View Poll Results: Should FINA ban federations for masters involved in non-FINA events?

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Thread: FINA monopolizing Masters Swimming

  1. #1
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    Exclamation FINA monopolizing Masters Swimming

    I have been a competitive swimmer in Canada since 1961, and always respected the good work FINA has done to standardize the rules and regulations in competitive swimming. I now live in Costa Rica and participate as a masters swimmer.

    Globally, masters swimming and aquatics is big money and FINA now recognizes this. In fact to monopolize all international competitive aquatics, FINA has now secretly given themselves the authority to punish international masters competitions held outside of the FINA umbrella, in that any federation(s) involved will be penalized and all of their athletes prevented from participating in future FINA sanctioned events, including the Olympics!

    This was the case at the LatyCar Masters Championships in Sao Paulo, Brazil in 2005, when FINA dropped this bomb shell just before the competition was about to take place after two years of planning and promotion for the event. FINA's actions have effectively brought, through scare tactics, an end to a wonderful non-profit bi-annual fun international event since 1991, the LatyCar Masters Aquatics Championships covering Latin America and the Caribbean, an event originally founded by non-profit LatyCar due to the lack of enthusiasm from FINA in the first place!

    Masters athletes just want to stay healthy and exercise, and enjoy the sport, and meet other masters competitors from around the world. I think it is immoral for FINA, a profit-making organization, to penalize all levels of an entire federation we are affiliated with if we compete in an international non-FINA sanctioned event. Why should the younger age group federation competitors all the way up to Olympic caliber competitors be penalized because of the actions of masters competitors within their federation? We are 'over the hill', and not involved in the intense level of competition of these younger competitors, however we do not wish to ever stand in their way. This is like apples and oranges.

    Things are a bit different here in the LatyCar region than the USA, and international competitions are expensive to attend especially considering the low regional wages, and require a great deal of dedication to your sport. Yet every LatyCar competition since 1991 has had hundreds and even more than a thousand participants.

    In a desperate yet bold attempt to counteract the needlessly greedy and immoral actions by FINA, the Sao Paulo Declaration in 2005 was overwhelmingly approved during the LatyCar event by the representatives of all participating countries, that the World Aquatic Masters Organization (WAMO) would be borne, and operate international events outside of FINA's control. For more info on the background of this, go to http://www.wamo.info and read about the history of the Sao Paulo Declaration. It is quite eye-opening to read about the apparent lies and deception of FINA in an attempt to monopolize international masters aquatics throughout the world, and thus all the money generated.

    However, WAMO has had a difficult time getting off the ground because of the fear of unjust repercussions by FINA against our younger competitors, elite athletes, as well as those masters competitors who still wanted to attend the FINA sanctioned World Masters Aquatics Championships in Stanford this year and Perth in 2008.

    If any people on the planet refuse to be bullied, and held at ransom, especially by the French, it is the Americans. FINA has tied your hands also, though you may not realize it. Our fun and exciting LatyCar Championships have been needlessly taken away from us without FINA providing an alternative event for the masters aquatics athletes in our region of the world. Americans participating in any international masters events without FINA sanctioning will be equally penalized by the immoral and greedy dictators at FINA. Just try it and see!

    Would it be possible at the convention to discuss the monolopistic and economically motivated approach FINA has taken regarding international masters aquatics, and see if there is any consensus or agreement within the USMS to our plight here in Latin America and the Caribbean, and a workable solution? FINA didn't want to support masters aquatics in the LatyCar region in the beginning, now wants to take our great LatyCar away, while not providing an alternative event. FINA is like a spoiled child who has taken his ball home, so no one else can play.

    FINA would begin to self-destruct under its own rules and greed if WAMO was adopted as a legitimate masters competition alternative by the USMS.

    FINA's greed would also be apparent when the IOC discovers that FINA was preventing legitimate athletes from around the globe from competing, simply because of FINA's selfish attempt to keep control of all competitions and all the money ever generated through competitive international aquatics.

    FINA is stepping beyond its legitimate and moral bounds, and is ruining masters aquatics on a global scale. USMS is the most powerful masters organization in the world, and would be an excellent ally to go up against the secretive FINA dictatorship.
    Last edited by EricRobinson; August 31st, 2006 at 11:56 PM.

  2. #2
    Very Active Member geochuck's Avatar
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    Fina in control, the guys who can't control cheating judges in sports that require judges. What is the world coming to. Referees who cheat in sports like Basket Ball, Hockey and Soccer.
    Keep it simple George Park
    Swimsuit Sale http://www.swimdownhill.com/index.html

  3. #3
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    Are you confusing FINA with the International Olympic Committee (IOC)? Of course, they both have their problems.

