportsmanlike.


Why should it matter what time someone else enters? If you are going to meets for your pleasure, to see how your training is paying off, then why worry about what someone else is doing at the meet?

I enter meets for a variety of reasons. But my expectation is that the other swimmers will conduct themselves in a sportsmanlike manner.

thewookiee
May 31st, 2011, 11:30 AM
Perhaps we can dispense with hyperbole, too.

I believe the issue is whether or not sandbagging is unsportsmanlike.



I enter meets for a variety of reasons. But my expectation is that the other swimmers will conduct themselves in a sportsmanlike manner.

If a swimmer enteres a time they are comfortable entering, for whatever reason, how is it unsportmanlike? Should we all run our meet entries by you, for your approval, to make sure we are competing based on your opinion of what others should do to take the meet good for you?

pwb
May 31st, 2011, 11:40 AM
See y'all in Auburn...and please don't enter the 400...and no spitting.:)Kurt, here's an idea:


Skip the 400 at Nationals and easily make the birthday party
Get your USAS registration in place
Enter the 400 at the AZ State Champs the July 9th weekend at PHX

You'll be there anyway, I assume
The 50M pool is fixed length and has been previously measured by USMS so you can submit your time for TT
This meet is far enough ahead of Nationals that you could do a mini-taper to crank out a good 400
I'll be there racing it so you're not the only other old fart in the pool


Alternately, skip Auburn, the timezone change and travel hassles so you can take the easier flight to the nicer locale and swim the Southwest Zone champs at Mission Viejo (https://www.clubassistant.com/club/meet_information.cfm?c=964&smid=3133). The order of events looks kind of nice for you:


Friday: 1500
Saturday: 400 free, 100 back, 200 free all well-spaced apart
Sunday: 800 free, 50 back, 200 back all well-spaced apart

Maybe guys like Hochstein and Kostich will show up there? I'm still considering going, though the order of events will be more difficult for me to choose.

gull
May 31st, 2011, 11:46 AM
Should we all run our meet entries by you, for your approval, to make sure we are competing based on your opinion of what others should do to make the meet good for you?

No hyperbole there.


If a swimmer enters a time they are comfortable entering, for whatever reason, how is it unsportsmanlike?

Not sure why you insist on being so obtuse. You know very well that by using the term "sandbagging" we are not referring to those who enter a time that is "comfortable" for them.

thewookiee
May 31st, 2011, 12:03 PM
.



Not sure why you insist on being so obtuse. You know very well that by using the term "sandbagging" we are not referring to those who enter a time that is "comfortable" for them.

I am not being obtuse. What I don't understand is why people care so damn much what others do in our adult fun league. Apparently, some of you do care if someone doesn't just enter their absolute lifetime best masters world record never been faster time for meets.

gull
May 31st, 2011, 12:11 PM
Apparently, some of you do care if someone doesn't just enter their absolute lifetime best masters world record never been faster time for meets.

Define hyperbole for me and use it in a sentence.

jroddin
May 31st, 2011, 12:14 PM
We are not kids (well, maybe the 30 & Us are); we are masters. Best times are a rarity, not commonplace. Much better if everyone attempts to enter what they think they will swim given their training, amount of rest, injuries, suit preference, etc.

I assume you are saying, "do as I say and not as I do..." :rofl:




It's not that fun getting killed.



But apparently it is fun sandbagging and then crushing the heat. :afraid:

gull
May 31st, 2011, 12:18 PM
For some people, any deviation from a seed time draws a comment.

Who exactly are these people?

thewookiee
May 31st, 2011, 12:29 PM
Define hyperbole for me and use it in a sentence.

Gull's moral superiority is bigger than the state of texas, alaska and the former soviet union combined.

jroddin
May 31st, 2011, 12:34 PM
If people sandbag get a kick out of crushing a heat, that it rather odd. As for the other point, I have already admitted sandbagging in mixed gender meets where the fast women get the outside lanes and the fast men are in the center lanes. I don't think that is very sportsmanlike either.

In your mind you don't think it is unsportsmanlike to sandbag when it benefits you (mixed gender meet, avoid outside lanes, etc.). I also understand your concern about not wanting to swim next to a big giant who makes a lot of waves. Guess what - I don't either! Because Clay is 1.5x my size should it be ok for me to sandbag so I don't have to swim next to him at the Albatross? Maybe we should ask for height and weight on the entry form so we can seed heats by size.

The fact remains that you end up being placed next to somebody else who has a much slower time than you. In your mind this is fair because now you don't have to swim in an end lane or next to a "fast guy." So why is this not unfair to that swimmer who is next to you now who gets to see you blow their doors off?

gull
May 31st, 2011, 12:36 PM
Gull's moral superiority is bigger than the state of texas, alaska and the former soviet union combined.

I don't see the word "hyperbole" in that sentence, so I can only give you partial credit.

Kurt Dickson
May 31st, 2011, 01:37 PM
Being a slow swimmer is unsportsmanlike? Huh. Perhaps USA-S meets would be more to your liking.

As far as your mom, that's sweet. Why did you enter the 400 if it is so important to you? Sounds like you are trying to have your cake and eat it too. (Or maybe that's your mom's cake...)

Just being ridiculous to call out a ridiculous rule...nothing would give my mommy more pleasure on her birthday than to dazzle her with tales of thrashing the first heat with my awesomeness even if it is in an unsportsmanlike fashion dodging you, Erwin and many other USMS greats--'cuz that it is what I do.:)

USAS meet? I think not. The little kids make fun of my fat rolls and I'm very sensitive.

qbrain
May 31st, 2011, 01:55 PM
Sometimes I think certain people just feel superior scolding others

I don't know about superior, but I certainly enjoyed it.

Chris Stevenson
May 31st, 2011, 02:07 PM
It invalidates that category of accusations for non-nationals meets, that's how. How can it be "cheating" or "illegal" or "immoral" if it's not against the rules? (I recall in a different thread you equated morality with rule compliance.) I don't prefer "tragedy of the commons" (your prior phrase) -- as I hardly think "tragedy" is an apt word.

Have you ever seen sandbagging create a "mess" at a meet? I haven't.

Is it a tragedy if you can't swim against Bobby P. or some other speedster in the same heat? Cry me a river ...

It invalidates "rule breaker," true. But not the lying, selfish part: sandbaggers misrepresent their time for personal gain in a way that inconveniences others.

"Tragedy" is not my term, that's what situations like this are called. "Degradation of common-pool resources," if you prefer. And yes, it lessens the nationals experience slightly. The term doesn't mean what you think it means here; (re-)read Hardin's paper if you like.


The essence of dramatic tragedy is not unhappiness. It resides in the solemnity of the remorseless working of things.

Look, it is clear that you sandbaggers dismiss any inconvenience that your actions cause as inconsequential. I don't. We are not going to agree on that point.

This whole thread (sorry, Kurt) is basically a rant by someone who tried to break the sandbagging rule but got caught, making the following points:

-- the rule is selectively applied
-- sandbagging doesn't inconvenience anyone
-- it is justified in this case
-- it is payback for years of being surrounded by slower swimmers.

