View Full Version : Pacific Masters SCY Championships

March 29th, 2002, 01:03 AM
The Pacific Masters Swimming 2002 Short Course Yards Championships will be held at the University of California Santa Cruz April 12, 13, and 14. The postmark deadline is March 30 and must arrive no later than April 3rd.

Santa Cruz is a beautiful scenic town on the California coast just north of Montery and about 70 miles south of San Francisco. There are many reasonably priced hotels near the pool. There are also many unreasonably priced hotels there also.

The meet sheet is at

There are many Pacific Masters swimmers who are in New Zealand competing at the FINA World Masters Champioships, so it might be the year to sneak a medal.

(It the Championships have less than 700 swimmers entered, it will be considered a small championship) :D

Pacific Masters
(Former center of Masters Racing) :p

March 29th, 2002, 11:39 AM
The "new center of masters swimming" is figuring out that 700 entrants is about the limit for a 3-day meet in a single course.


March 29th, 2002, 07:54 PM
You are probably right 700 is about swimmers on a single course, but we will have the same basic facility a 50 M x 25 yard pool and get a much higher yield.

Differences between "center of Masters Racing" and "former Center"

Courses on 50 meter pool (NEM) 1 eight lane (Pac) 2 seven lane
warm up (NEM) 6 lanes (PAC) 1 lane (but it is a wide lane) :D
Number of events swimmer can enter
individual (NEM) 4 (PAC) 7 (five on one day)
relays (NEM) 2 (PAC) 5
distance swimming (NEM) either 1650 or 1000 (PAC) can enter both
check in (NEM) one hour b4 start (PAC) 30 min b4 start
(NEM) must check in by 9:30 (PAC) checkin up to 30 min before start
Of course one can only play the cards they have been delt. I would try to survey the membership about what they felt about swimming in two courses. If the six warm up lanes have starting blocks, I would run two six lane courses - women events on both courses then men events. Yes they are not equal. Life is unfair - shut up and swim - you can be meet director next year).

No matter if you are running two course or one course, your starter and ref are going to run your time line. If you want to try to keep the time line under control (this is for large meets) if a swimmer does not show up at the blocks at the start of the event either no calling for the swimmer or call the for swimmer once - and that is quick call).

Swimmer misses his/her heat or is not seeded - Swimmers fault: sorry about that, we are not going to put you in. Meet Managements fault: try to put the swimmer in an earlier heat if swimmer is agreeable or know how to split the heat and do it fast.

Swimmers talk to each other and if meet management is allowing a good excuse to get a swimmer in another heat, you will hear some very creative excuses. When we take a tough line, much fewer excuses.

With a dive over start, and a starter and ref who a running the timeline, you can get a heat off in a good start in about 20 seconds after the final swimmer of the previous heat touches the wall. It is very easy to let it slip to 30 to 40 seconds, multiply out by the hundreds of heats you have and you lengthen the time line a lot.

good luck Rick and Bob

known for sticking his nose in where it does not belong
consultant for large meets and available next weekend if you want to pay my air fare. lol
member - former "Center of Masters Racing"

March 31st, 2002, 03:41 PM
I thought we were both looking at SCY meets in the immediate future... not LCM meets.

The New England SCY meet is at Harvard, which (for SCY) has an8-lane competition course and a 6-lane warmup course (which is too shallow for blocks). Couple of corrections on your comparisons. :)

* NEM meet check-in is one hour before the event. There's no absolute cut-off in the morning. Complete rolling check-in. (We find that unless heat sheets are posted 45 minutes +/- before the event, people start getting really anxious about heats and lanes, etc.)

* Maximum events. For NEM SCY, maximum of 10 individual events for the week-end. Friday you can swim 1650 _or_ 1000 and/or 400 IM, and then max of 4 events Saturday and Sunday. This year, you can swim all five relays if you want.

Oh, plus, we have our "ocean" area available for warmup also, which is the 30 yard x 20 yard space between the competition and warmup courses. So we may end up with 6 25-yard lanes and 3-4 30-yard lanes.

Last year, we were able to get it down to about 10 seconds between heats. It takes an on-the-ball person running the timing system, mostly.