    FINA governs international aquatic sports only and yes all of those sports require some sort of judging. The N stands for Natation (French for swimming).
    Mary Pohlmann

  4. #4
    Very Active Member geochuck's Avatar
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    More than likely they are both crazy to deal with.
    Keep it simple George Park
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  5. #5
    Moderator Rob Copeland's Avatar
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    Eric,

    An interesting perspective…

    And while I can’t speak about Masters Swimming in Costa Rica, I can assure you that FINA has NOT attempted to monopolize competitive Masters Aquatics in the USA. Every year there are hundreds of events (YMCA, State Games, Senior Games, local events, etc) that are not monopolized by FINA. And so far these have all been conducted without any of or members being threatened with expulsion or worse.

    In the USA and through USMS we encourage these activities as additional avenues for our USMS members and for the population at large to participate in the greatest sport, swimming.

    As for discussing Masters Swimming in the America’s at our convention… absolutely yes, our international committee will be talking about a number of international topics, this I’m sure will be raised. Our ASUA liaison will also be reporting on swimming in the Americas. And I’m sure there will be quite a few hallway conversations.

    Rob Copeland
    President – United States Masters Swimming

  6. #6
    Very Active Member Matt S's Avatar
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    Haven't We Gone Over This?

    I seem to remember a similar discussion about this same meet a few months ago. Although I can't remember the specifics, I do recall that things did not appear to be as black and white as was first alleged.

    Rob was being meticulously polite. He simply provided some counter-examples within the U.S. that indicate FINA is not pursuing some evil, monopolistic conspiracy here, and invited those who felt aggrieved to raise the issue for discussion at the USMS Convention. Please indulge me as I am less polite. I have to wonder what is the hidden aggenda behind continuing to bring up the same allegations of a rather unlikely conspiracy theory. No, pointing me to a one-sided web site which could say anything does not constitute proof.

    My mind is open, but I don't find naked allegations all that persuasive.

    Matt

  7. #7
    Very Active Member LindsayNB's Avatar
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    Matt, for FINA's position on this see:

    http://fina.org/master/masters_index.htm

    My recollection is that in the end the dispute basically came down to a question of the meet name, once the organizers agreed to remove "All Americas" from the meet name everything settled out. Personally I do find the powers and penalties that FINA has granted itself wrt masters swimmers heavy-handed and excessive as exemplified by the above page. On the other hand do we want someone else organizing an alternate "World Masters Swimming Championship"?

    I would assume that all the examples cited by Rob have sanctions from FINA affiliated bodies.

  8. #8
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    Unhappy

    Facts are facts, we have lost our wonderful LatyCar out of fears from promised FINA repercussions. As I delve deeper into this, I am realizing that only participants and their federations in non-sanctioned international FINA events are penalized. As a result, there are no future international masters competitions planned in our huge region of some thirty six countries, and a catch basin of nearly a billion people. Even FINA isn't even making an effort to sanction an event, and prefer to just force us out of the water. How depressing, we need the USMS support to put FINA in its place.

  9. #9
    Very Active Member michaelmoore's Avatar
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    Eric, an interesting polemic, but I thing you have a couple of your facts incorrect.

    "Globally, masters swimming and aquatics is big money and FINA now recognizes this. "

    Masters swimming in not big money for FINA. There is no TV revenue, there are no ad contracts that cover the Masters championships, the only FINA sponsors that has an agreement with FINA about Masters is Mikasa, where the Water Polo Balls have to be Mikasa (Mikasa suplies the balls).

    FINA has now secretly given themselves the authority

    And hid it in the FINA Handbook that is published and distributed to all the Federations and is sold to anyone who wants to purchase it. You have to give the gnomes of Switzerland credit for hiding it.

    in 2005, when FINA dropped this bomb

    Actually it was ASUA, the regional group that US Aquatic Sports belongs to.

    it is immoral for FINA, a profit-making organization

    FINA is a non-profit organization.

    IIt is quite eye-opening to read about the lies and deception of FINA in an attempt to monopolize masters aquatics throughout the world, and thus all the money generated.

    How is FINA getting all this money from Masters? Each federation pays FINA 200SF a year. The US pays the same amount as Lesotho. Where is this money being generated. I sure did not see it and I ran the XI FINA World Masters Championships.

    to go up against the secretive FINA dictatorship.