I am not sympathetic to these arguments, you and other sandbaggers are.

The only one of these points that concerns me at all is the first, which Kurt didn't support with real data. I suspect that, of the people here, only Jeff and Michael might possibly know enough to address whether the rule is indeed selectively applied.

But heck, I got more speeding tickets when I drove a sporty red car than I do now. Doesn't mean I think the speed limit is a bad law and should be abolished.

jroddin
May 31st, 2011, 02:22 PM
Are you arguing that there's no valid rationale for separating men and women? You know I'm not the only woman complaining about women in end lanes in mixed gender meets.

I agree meets should be seeded split gender whenever possible. For the Albatross to not be mixed gender, we'd have to drop some events to meet the timeline (mixed gender seeding saves time). The alternative would be to cut longer events and shortchange the distance swimmers. Since distance swimmers are usually the minority while women make up ~50% of the participants, it is entirely possible we should investigate. Although I guess I first need a mathematician who can extract out the subset of female distance swimmers from my hypothesis...:D


I don't recall blowing anyone's doors off at the Albatross meet (or at any meet recently), though I certainly got my doors blown off at Zones when I entered a time that was too ambitious in my untapered state. And I recall being quite pleased with your reseeding the fast women so that we could actually swim against each other.

Are you kidding me? You blasted me up and down for unilaterally changing your seed times and sent daily emails questioning my authority to do so while asking me to change them back. I don't remember the specifics, but I thought you entered with 36 and 1:18 in the 50 and 100 back before I changed them (and you went 30+ and 1:09, I think). I guess I shouldn't complain because at the end of the day you were a satisfied customer so we both got we we wanted. But I do remember it being a meet director headache and if you simply entered with your anticipated times (like the rulebook states...) there would have been no issues.

pwb
May 31st, 2011, 02:33 PM
First off, I want to :cheerleader: Kurt for starting this fun thread. I think that, with the LCM season in its early days with most forumites in training but not yet competing in a lot of meets, all of our competitive juices are flowing into this one thread. It's great audience-engagement theater to watch and participate in.

But, because every thread needs a good hijack, I want to disagree with Jeff ...
I agree meets should be seeded split gender whenever possible. ... because I think seeding all meets solely based upon time is the best way to minimize timeline and maximize competition. I love our local meets for the fact that we swim mixed ages and mixed genders. I can still remember the time I swam a 400 SCM IM at the Ron Johnson meet a few years back when I wasn't in sh*t-hot shape, but Susan Von der Lippe was in Lane 5. I can guarantee you that she made me much faster that day because there wasn't another guy entered in the meet who approached either of us. I'm sure Fort has that effect on many a man when seeded in a mixed gender race.

aquageek
May 31st, 2011, 02:41 PM
The alternative would be to cut longer events and shortchange the distance swimmers.

jroddin - I disagree with this. I suggest you just cut a few more 50s. First, why do we even swim 50s since that stops when you turn 13 (except free)?

Second, no matter what you do the sprinters will still whine, cry, sulk, complain, moan, groan, sandbag, hyperventilate, have psuedo-scientific unsupportable hunches concerning training, stomp feet, require multiple non-food inhaling devices, get colds, get the flu, write Congress, demand their own locker rooms, stage both non-peaceful and extraordinarily violent protests, and go on hunger strike anyway. What's an extra tiny bit of noise from an already overly noisy group?

Keep the peace, keep the distance events.

thewookiee
May 31st, 2011, 02:49 PM
jroddin - I disagree with this. I suggest you just cut a few more 50s. First, why do we even swim 50s since that stops when you turn 13 (except free)?

Second, no matter what you do the sprinters will still whine, cry, sulk, complain, moan, groan, sandbag, hyperventilate, have psuedo-scientific unsupportable hunches concerning training, stomp feet, require multiple non-food inhaling devices, get colds, get the flu, write Congress, demand their own locker rooms, stage both non-peaceful and extraordinarily violent protests, and go on hunger strike anyway. What's an extra tiny bit of noise from an already overly noisy group?

Keep the peace, keep the distance events.

Spoken by an expert whiner.

Spock
May 31st, 2011, 02:53 PM
First, why do we even swim 50s since that stops when you turn 13 (except free)?

Because they are far superior events! ;)

gdanner
May 31st, 2011, 02:59 PM
I suggest you just cut a few more 50s. First, why do we even swim 50s since that stops when you turn 13 (except free)?

Keep the peace, keep the distance events.

That's not entirely correct, as much as I hate to admit it. There are non-Masters world records for the 50 events and the last time I participated in one, the Fina World Cup series meets have the 50's of all strokes in them.

On a related note, as I walked around the ISHOF a couple weeks ago, I noticed an extremely old (Olympic?) medal for the 400m backstroke in one of the display cases. I wonder why they phased out the event and if there was ever a 400m fly. That's some real swimming right there :). But that's another discussion altogether.

aquageek
May 31st, 2011, 03:01 PM
That's not entirely correct, as much as I hate to admit it. There are non-Masters world records for the 50 events and the last time I participated in one, the Fina World Cup series meets have the 50's of all strokes in them.

Thanks for the correction.

400 meter back would be an awesome event. Makes no sense that free on your back ends at 200.

thewookiee
May 31st, 2011, 03:04 PM
400 meter back would be an awesome event. Makes no sense that free on your back ends at 200.

I agree with you on this one. You would get to see me swim a distance event if there was a 400 meter backstroke(I would still need a lap counter though)

Kurt Dickson
May 31st, 2011, 03:37 PM
First off, I want to :cheerleader: Kurt for starting this fun thread. .
Thanks, I did debate starting it since I knew I would be on the wrong side of this one, but throwing grenades is kind of fun...if nobody gets hurt.

As far as ranting goes, if we went by word count, I was definitely not the ranter on this thread (lucid points may be another matter).

I am down with a 400 long course backstroke as I have always thought that would be my event.

I love you all despite crushing nana's and my dreams.:hug::whiteflag:

knelson
May 31st, 2011, 04:18 PM
Look, it is clear that you sandbaggers dismiss any inconvenience that your actions cause as inconsequential.

This is a great quote. Sandbagging is a self-centered act. I don't think anyone can deny that.

thewookiee
May 31st, 2011, 04:19 PM
I am going to enter the 400 back and put in a split request. :bolt:

For the 50, 100 and 200?

thewookiee
May 31st, 2011, 04:24 PM
This is a great quote. Sandbagging is a self-centered act. I don't think anyone can deny that.

Isn't this a self-centered sport? Afterall, when we are swimming, aren't we swimming for ourselves?

gull
May 31st, 2011, 04:34 PM
...I think it's debatable whether every consequence is really consequential.

The question is, do you consider unsportsmanlike conduct inconsequential? I do not.

knelson
May 31st, 2011, 04:41 PM
Isn't this a self-centered sport? Afterall, when we are swimming, aren't we swimming for ourselves?