There's a new pool being built at a technical school just down the river from Harvard that will be capable of running two 25-yard courses. We're definitely going to be investigating the possibility of running this meet there in the future, to run on two courses. Unfortunately, for LCM, there's no such thing as a facility with two 50-meter courses in the northeast.

NEM SCY Champs Operations Director

April 1st, 2002, 09:03 AM
You raise an interesting point regarding two courses versus one course. Obviously for meets with 2000 participants there isn't a real choice. However for regional championship meets with 600-1000 participants its an interesting question. A few years ago, we did run a NE SCY Championship meet with two 8 lane courses at Brown. We had around 500 participants and the timeline was quite short by local standards. However, I did receive quite a few complaints about how the "meet was run too fast" and that teams complained they couldn't watch their teammates race in the other course.

My question is whether anyone has actually run a regional competition where you run two 8 lane courses for distance events and single 10+ course for non-distance events?

Philip Arcuni
April 15th, 2002, 04:03 PM
Congratulations to Michael and all the others that helped to put on an excellent meet; to us swimmers it was well run and a lot of fun. And thanks to whatever power made the weather perfect - warm and sunny. It was expecially nice to step off the pool deck for a spectacular view of Monterey Bay.

According to the Pacific Masters web site www.pacificmasters.org the meet had 'over 800 swimmers' and 13 national records, two of which were relays. Yes, I think NEM is correct - their championship is the largest and best meet east of California!

April 17th, 2002, 06:43 AM
For Bob,

To answer your question ("My question is whether anyone has actually run a regional competition where you run two 8 lane courses for distance events and single 10+ course for non-distance events?"), we just held the NW Zone Championship meet at the Federal Way/King County Aquatic Center. When we hold our Zone/LMSC champs there, we typically have 250-300 swimmers (278 this year) and hold all of our events in one course except we use both courses for 500s and above.

For the most part, that works well for us. This year, we started off with the 1000 (Sat.) and the 500 (Sun.) and were ready for the next events after about an hour. The flip side is that it doubles your volunteer requirements. When we tried to hold the 1650 at the end of the meet, we needed to ask for volunteer timers just so that we could save a half-hour (we scratched down to three heats total).

I liked your story about the Brown meet. I'll admit that I don't run my timeline as "efficiently" as I possibly could for a regional meet because doing so makes the meet run "too fast", but I'll only do that here. In Boston and Santa Cruz and at Nationals, you have to be max-efficient or else you'll have very long days.

April 18th, 2002, 02:16 AM
Pacific Masters Swimming held its Short Course Yards Championships last weekend, April 12,13,and 14 on the campus of the University of California Santa Cruz. This is the largest short course yards meet held west of the Charles River.

The meet was blessed with great weather. 823 swimmers competed and the meet recorded 3214 splashes with 314 relay entries. Swimmers from 50 teams competed for the team high point awards.

Thirteen National Records were broken. Laura Val after aging up for long course last year, aged up for short course this year and continues her assault on the womens 50-54 swimming records. In the 1650 Free on Friday she got a twofer. She broke the 1000 yard record on the way out to breaking the 1650. She also broke the standards in the 50 back, 100 back and 100 free.

Other National records were broken Alan Cartwright 60-64(400 IM and 200 fly), Jae Howell (200 Breast), Lee Rider 45-49 (50 Breast), Bob Strand 55-59 (50 Breast), Margery Sharp 85-89 (500 Fr), WCM 65+ (400 Mixed Free Relay), WCM 55+ (400 Medley Relay).

University of San Francisco Masters won its tenth straight Large team short course yards title. The team winners include:
Large Team
1. USF
2. Walnut Creek Masters
3. San Mateo Master Marlins

Medium Team
1. Menlo Masters
2. Manatee Aquatic Masters
3. Burlingame Masters Watersports

Small Team
1. The Olympic Club
2. Rolling Hills Mud Sharks
3. Rinconada Masters

During a break on Sunday, Pacific recognized Laura Val and Robert Strand as 2001 Pacific Masters Swimmers of the Year. Laura won it for her awesome swimming during 2001 meters season, setting the world standard in 13 Long Course events and eight short course meters events (women 50-54).

Bob Strand set the world standard in all the men's 55-59 Breaststroke events SCY, LCM and SCM.