    I guess you dont want to hear about the FINA Congress where all federations have two votes. They will vote for the FINA Bureau, the president, the secretary, and the treasurer. Those people will chose the executive director.

    As a result, there are no future international masters competitions planned in our huge region of some thirty six countries, and a catch basin of nearly a billion people.

    I guess there are none if you dont include the ASUA Masters Championshps (The first one in Santo Domingo was not advertised very well and few attended. But on the other hand, I have a second place medal) and the South American Championships (last year held in Santiago, I think this year they will be held in Sao Paulo).

    Even FINA isn't even making an effort to sanction an event,

    It is not up to FINA, it is up to ASUA.

    we need the USMS support to put FINA in its place.

    Aint gonna happen. But I could be wrong.
    michael moore

  10. #10
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    Dear Mr.Moore,

    It was an honor that you responded to my forum input. First of all let me congratulate you on the excellent results from your wonderfully orchestrated FINA World Masters Aquatic Championships at Stanford. My, and many others, hat goes off to you.

    Regarding your response to my forum input, you certainly can skate circles around my lack of political experience in this. But one thing I do know is the difference between right and wrong, and Mr.Moore, I think are defending the wrong.

    I can see I already made some mistakes, that FINA did sanction LatyCar until and including Barbados in 2003 (where I swam) and Sao Paulo in 2005, but then FINA/ASUA reneged on the sanctioning of Sao Paulo after LatyCar had the sanctioning documents in their hands, in a very untimely manner after registrations to compete were closed. Instead of FINA/ASUA trying to find a compromise and work with and build upon the past success of LatyCar, and the negotiations that were agreed upon between LatyCar and the late president of AUSA Jerry Olson, FINA/AUSA seemed to want it all. Their actions were for themselves and their accumulation of power, and not with heart or concern for the participants. They have left the All Americas/LatyCar and any federation or individual associated with LatyCar/All Americas, including age group children, elite athletes and masters competitors, in a state of disbelief, and scared to continue for fear of retribution in the form of international disqualification by the whims of FINA, shame on them!

    Also, not many would believe a word you are saying when it comes to the future earning potential that will be generated by the four major aquatic sports, swimming (including open water), diving, water polo and synchronized, at all different age categories and skill levels, world championships, Olympics, etc. Please sir, you know that it’s a question of time and the roadwork is being prepared and that FINA is eyeing the $$$ AND it does charge for the bidding, I do believe that USMS had to fork out over $25-30,000 just to bid PLUS all first class airplane rides, five star hotels, meals, etc….!!

    Sir, are you going to publish on the USMS website the entire AUDITED (independent like KPMG, etc.) balance sheet of the FINA Worlds @ Stanford Championships…? I don’t mean “just” USMS’s portion, I mean ALL of it…?

    You corrected me that AUSA is not FINA but isn't ASUA the agent or representative of FINA, and isn't the president of ASUA a member of the FINA Bureau, please…! Why do you need to cloud the real issue with politics if you are defending what's right and moral?

    Regardless, even when I said FINA isn't even making an effort to sanction an event, you replied that it is not up to FINA, it is up to ASUA.

    You have not read the FINA Masters main page, it IS up to FINA… if FINA makes the rules THEN they are in control, not ASUA, unless of course FINA now delegates it to ASUA, however that particular president has an immense conflict of interest and obviously does NOT have athletes interest in mind simply having written that less that factual bombshell to all federations last year… heck, just ask the Canadians… the Mexicans… the Argentinians, the Brazilians, the…..

    If the FINA Handbook with its intension to enforce all its rules you mention has been available for years, why did FINA wait until the last minute to completely destroy the 8th consecutive bi-annual All Americas/LatyCar Championships in Sao Paulo Brazil after the participant registration had already been closed. I'll tell you why, because your Dominican Republic event was advertised thoroughly, unlike you say, however it was up against a great event: the ALL AMERICAS/LatyCar event. After FINA saw only 135 competitors show up, they finally decided to do the EASIEST thing: ban LatyCar no-matter-what and claim it had no sanction (which it did have)… now is that a sportsmanlike thing to do…?

    To my untrained eye, isn't FINA acting like a spoiled child walking home with his ball so no one else can play, what unsportsmanlike conduct from a respected sports authority and international judge of aquatics. Where is the integrity from an organization that should be emulating good and decent behavior to our younger swimmers, again, shame on FINA!

    Mr.Moore, you jumped on my case when I mentioned what appeared to be a secretive FINA dictatorship saying that all federations have two votes, etc.