Sure, and feel free to do whatever you want when you're out training by yourself, but when you're a member of a team or attending a meet I think you've got an obligation to consider the consequences of the things you do and how they may affect everyone else.

thewookiee
May 31st, 2011, 05:01 PM
Sure, and feel free to do whatever you want when you're out training by yourself, but when you're a member of a team or attending a meet I think you've got an obligation to consider the consequences of the things you do and how they may affect everyone else.

I guess each time we swim a lot faster or slower than our entry time, we should apologize to the people around us for potientially f-ing up their race

Allen Stark
May 31st, 2011, 05:09 PM
That's not entirely correct, as much as I hate to admit it. There are non-Masters world records for the 50 events and the last time I participated in one, the Fina World Cup series meets have the 50's of all strokes in them.

On a related note, as I walked around the ISHOF a couple weeks ago, I noticed an extremely old (Olympic?) medal for the 400m backstroke in one of the display cases. I wonder why they phased out the event and if there was ever a 400m fly. That's some real swimming right there :). But that's another discussion altogether.

Australia Masters keeps record for the 50,100,200,400 and 1500M in each stroke.

Speedo
May 31st, 2011, 05:30 PM
I recently swam a 50 fly where I had provided my best time as a seed time. I decided to swim it at a moderate pace to save energy for an event after that one.

Out of what I thought was consideration, I told a friend of mine swimming in the next lane what I intended to do, and it was the first time that particular person had even shown a hint of annoyance. He wanted a race. I wanted a rest. I got my way. He still did his best time in a jammer.

gull
May 31st, 2011, 05:34 PM
I guess each time we swim a lot faster or slower than our entry time, we should apologize to the people around us for potientially f-ing up their race.

Now that you've mastered hyperbole, perhaps it's time to move on to other rhetorical devices.


Not everyone will have your reaction, Gull.

Which is what, exactly? Sandbagging doesn't cause me angst. I just happen to believe that it is unsportsmanlike.


...Kurt's attempted sandbag -- while unsportsmanlike in theory -- may have had no impact whatsoever.

Explain to me why there must be a tangible "impact."

chaos
May 31st, 2011, 05:48 PM
Keep the peace, keep the distance events.

move all the distance events to the OW.

(thats my contribution to this thread)

JimRude
May 31st, 2011, 06:06 PM
:2cents: This is one of the weirdest threads I've ever read.

Why not just enter the time you think you'll swim. For those swimming 100m or less, you're hopefully planning to swim at max velocity +/- the whole race anyway, so who cares what's happening next to you.

For races involving some form of what I have heard distance swimmers refer to as "pacing", I could imagine that an idiot seeded next to you going much slower or faster than you would be frustrating. This would be solved if they entered a time approximating what they think they'll do in the race...

YMMV.

gull
May 31st, 2011, 06:18 PM
I thought the position that sandbagging is bad presupposes a negative impact of varying degrees on other competitors.

Exactly. So do we really need to poll the other swimmers in the heat to determine whether the sandbagging should be tolerated?

jroddin
May 31st, 2011, 06:34 PM
Wookie - You keep bringing up the same comment about this being an independent sport. I think we can all agree if Kurt swam in the first heat with full disclosure to all, there would be little to no harm done. And his reasoning for doing so would be acceptable to all in the heat. And people would agree with you that swimming is an individual sport.

However, what if we took every compelling story into account and seeded everybody per their special needs (can't swim in an end lane, can't swim in a shallow lane, can't swim next to a man, can't swim in a lane where there are shadows, etc.) and the timeline took an extra hour (easy to do) each day at Nationals. That's where your theory about this only being an individual sport goes awry. Stay in practice and/or swim on your own if you don't want your actions to affect others. But if you are going to compete, then deal with the consequences that your submitted time (seed time) does in fact affect the running of the meet as well as those around you whether you like it or not. If everybody thought of only themselves, we wouldn't have a very well organized Nationals.

If you open the "exceptions" floodgate for one, how are you going to tell the next swimmer who has an even more compelling story why he/she can't get special treatment? Especially when they say, "but you let that one guy swim in the first heat of the 400..."

pwb
May 31st, 2011, 07:09 PM
I just spent 4 days racing in a USAS meet where all the kids were entered in their best times for prelims and then we were all, obviously, entered in our prelims times for finals. Here's my "AHA" that I think all swimmers need to understand: heat sheets are works of fiction. 99+% of the time, all swimmers' performances will vary from their entered time. In particular, what I saw this weekend was that the delta in performances between prelims swims and finals (both faster and slower) was often more dramatic than the differences between initial heat sheets and prelims performance.

People need to get over the illusion of the heat sheet as predictive of that day's performance and just race.

Speedo
May 31st, 2011, 07:21 PM
... psychic harm to spectators like those watching Speedo's race?This happens frequently, I might add.

thewookiee
May 31st, 2011, 07:25 PM
Wookie - You keep bringing up the same comment about this being an independent sport. I think we can all agree if Kurt swam in the first heat with full disclosure to all, there would be little to no harm done. And his reasoning for doing so would be acceptable to all in the heat. And people would agree with you that swimming is an individual sport.

However, what if we took every compelling story into account and seeded everybody per their special needs (can't swim in an end lane, can't swim in a shallow lane, can't swim next to a man, can't swim in a lane where there are shadows, etc.) and the timeline took an extra hour (easy to do) each day at Nationals. That's where your theory about this only being an individual sport goes awry. Stay in practice and/or swim on your own if you don't want your actions to affect others. But if you are going to compete, then deal with the consequences that your submitted time (seed time) does in fact affect the running of the meet as well as those around you whether you like it or not. If everybody thought of only themselves, we wouldn't have a very well organized Nationals.

If you open the "exceptions" floodgate for one, how are you going to tell the next swimmer who has an even more compelling story why he/she can't get special treatment? Especially when they say, "but you let that one guy swim in the first heat of the 400..."

I will keep this in mind next year at the albatross meet when I do a reverse sandbag to warm-down from an event that is scheduled to close to another favorite event.

jaadams1
May 31st, 2011, 07:41 PM
I just spent 4 days racing in a USAS meet where all the kids were entered in their best times for prelims and then we were all, obviously, entered in our prelims times for finals. Here's my "AHA" that I think all swimmers need to understand: heat sheets are works of fiction. 99+% of the time, all swimmers' performances will vary from their entered time. In particular, what I saw this weekend was that the delta in performances between prelims swims and finals (both faster and slower) was often more dramatic than the differences between initial heat sheets and prelims performance.

People need to get over the illusion of the heat sheet as predictive of that day's performance and just race.