Thanks to Meet director Joel Wilson, Meet Operations Paul Wrangell, Meet Referee Bud Meyer (also known as Debbie's dad) and the entire Santa Cruz Masters for putting on the meet.

pacific masters swimming
still the "1"
:cool: <= this is a smilie with goggles isnt it?

April 18th, 2002, 10:04 PM
The meet was blessed with great weather. 823 swimmers competed and the meet recorded 3214 splashes with 314 relay entries.

Does the 3214 figure include the relays, or just individual splashes?

I did a final report of the numbers for the NEM meet a couple weeks back, and we had:

1188 splashes + 185 scratches + 40 no shows = 1413 entries

1652 splashes + 292 scratches + 69 no shows = 2013 entries

2840 splashes + 477 scratches + 109 no shows = 3426 entries

326 splashes + 2 scratches + 2 no shows = 330 entries

3166 splashes + 479 scratches + 111 no shows = 3756 entries

That doesn't include perhaps 100 entries on 12 or so people that were pulled from the meet before we started... we just deleted the entries entirely because we refunded the entry fees.


April 19th, 2002, 12:13 AM
At the very bottom of

Scratches 813 328 485
no shows
Actual Swims 3252 1535 1717

which means that the entries were
entries 4065 1863 2202

There was also a line that says disqualification. I am not sure if that is a deduction from actual swims or not. The total DQs is 41

I just assume that the relays is the net number of relays. Relays are entered the day of the meet up to about 2 hours before the start of the first heat of relays. There were few relay no shows.

The program that tracks the meet, SAMMS, is primarily geared for age group swimming, which is why scratchs and no shows are broken out. A no show is just shown as a scratch.

I just assume that the program has correctly totaled the number of entries and scratchs. I am not going to count the number of entries (well I could take the information from the results then do a line count, but I am feeling lazy).

On Friday the meet opened with the 1650 at 10:20am, the last heat of 1650 finished a little over five hours later around 3:30. On Saturday the first event was the 1000 free, which finished about 1 pm. The 1650 and the 1000 (and all the events) were run on two courses. After the distance events the meet seemed to move very quickly. The 50's took about 20 minutes from the start of the first heat to the end of the fastest heat.

One of the things being considered is the mix the mens and womens 1650, 1000 and 500 and run the entire events by time. This would save a lot of time as you dont have two very slow heats.

We are always looking for ways to run the meet more efficiently. One way is to have dive over starts (idea taken from NEM).


April 20th, 2002, 04:53 PM

First, congratulations on a successful meet. Bet everyone involved in happy its over.

Second, dive-over-starting works real well--especially the second year. People that complained the first time around really like the way it works. They find it easy to anticipate the flow of events and we didn't have problems with no shows.

Third, in fairness, you were one of the people that convinced me that positive check-in can work. (Ed Gendreau was the first to try it in New England).

Fourth, great to see that you using this forum for post-meet summaries. I think it vitally important to improve meet promotion.

Lastly, why don't you send us your .CL2 file and we'll score Pacific Masters meet versus NE meet just for the fun of it? We've had this friendly bantering about the "largest" meet (I think we might judged just about even in terms of splashes/relays).

I have an idea that this might be an interesting way to promote regional meets (see USMS long-term planning) and might also give us a way to be more aware of what's happening across the country. I know that NEMs will come out in even bigger numbers if they have a chance to eventually "defeat" Pacific Masters in a "electronic" super-regional competition (shades of mythical HS championship?).

April 22nd, 2002, 01:41 AM

Well the meet may have finished, but the meet is not over until all the paperwork is finished. Luckily, my part of the meet is over.

I would love to send a .cl2 file except that we dont use Hy-Tech for meet management. We use a program that a local vendor developed.

Just for the fun of it, I tried to score the 50-54 age group as we are both in that age group. NEM has some awesome swims.

If anyone wanted to run up the scores it would have to be a tedious hand job. It might be difficult to score as we both had different rules for entering events.

In the distance events- the 1650 and the 1000, Pacific looked like we had more swimmer in the top ten positions. Pacific also lets distance swimmers in both long distance events.

If I read the NEM meet sheet, and judging by past history there is no guarentee of that, a NEM swimmer could enter 10 individual events. Pacific has a limit of seven events per meet. So with the same number of good swimmers, NEM has an almost 50% advantage.