My last USA-S meet was the same way. The kids (and myself) were all entered with their best times, (which happened to be from a whole year ago). Most of these kids are growing stronger and developing a lot between ages 14-18 and tend to blow their times out of the water. Even though I was seeded right next to a "similar time", I was getting beat by a significant margin most of the time, and I was equaling or slightly bettering my own times.
I think for the kids it is easier to beat their best times season to season. Masters...yeah, just get out there and race!! :banana:

pwb
May 31st, 2011, 07:48 PM
My last USA-S meet was the same way. The kids (and myself) were all entered with their best times, (which happened to be from a whole year ago). Most of these kids are growing stronger and developing a lot between ages 14-18 and tend to blow their times out of the water. My experience was different. As the first LCM meet for lots of these kids, I generally found that the 15/16 year old boys were often (but not always) cranking ahead of their times, whereas the 17+ guys were often (but not always) well slower. It was a crapshoot ... almost as much as the crapshoot that we see in Masters' meets. On top of this, since this meet required qualifying times and some kids had those from yards and the yards times are seeded with the slowest meters times, you had blowouts in the early heats. I never once heard a kid (or a parent or a coach) complain about lopsided heats, people getting blown out in the early heats or timeline shenanigans. And this was with some actual, physical heat winner prizes on the line (e.g., cacti!).

Speedo
May 31st, 2011, 09:38 PM
I'm no expert, but the commentator suggests there's an advantage to swimming in an outside lane. Shameless plug... I know.
http://www.floswimming.org/videos/coverage/view_video/234996/178417

gull
May 31st, 2011, 09:52 PM
I don't really follow your logic.

Re-read my posts. I have been very consistent. If sandbagging is unsportsmanlike, and some of us believe that it is, there is no need to demonstrate what you refer to as an "impact." Disrespecting the other swimmers is all that's necessary and sufficient.

Herb
May 31st, 2011, 10:02 PM
Sandbaggers are like those drivers on the freeway who always pass everyone and merge at the last second when two lanes are going down to one.

I'm not going to get too worked up about it, I've already got enough stress in my life. But it is really lame.

Herb
May 31st, 2011, 10:21 PM
I'm glad all you guys are so willing to dismiss the concerns of the opposite sex in mixed gender meets. As I asked before, and no one answered, is it fair for the fastest women to swim in outside lanes while the fastest men swim in center lanes or for women generally to get more outside lanes? Is this concern really tantamount to seeing "shadows" in lanes? Doesn't really seem all that sporting to me or to other women. But the guys are set, so I guess it's just easier to rag on women for sandbagging.



What guys are set? 99% of us swim every race in a completely random lane. The poor plight of the top ranked female in a mixed gender meet. Perhaps you can find consolation in your national titles and top 10 rankings.

Like I said earlier, perhaps you have an argument that the top ranked female should get the same opportunity as the top ranked male. But this seems beyond petty in the grand scheme of things. Perhaps the solution would be to seed the top couple of men into random lanes in the final heat if this is that big of an issue. Then every single swimmer would be in the same boat.

gdanner
May 31st, 2011, 10:45 PM
I'm glad all you guys are so willing to dismiss the concerns of the opposite sex in mixed gender meets. As I asked before, and no one answered, is it fair for the fastest women to swim in outside lanes while the fastest men swim in center lanes or for women generally to get more outside lanes? Is this concern really tantamount to seeing "shadows" in lanes? Doesn't really seem all that sporting to me or to other women.

I'm not sure I understand why the gender matters, unless you're talking about a competitive standpoint of wanting to race your peers for place. In which case, sandbagging does not help either, because you've put yourself with slower swimmers.

With relation to possible wake issues, anyone who isn't the fastest in their event has to deal with that potential problem. Don't the top men who are 50 or 60 years old have to deal with that as well? You also mentioned a size factor earlier, but that's simply part of the sport. As a 155-160lb guy, I deal with that at every high level meet I attend. Jeff Dash was next to me in Atlanta and he's approximately 240 lbs of solid muscle (that's not an exaggeration either). Our relay was next to Auburn, that was pleasant as well :). What I'm trying to say is that plenty of people experience your concerns, but the rules are in place to benefit the majority, not a select few.

I think adversity treats you well anyways. Don't fight it. :angel:

Herb
May 31st, 2011, 10:52 PM
I think your response is petty, and bereft of some of the actual analysis in other posts such as Gulls. Perhaps if you trained harder and more often, you would be faster and not assigned a random lane. I am not exactly a slouch, though I do get plenty of random lanes.

This is not, moreover, just my own personal petty complaint. Many women feel this way about mixed gender meets. And it's not just about outside lanes; it's about getting swamped by some men depending on pool conditions.

And I never drive like you suggest.

I'm signing off on the all male thread now.

oh, if you want some analysis to back up my posts I analyzed your lane placement in the first few events that showed up in the masters data base. Assuming an 8 lane pool in the 50 free you were in an outside lane in 25% of your races. 50 back 15%, 100 back 33%, 50 fly 23%. For an average of averages of 24% in an outside lane compared to an expected value of 25%.

Kurt Dickson
May 31st, 2011, 11:48 PM
oh, if you want some analysis to back up my posts I analyzed your lane placement in the first few events that showed up in the masters data base. Assuming an 8 lane pool in the 50 free you were in an outside lane in 25% of your races. 50 back 15%, 100 back 33%, 50 fly 23%. For an average of averages of 24% in an outside lane compared to an expected value of 25%.

at the risk of the pot calling the kettle black: too much time on your hands bro.

knelson
June 1st, 2011, 12:00 AM
People need to get over the illusion of the heat sheet as predictive of that day's performance and just race.

While I generally agree, my experience in masters meets is you're often lucky to get much of a race and if people who might be competitive against you are seeded in a different heat it diminishes the chances even further.

White Lightning
June 1st, 2011, 05:37 AM
No chance to sandbag in Germany, the coaches fill out all meet entry forms, no discussion. Masters Swimmers do get to pick their races, however--Gott sei Dank!

analazy
June 1st, 2011, 06:01 AM
Have had affiliation as a Master in England, Germany, Portugal, Spain, never accepted coaches, organizations or anyone to decide which entry time would be signed.
We are adults, we have a choice to decide… Do not accept someone to say what time I will swim , until today never signed and think will never sign with my best time ever or for each year.
If people think it is wrong to take advantage of a signed time just add penalty fees to the regulations, for each …seconds more or less than the entry time..
Never swum as a youngster and do not compare adult swimming with young swimming or elite swimming. This is supposed to be fun and “choice” free.
This Saturday have signed for Madrid national, if they do not correct my entry times ( 2 events are with entry times best done while was affiliated to Spain last year) I will not participate as have paid the registration and my trip to swim events under times I KNOW doing on practice.

jroddin
June 1st, 2011, 08:09 AM
I will keep this in mind next year at the albatross meet when I do a reverse sandbag to warm-down from an event that is scheduled to close to another favorite event.

We'll be happy to take your money! Please enter the maximum number of events. And buy a t-shirt and social ticket, too :applaud:


I'm glad all you guys are so willing to dismiss the concerns of the opposite sex in mixed gender meets. As I asked before, and no one answered, is it fair for the fastest women to swim in outside lanes while the fastest men swim in center lanes or for women generally to get more outside lanes? Is this concern really tantamount to seeing "shadows" in lanes? Doesn't really seem all that sporting to me or to other women. But the guys are set, so I guess it's just easier to rag on women for sandbagging.



I've heard you loud and clear that you don't like swimming in meets seeded mixed gender. And you are absolutely right that other women feel the same way as you even if they haven't said so here. Last year a woman wrote a request to the Albatross meet staff asking us to consider seeding the sexes apart. And I know of men who don't like racing against women because they don't take it so well getting beat by women (I'm starting to get used to it, BTW!). And obviously there are meets that address these concerns and seed the meet M&W apart. In fact, there are two annual meets at your own home pool that seed the sexes apart (Sprint Classic in the fall, Zones in the spring) and another meet a short drive away (David Gregg in February). And of course Nationals twice a year.

And there are also women who prefer mixed gender seeding because they simply want to race against people of similar speed regardless of age, gender. And there are men who like swimming against women because it gives them extra incentive to not get "chicked." And there are meets seeded this way.

I think I finally get it that you are trying to justify why it is acceptable to sandbag in a mixed gender meet (however, I'll still disagree because it means placing you next to somebody seeded with a much slower time and it isn't fair to them). And I haven't seen you sandbag in a separate gender seeded meet so this all makes sense.

The meets that seed everybody together don't do this just to irritate women who don't like to swim against men, they do it because they can't rent the pool any longer. Since there are already meets in place that seed the way you prefer, can't you just focus on those meets for ideal conditions and then do the other ones just for fun?

Jeff

White Lightning
June 1st, 2011, 09:12 AM
"Have had affiliation as a Master in England, Germany, Portugal, Spain, never accepted coaches, organizations or anyone to decide which entry time would be signed."

How did you convince your German coach to willfully enter a sandbagged time--especially when his valued reputation (trust me on this) is on the line?

analazy
June 1st, 2011, 09:32 AM
"Have had affiliation as a Master in England, Germany, Portugal, Spain, never accepted coaches, organizations or anyone to decide which entry time would be signed."

How did you convince your German coach to willfully enter a sandbagged time--especially when his valued reputation (trust me on this) is on the line?

Coach?! never had a coach and think never will; have been a Masters for 17 years training alone.
Did not had to convince anyone, while doing my registrations always put which time I want to enter, if by any change the organization decides to put a time given by the informatics system I ask polity to change , no participation if the organization refuses.
As my nationality rarely is the same as the affiliation seldom had problems (people think as a foreigner……), but sporadically I miss a few competitions because federations assume what time I am going to do :blah:

qbrain
June 1st, 2011, 09:34 AM
The meets that seed everybody together don't do this just to irritate women who don't like to swim against men

Wait a minute, let's not forget the plight of the young men who are tired of getting chicked by the older, better looking and FASTER women out there. chowmi, Medicine Woman, Eney Jones and Laura Glass have all beat me in person and a couple have even told me good swims! Way to pat me on the head and shoo me off to the corner to cry.

Ok, Laura isn't older than me, just faster in 3 out of 4 strokes and thus age shouldn't be a factor.

The Sandbagging rule needs to be extended to chicking. Fast chicks get lead weights tied around their legs, they have to enter with their best shaved and tapered times from college and swim slower than me. Subrule A shall stipulate that one Kurt Dickson is required to checkin in person before the early warm up and swim the final heat of the last event of the day is. Subrule B shall stipulate that one The Fortress will be required to swim between pwolf and fmracing in lane 8 until such time that bigger faster swimmers can be found as replacements. That should solve all the complaints about special enforcement.

Whose on the rules committee? I need to write a letter.

White Lightning
June 1st, 2011, 09:47 AM
Coach?! never had a coach and think never will; have been a Masters for 17 years training alone.
Did not had to convince anyone, while doing my registrations always put which time I want to enter, if by any change the organization decides to put a time given by the informatics system I ask polity to change , no participation if the organization refuses.
As my nationality rarely is the same as the affiliation seldom had problems (people think as a foreigner……), but sporadically I miss a few competitions because federations assume what time I am going to do :blah:


I see. It is different when you swim for a team in Germany. It is good to know that if I ever get into sandbagging I can always quit the team and still get to swim in some meets.

knelson
June 1st, 2011, 09:48 AM
until today never signed and think will never sign with my best time ever or for each year.

I don't get it. Why would you not enter with your best time? And "it's my choice" isn't what I'm going for. If you are entering with the times you think you will swim that's one thing, but I can't understand why you'd choose to enter with times you know are slower than you'll swim.

analazy
June 1st, 2011, 09:57 AM
I don't get it. Why would you not enter with your best time? And "it's my choice" isn't what I'm going for. If you are entering with the times you think you will swim that's one thing, but I can't understand why you'd choose to enter with times you know are slower than you'll swim.
my best times each age group are European records!:afraid:
I do a average of 2 meetings per month , do you think I will do ER each time I swim?:bolt:

please, try to understand ,in my choice going to meetings is not to do best but to see people! going to swim is going to a social event where rarely I am in a mood to go fast! The motives to be Master are different from each … my social life is participate at Master swimming as I live at an isolated farm I the middle of nowhere in Portugal (nest city 44kms, nest village 15kms, next house with people 3kms):D

That Guy
June 1st, 2011, 09:59 AM
Wait a minute, let's not forget the plight of the young men who are tired of getting chicked by the older, better looking and FASTER women out there. chowmi, Medicine Woman, Eney Jones and Laura Glass have all beat me in person and a couple have even told me good swims! Way to pat me on the head and shoo me off to the corner to cry.

Ok, Laura isn't older than me, just faster in 3 out of 4 strokes and thus age shouldn't be a factor.

The Sandbagging rule needs to be extended to chicking. Fast chicks get lead weights tied around their legs, they have to enter with their best shaved and tapered times from college and swim slower than me. Subrule A shall stipulate that one Kurt Dickson is required to checkin in person before the early warm up and swim the final heat of the last event of the day is. Subrule B shall stipulate that one The Fortress will be required to swim between pwolf and fmracing in lane 8 until such time that bigger faster swimmers can be found as replacements. That should solve all the complaints about special enforcement.

Whose on the rules committee? I need to write a letter.

Subrule C shall stipulate that whenever a thread veers into whitewhine.com territory, qbrain will be required to post. :agree:

Chris Stevenson
June 1st, 2011, 11:59 AM
I just spent 4 days racing in a USAS meet where all the kids were entered in their best times for prelims and then we were all, obviously, entered in our prelims times for finals. Here's my "AHA" that I think all swimmers need to understand: heat sheets are works of fiction. 99+% of the time, all swimmers' performances will vary from their entered time. In particular, what I saw this weekend was that the delta in performances between prelims swims and finals (both faster and slower) was often more dramatic than the differences between initial heat sheets and prelims performance.

People need to get over the illusion of the heat sheet as predictive of that day's performance and just race.

I am not sure how comparable USA-S (especially age group) meets are to USMS meets. In USA-S meets it is not uncommon at all to see swimmers blow their times out of the water; then (if I know the kid and congratulate him/her) I find out that the time is over one year old. At 13 or 14 that makes a pretty huge difference! Heck, I see age-groupers doing best times in practice sometimes.