I think it might be fun to score. We can work on the details. (If the NEM meet gets much bigger, what are you going to do? run two courses or longer days
:cool: )


April 22nd, 2002, 10:26 AM

What kind of text output can you generate on your end?

I've talked to some other "regional" championship meet directors about submitting results in a common format for purposes of "scoring" and also for compiling certain performance lists. The objective is to look at developing some new "marketing" material to further build interest in such meets.

Based on the meet feedback we received from the 2002 Championships it's pretty obvious that next year's meet will be bigger (700+). We have a few options. We can use some additional lanes in the "shallow" end of the 50 meter course. Another option is to use another 50 meter pool in the area. We might then run 2 8-9 lane courses for distance event and 1 10 lane course for all other events.

Meet participants appreciate shorter timelines. (I was especially glad to be at Zones with two 8 lane courses and 420 participants. We finished before 1:00 pm on both days). At the same time, we get complaints regarding two courses of competition. People feel that we lose some of the "high enery meet ambiance" when running two courses. Perhaps a two course set-up for distance and 10 lane course for other distances will work for meet up to 800 participants.


PS: Yes, the NEM male 50-54 age group was very competitive this year much to my regret.

May 3rd, 2002, 10:56 PM

I only have text files that have been generated by the local meet management system and these files are in two columns. (The good part is that it follows a column format).

I might be fun to have a series of meets that are all on the same day. We are working on trying to get an SDIF file from the meets, but it may take a while.

We would have to set up a way so that everyone can compete in the same number of events.

I hope you are able to expand your meet. I wonder how big a meet can be. At some point swimmers will just leave for home if it goes to long. In Pacific, we have found a the limit to be around 900 swimmers. A meet with 900 swimmers makes for a very long day (even when running two courses, but then we let the distance swimmers swim both the 1000 and 1650 which does stretch the day).

I am interested in how to make our meets more efficient. Run men and women together in all events 400 yards or longer? I would be interesting to swim against all your lane mates.


May 6th, 2002, 09:56 AM

We should at least agree upon some common format for results and then can "score" the various regional championship meets. Why not use Hy-tek? Hasn't USMS "standardized" on this software for USMS Nationals?

What is the optimum size of a regional championship meet? You're probably not far off. I'm thinking that around 1,000 is the upper limit BUT you need to have two courses, positive check-in for all events AND perfect dive-over starting. Our members will pretty much tolerate a large meet IF it is very well run and finishes around 2-3 pm. Once we start to get past 4:00 pm people start complaining. I'm pretty sure that the NEM meet management team that ran 2002 SCY Championships can handle a meet with 1,000 swimmers, two courses and 350+ relays and finish within the majic 2-3 pm window. Rick Osterberg has saved the timeline from this year's championship (it's on the www.swimindex.com/meets website ) and could probably calculate how much earlier we would have finished with two courses.

The problem with swimming the distance events with men/women combined is that the time difference between check-in and when you actually swim becomes fairly long. (This was an obvious problem with NEs this year since we used only one course for the 1650). Even with two courses I still think you're better off swimming women then men. I also think its a real time saver to limit swimmers to either the 1650 or 1000.

I'm going to start a thread on regional championship meets once I get some more time. Unlike Nationals, which pretty much have limited prospects for future growth, the Regional Championship meets could become a very attractive alternative to Nationals for a lot of USMS swimmers. We do need to promote them properly (get them all up to the maximum size of 900-1,000) and make sure that the quality of the meet is equal to or better than found at current Nationals. This is the kind of discussion I'd like to see get started here sometime soon.

In the meantime, NE SCY will eventually move to a two course venue (maybe in 2003 no later than 2004) and we'll be prepared to "challenge" our big brother to the West in a cross-country regional championship.

May 8th, 2002, 10:53 AM
One other thing that could make things _very_ interesting is to run the meets on a concurrent week-end, with the same format. Hy-Tek allows for running one meet in two different pools... which is easily extended to running one meet in two different facilties, I think. To be really neat, we could set things up so that the west coast meet ran 8am-3pm and the east coast meet ran 11am-6pm so that the events were happening at nearly the same time. With a little bit of Internet wizardry, we could have combined results posted at both facilities as soon as the last heat was finished in either time zone.