Older kids are different, but that is also a crapshoot based on hormonal levels, who's dating whom, the phase of the moon, and God knows what else. I have seen such huge differences in prelim & final swims that I just marvel how age-group coaches have any hair left at all.

pwolf66
June 1st, 2011, 02:21 PM
I guess each time we swim a lot faster or slower than our entry time, we should apologize to the people around us for potientially f-ing up their race

Sorry but that's a straw man. The issue isn't poor or great performance, the issue is DELIBERATE slow seeding before hand. If you blow out a shoulder and don't finish, that's one thing but if you are ripping off 2:00 repeats for 200 free in practice and seed at 2:05 that is completely different.

So please, stick to the base issue here of INTENTIONALLY putting an unrealistic seed time. I don't care about the folks who put an honest time and either have the swim of thier life or have something happen that adversely affects thier performance. That can not be controlled. But what CAN be controlled is once again the DELIBERATE mis-representation of a swimmer's realistic time.


My first meet in 2008, I seeded very poorly, not intentionally but because it was my first meet in 20 years with a whole month back in the pool. And I was embarrased a bit as I swam considerably faster than my seed times. But I didn't want to NT as that would have been much worse. Those things happen but the fact is that deliberately entering a seed time will affect the meet experience of a minimum of one swimmer (not including the sandbagger) and potentially much more than that.

pwb
June 1st, 2011, 08:09 PM
I am not sure how comparable USA-S (especially age group) meets are to USMS meets. In USA-S meets it is not uncommon at all to see swimmers blow their times out of the water; then (if I know the kid and congratulate him/her) I find out that the time is over one year old. At 13 or 14 that makes a pretty huge difference! Heck, I see age-groupers doing best times in practice sometimes.

Older kids are different, but that is also a crapshoot based on hormonal levels, who's dating whom, the phase of the moon, and God knows what else. I have seen such huge differences in prelim & final swims that I just marvel how age-group coaches have any hair left at all.I agree, but, relative to the heat sheet, whether it's Masters or USAS, there's just different s**t that impacts why the entry time differs from the result. I can tell you I was very bummed that the kid seeded next to me (faster) in the 800 went way SLOWER than his entry time as I was looking to go what his entry time was and was hoping he'd pace me. After the 100, though, when I realized he was going to be off, I got over it and did what we all need to do: I swam the best I could and tried to race whoever else I could find in the pool. For me, what this meant was trying to see how far I could extend my lead over said kid in lane 3 ... even though he was off, I could still 'use' his performance to help me. There are loads of ways to race ... head-to-head isn't the only method.

pwolf66
June 1st, 2011, 09:25 PM
Older kids are different, but that is also a crapshoot based on hormonal levels, who's dating whom, the phase of the moon, and God knows what else. I have seen such huge differences in prelim & final swims that I just marvel how age-group coaches have any hair left at all.

Me too.

:applaud: :applaud:

Gotta give you props on this one. You show a remarkable understanding of the considerations that go into a coach's post-race critique starting at the age of 13. 12&Unders are always the proverbial crap shoot.

jim thornton
June 2nd, 2011, 10:48 PM
My view on sandbagging is a bit variable, like my view on the respective rights and responsibilities of car drivers and bicyclists sharing the same road.

When I am a car driver, and I am forced to slow down because a cyclist refuses to stay where he belongs, i.e., near the curb, I am outraged!

When I am a cyclist and some yahoo in a car acts like he owns the road just because he is burning gas, I am outraged!

I have, in other words, accused both species of being total dicks. It is all in the eye of the judger.

The same is the case with sandbagging.

When I have sandbagged in the past--usually not by huge amounts, but still...--I can easily justify it by telling myself I haven't been feeling well in practice, my shoulder is a bit sore, etc. etc. I have occasionally negative sandbagged, too, that is, putting in a near world record time to guarantee I will get a good lane (I once entered a 42 in the 100 free, though it is possible I entered a 52, and the meet official just read this wrong.) I may feel a twinge of guilt, but I certainly don't feel anything that would send me off to the confessional booth.

On the other hand, when I have been sandbagged in the past, it usually doesn't bother me too terribly much. There was one notable exception. A fellow at CZ a few years back entered a 54+ in the 100 freestyle and was next to me. I had entered a relatively realistic 53 and was, on paper, the favorite in the heat.

I looked at this fellow's other times and noticed he had also entered a low 24 in the 50 butterfly. This was my first clue that he was sandbagging.

To make a long story short, he swam a 48. Not only did I think I was going incredibly slow, but his wake off the second turn was so tsunamic that I inhaled a mouthful of water and spent my third length coughing underwater.

I honestly don't think I would have minded his sandbagging all that much were it not for the inhalation problem. I think when you put down an honest time and, by luck of the seeding process, get the "fast" lane in a heat, it's kind of a little perk of smooth water that you deserve. When somebody gets this smooth water via sandbagging deception--and turbulates it extremely, causing frail types like me to asphyxiate--then I think they deserve what is coming to them.

In this case, what is coming to him is to have his name turned in perpetuity to a verb.

As in: To Hiddabiddle (verb, transitive)--shamelessly and unapologetically sandbag an elder, swamping his lungs with your wake.

Note: I may have not spelled Steve Hiddabiddle's last name exactly right here, but he knows who he is!

I have been trying to entrench the verb Hiddabiddle into the Masters Swimming lexicon for several years now. Please help the cause by using it in a sentence at every meet you go to in the future.

Example: Boy, did you see Mr. X hiddabiddle that sap in lane 3!


http://www.usms.org/forums/showthread.php?p=185189

PS If you do hiddabiddle someone, either positively or negatively, I personally believe you owe it to your adjacent lane swimmers to fess up before the start of the race so they won't be thoroughly discombobulated.

For instance, when I entered the 42 in the 100 freestyle, I told the guys on the left and the right of me that there was a reasonable chance I wouldn't be swimming quite that fast.

They just looked at me dumbfounded.

That Guy
June 2nd, 2011, 11:24 PM
the only female POV is dismissed


To balance this out, we either need to dismiss some more female POV's or dismiss some male POV's. I'm thinking that the first idea is not going to work out as perfectly as it would seem... so I'll take one for the team here.

From my point of view, pi is equal to -5,
Abraham Lincoln was the 3rd vice president of Quebec,
Albert Einstein invented the cotton gin after he chopped down a cherry tree,
and sandbagging is not that important, though I reserve the right to point and laugh when I see it.

jim thornton
June 3rd, 2011, 09:12 AM
I propose Title IX-b.

Any swimming forums receiving federal funding must give the same weight to female comments that are given to male comments.

In fact, to make up for years of discriminatory practices, male posters for the foreseeable future should be forced to type with specially designed Title IX-b keyboards embedded with softwxre thut randimqly xhanjes litter confugtratiousns, skroowing ip spilling, and maeking sayd commints seems bad and dimb.

Chris Stevenson
June 3rd, 2011, 09:45 AM
have wondered whether the most selfish people are those that enter the maximum number of events at every meet.

The least-selfish swimmers don't enter meets at all. In fact, extending this reasoning to its logical conclusion, the most saintly swimmers don't actually train in the pool, so they don't take up any pool space even in practice.

So I nominate Jazz as the paragon of swimming virtue: he hardly trains in the pool (usually on his own), doesn't sandbag from what I can recall, and enters only a few of the shortest events on those infrequent occasions that he does feel the urge to compete. Barely a ripple on the timeline.

At the other end of the spectrum we have people like Laurie Hug and Thomas Patterson: they train like crazy, swim the maximum number of events -- often nothing under 200 -- and generally make everyone else feel like complete slackers. And they do it with a smile, too. We should vote those bozos off the island.

stillwater
June 3rd, 2011, 09:47 AM
Reflecting upon this dripping with moral superiority thread where the only female POV is dismissed

Perhaps no other female agrees with you.


[QUOTE]Originally Posted by The Fortress http://forums.usms.org/images/buttons/viewpost.gif
I don't recall blowing anyone's doors off at the Albatross meet
Are you kidding me? You blasted me up and down for unilaterally changing your seed times and sent daily emails questioning my authority to do so while asking me to change them back. I don't remember the specifics, but I thought you entered with 36 and 1:18 in the 50 and 100 back before I changed them (and you went 30+ and 1:09, I think). QUOTE]

Sounds like you were trying to cheat. You and Charles Barkley, role models delux.

Jazz Hands
June 3rd, 2011, 10:08 AM
So I nominate Jazz as the paragon of swimming virtue: he hardly trains in the pool (usually on his own), doesn't sandbag from what I can recall, and enters only a few of the shortest events on those infrequent occasions that he does feel the urge to compete. Barely a ripple on the timeline.

Actually I do sandbag, quite often. But that's very sweet of you.

Unfortunately, "Paragon of Swimming Virtue" doesn't quite fit in the character limit for user titles, so I had to abbreviate.

Chris Stevenson
June 3rd, 2011, 11:24 AM
I knew you would respond thusly ... Sounds a bit like you're now making moral judgments about the number of yards people train and race? Distance swimmer deserve to swim more events at meets?

I don't feel like a slacker just because I'm a sprinter. Though I grant you we are a whiney lot.

Apparently sprinters are a little oversensitive, too...it was meant as a joke not a moral judgment.

stillwater
June 3rd, 2011, 12:24 PM
Have you polled them? I have.

And there were other women sandbagging at Mr. Roddin's meet, one going after a WR for example. One of the nicest women I know, hardly Charles Barkley material. And another female WR backstroker has sandbagged every time she's ever swum in that meet. And another woman says she's doing it next year. And another woman wrote asking for separate seeding. Definitely a lot of "cheating" women at this meet who don't appear to sandbag or complain at other meets. Huh.

Wow, I'd love to see the results of your "poll". I'm sure the questions weren't biased, and the polled group was a reflection of women swimmers who compete at meets. Entering a 36 when you did a 30? Come on.

In our little forum discussion you don't have too many female supporters. Perhaps they don't like being edged out of a top ten time by someone who knowingly doesn't follow the rules.

Just because others cheat doesn't let you off the hook. I wonder how many top ten times you have where you knowingly entered a false time to gain an advantage over your fellow competitors. Perhaps a little s behind your name would make it better.

I agree that the max number of events should be adjusted. I'm all for women and mens heats. It would be nice to have a true national championship, but that's another topic that doesn't answer why you think it's ok to enter false times to gain an advantage.

Kurt Dickson
June 3rd, 2011, 01:04 PM
Perhaps they don't like being edged out of a top ten time by someone who knowingly doesn't follow the rules. Just because others cheat doesn't let you off the hook. I wonder how many top ten times you have where you knowingly entered a false time to gain an advantage over your fellow competitors. Perhaps a little s behind your name would make it better.

Pretty harsh. Maybe after on the few occasions I have won my age group for nationals and being knocked out of an all-american spot by somebody, I should call them a coward and unsportsmanlike for not facing me. I understand it is a different situation but I cannot imagine calling someone a cheater just because they are in another heat and beat me straight up (a wussy perhaps, but not a cheater).

As far as number of events goes, I guess I am not only a once a decade sandbagger, but a scumbag as well...9-11 events per meet for me...which is the actual threshold in my mind that makes it ok for a 44 year-old man to shave his body....that is why they call me the "garbage man."--quantity over quality:)

stillwater
June 3rd, 2011, 01:30 PM
Pretty harsh.

Sorry, my intent wasn't to be so harsh. I save that for the Wookersteradingdong.

I respect Fort and her swimming ability. I think she would have swam as fast in lane eight as lane four. Why then break the rules?

Sandbagging has a negative effect on other swimmers, and it is breaking the rules.

qbrain
June 3rd, 2011, 01:58 PM
For the humanitarians and religious studies crowd who specialize in such things, where exactly does does sandbagging rank in relation to judgement of others? Just thought I would get some clarification since some people view the issue as a moral one.

stillwater
June 3rd, 2011, 02:27 PM
After some thought, I retract my statement apologizing about being harsh.

The "moral police" have standards that others don't meet.

thewookiee
June 3rd, 2011, 02:39 PM
Sorry, my intent wasn't to be so harsh. I save that for the Wookersteradingdong.



Thanks. I love having unknown named friends like you.

The Fortress
June 3rd, 2011, 03:47 PM
Wow, I'd love to see the results of your "poll". I'm sure the questions weren't biased, and the polled group was a reflection of women swimmers who compete at meets. Entering a 36 when you did a 30? Come on.

In our little forum discussion you don't have too many female supporters. Perhaps they don't like being edged out of a top ten time by someone who knowingly doesn't follow the rules.

Just because others cheat doesn't let you off the hook. I wonder how many top ten times you have where you knowingly entered a false time to gain an advantage over your fellow competitors. Perhaps a little s behind your name would make it better.

I agree that the max number of events should be adjusted. I'm all for women and mens heats. It would be nice to have a true national championship, but that's another topic that doesn't answer why you think it's ok to enter false times to gain an advantage.

You, sir, are a bigger *ss than me!

I guess I should be sent to the forum jail for my attempted sandbag at a non-national meet.

With respect to my particular situation at that one meet (as opposed to the 100s and 1000s of sandbaggers, many of whom are TT & WR swimmers), you must be quite dense. I clearly stated that I did not want to be consigned to an end lane with men in all the center lanes if I entered the time I "expected" to swim in my best events. And though there is a rule that is supposed to prohibit this from happening, it is never applied. I don't happen to think it's fair or sportsmanlike for that to happen to women. Sorry if this seems "petty" to posters like Herb or bothersome to meet directors, but I tapered 3 weeks for this meet, fairness was important to me and I was excessively nervous. And, rest assured, when Jeff did take the time to reseed many of the women's times (which he doesn't want to do again), I had plenty of competition and swam in 3 different lanes. So no scarlet S by my WRs. And for the record, I swam much faster than I thought I would in the backstroke events and my shock was evident; this happens sometimes, especially after swimming for years exclusively in a tech suit. (I seem to recall you thought that was "cheating" as well.) Also, for the record, the outside lanes at this pool are, in fact, less desirable -- unlike some of the outside lanes at national pools as in the video Speedo posted.

I have no idea why other women haven't commented. It's possible, as you say, that they all think I'm scurrilous for copping to such attempted behavior at one mixed gender taper meet. I, on the other hand, would guess that it's the same problem we've always had on this forum. Women leave the forum or only lurk because the threads become too harsh and contentious, much like this one with all the name calling and moralizing. Or there is an excess of the "I'm always right-itis," which can be tiresome. Add to that we are sometimes "oversensitive."

And if you don't believe me when I say I've heard other women grumbling about mixed gender meets and seeding, go ask some yourself. The only male who's offered anything cogent as opposed to hostile was gdanner. Unfortunately, his point that he's a small guy swimming against big guys is only magnified further when you have a small woman swimming against big guys. I think it's pretty rich that all the men here are telling me, the only woman poster, how I should feel about mixed gender meets.

In terms of other sandbagging, I just don't care what people seed themselves at and/or whether they sandbag. Worry about yourself and just race.

couldbebetterfly
June 3rd, 2011, 04:03 PM
Perhaps no other female agrees with you.




I'm female and in total agreement with Fort.

I'm a D-type swimmer who is too lazy to lift.

:popcorn:

Chris Stevenson
June 3rd, 2011, 04:21 PM
And I'm still somewhat unclear on why sandbagging kills timelines in the non-distance events. I think split requests would be far worse offenders.

There was an early post in this thread that actually did timeline comparisons for meets seeded by a variety of methods, which gave some idea of the "sandbag effect."

Imagine two hypothetical meets. Meet A is perfectly seeded where the lanes finish exactly as expected: lane 4 wins every heat, lane 5 is second, and so on. This meet maximizes the amount of competition between participants, the amount of clear water (in the aggregate), and results in the shortest possible timeline (especially if mixed genders and age groups are used).

Meet B is randomly seeded: you might have 20-something speedsters like Paragon Jazz next to 80-year-old great-grandmothers. In terms of competition and timeline, this is a much worse scenario. It also results in less clear water in the aggregate, though obviously some people (the aforementioned paragon, for example) might be quite well off.

Neither meet will either happen, but the more accurately a person's seed times predict his/her actual performance, the more like situation A the meet will be. Sandbagging moves the situation closer to B.

MOST split requests are not of the type that I think you mean, where someone does the first part of the race fast and then goes easy. The vast majority are normal swims where someone realizes that the first part of the race was actually a pretty competitive swim, and the swimmer is unsure of swimming that shorter event in competition. So s/he will submit a split request. The only time it costs is that of the volunteers who have to process the request.


Actually I do sandbag, quite often. But that's very sweet of you.

Unfortunately, "Paragon of Swimming Virtue" doesn't quite fit in the character limit for user titles, so I had to abbreviate.

Does "sandbagging weasel" fit, then? Just wondering... :bolt:

Disclaimer: the above statement was meant as a joke. And there was no moral judgment intended by any part of this post. If you believe you detect a whiff of moral certitude, consider instead the possibility that it is time to do laundry. No puppies were harmed in the construction of this post.

Atlantic
June 3rd, 2011, 04:44 PM
Female POV here...

It is very difficult to swim in lanes 1 or 6 next to a heat of guys. You boys create a lot more turbulence than the ladies. At a recent meet, I was in the 50 bk, in lane 1, swimming against all men. It was rough, I about drowned from the wake that was created. My time stunk, but I'm not blaming only the wake, others factors contributed to my bad swim, I would just like to compete in fairer waters. Hope that makes sense.

I'll admit that I've sandbagged, but only because of having back-to-back events at small meets. Needed to space out 3 events. Not sure how much it helped me, still died after my third swim. Yikes.

My only question is - is there a term for people who enter way too fast of a time at a meet like Nationals, get seeded in the "championship" heat of their age group and swim a ton slower in all their events? Myself or other swimmers in that age group could have benefited from being in that last heat?

I'm guessing it's impossible to make everyone happy, but I still love USMS soooo much.

Have a great weekend, swimmers!

TRYM_Swimmer
June 3rd, 2011, 04:51 PM
My only question is - is there a term for people who enter way too fast of a time at a meet like Nationals, get seeded in the "championship" heat of their age group and swim a ton slower in all their events? Myself or other swimmers in that age group could have benefited from being in that last heat?



Dreamer?

ElaineK
June 3rd, 2011, 04:55 PM
Disclaimer: the above statement was meant as a joke. And there was no moral judgment intended by any part of this post. If you believe you detect a whiff of moral certitude, consider instead the possibility that it is time to do laundry. No puppies were harmed in the construction of this post.

:lmao: Thanks for leaving the puppies out of it, Chris!

As for the speculators out there wondering why more women aren't weighing in on this thread, I can't speak for them, however, I will admit, I have been :Lurking: . Why? Let me count the ways!
1. Getting shredded in the tech suit thread, after Nationals, last year. (I don't particularly enjoy it when the claws come out at me. I'm on the forums for enjoyment and to learn.)
2. Getting shredded for the appearance of my posts, which, by the way, will not be changing. Ever*. (*Unless Jim takes my font, color, and Smilies away!)

I think I'll join 'Fly in :popcorn:. 'Fly, shall I bring the :chug:? Cheers!

If anybody really cares about my opinion (and, I'm sure none of you really do...), send me a PM. Meanwhile, those of like mind out there on the forums, you know who you are... ;)

pwb
June 3rd, 2011, 05:02 PM
I don't think I've made myself clear enough here: I posit that "sandbagging" is neither immoral or unethical or unsportsmanlike (or un-anything-else-you-high-horses-think-is-good) for the very precise reason* that none of us, not a single darn one of us (no matter how "right" we think we are and how "wrong" we think others are) truly knows how their performance will pan out and therefore how close their entry time will be to their final time. I enter my meets as soon as I know I can go to the meet, often weeks in advance. Even though I try to enter likely times, life happens either before the meet or during the meet and my result differs what whatever projected reality I had used to create the entry time.

Stop getting your boxers in a wad over this issue and JUST RACE.

Fort, while I have come out in favor of mixed gender and mixed age heats, I completely understand your point about racing next to big guys with big wakes, especially at taper meets. Like Greg, I had the fortune of racing next to guys like Jeff Dash or Paul Smith ... I'm a big guy myself, but those guys put off some serious wave action. If the meet directors aren't following the rules to seed women appropriately, you gotta do what you gotta do.

Kurt, I still think you should bag on Auburn and come to Mission Viejo instead. I'm definitely not going to be in Auburn, but knowing I'd have a good race on my hands in Mission might motivate me to get there.

* see U.S. Masters Swimming Discussion Forums - View Single Post - No sandbagging: It's the law

qbrain
June 3rd, 2011, 05:03 PM
Perhaps they don't like being edged out of a top ten time by someone who knowingly doesn't follow the rules.

Just because others cheat doesn't let you off the hook.

I pulled The Fortresses seed times and final times from Nationals. I don't see any sandbagging.

Are you confusing Kurt with Fort, or did you miss that the rule was limited to Nationals?