    I was told you were present at the Congress at Stanford…???!?!
    You call that ‘democracy’… motions put forth and approved ‘en block’ without any input… please sir, there were several happy attendees that were impressed with the quickness of such ‘democratic’ approvals, in fact most (if not ALL) of USMS’s motions were stomped on without even a chance for FINA to squeal in pain..!!

    When I mentioned that there are no future international masters competitions planned in our huge region of some thirty six countries, and a catch basin of nearly a billion people to fill the All Americas/LatyCar void in 2007 created by FINA/AUSA, your response was that there was the (complete washout) Dominican Republic meet and the Santiago, Chile (??) event, both last year. The future isn't the same as the past. And I see no mention on the ASUA website about any future competition, Sao Paulo or elsewhere, that you weren't sure about.

    I understand that LatyCar has, since 2000 been trying to make a strategic alliance with FINA for the Americas and that it ‘almost’ happened but the then president, Jerry Olson passed away and the new one has chosen the war-path route.

    It’s easier and better for us all, for FINA to sit down with the experts: USMS and LatyCar and come up with a WINNING formula for everyone, not just FINA, and NOT a fight which just puts mud on us athletes…as we're not allowed in the pool to wash it off!! nor promotes forums such as this one!!

    When I said we need the USMS support to put FINA in its place, your response was 'Aint gonna happen. But I could be wrong.'

    Well… if USMS does come to the rescue –or arbitrate- with an example of their democratic approach and open congress and wanting to give an example of an excellent Masters “formula” including a balance of power… FABULOUS…
    What can I say to you, Mr. Moore, don’t you see this benefit to all masters? How can you actually write “Aint gonna happen…” or has FINA ‘planning’ already been set into motion with you…digging their bunkers deep for the long haul?

    The USMS formula is an excellent one to emulate, in fact possibly the best in the world, so applying the structure in the different scales according to need, would be super. Balance of power is necessary for good development, I’m sure you’ll agree with me.
    I hope you consider it a compliment that we would like a USMS emulated system over a FINA threat system, which just keeps festering.

    Respectfully yours

    Eric Robinson
    Canadian
    Costa Rica masters swimmer
    (and probably in deep do-do the next FINA event I compete in!)

  11. #11
    Pretty Lethargic Swimmer mbmg3282's Avatar
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    It would appear that the ASUA Masters Technical Committee will be working towards hosting the Pan American Masters Championships every two years. There is a mention of this in the ASUA delegates report in the convention packet.

    So, there will be future meets for the folks in the America's to participate in. Although it is not called LatyCar, it will serve the same purpose won't it? Hopefully, this will build on the fun and competition that was present in the LatyCar meets that you attended.
    Mark Gill

  12. #12
    Very Active Member michaelmoore's Avatar
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    FINA/ASUA reneged on the sanctioning of Sao Paulo after LatyCarIt is the BrazillianFederation that sanctions meets, not FINA or ASUA. The XI FINA World Masters Championships was sanctioned by Pacific Masters Swimming for United States Masters Swimming, which is United States Aquatic Sports National Governing Body for Masters swimming.

    Also, not many would believe a word you are saying when it comes to the future earning potential that will be generated by the four major aquatic sports, swimming (including open water), diving, water polo and synchronized, Whether people believe me or not is not a concern of mine. I was giving you an informed opinion about where I the general profitability of Masters World Championships and its relationship to FINA in general. If you think it is so profitable, perhaps you can share your speculation.

    do believe that USMS had to fork out over $25-30,000 just to bid PLUS all first class airplane rides, five star hotels, meals, etc It is no secret that USMS paid a bid fee of $25,000. However, if you count that the FINA Masters Technical Committee met in Palo Alto in November of last year and FINA paid for the transportation and the lodging, there goes most of the $25,000.

    The Organizing Committee paid for the FINA Masters Technical Committee to come to Palo Alto, we did not pay for ANY first class tickets.

    Sir, are you going to publish on the USMS website the entire AUDITED (independent like KPMG, etc.) balance sheet of the FINA Worlds @ Stanford Championships…? I don’t mean “just” USMS’s portion, I mean ALL of it…?

    Thats a great idea, lets give KPMG $100,000 to audit a swim meet.

    isn't the president of ASUA a member of the FINA Bureau,

    Yes, he is. He was elected in Montreal at the last FINA Congress

    please…! Why do you need to cloud the real issue with politics if you are defending what's right and moral?

    I did not realize I was defending what is right and moral. I was just correcting your incorrect statements which leds to conclusions that do not follow if one has the facts.

    You have not read the FINA Masters main page,

    I stand corrected - you have more knowledge of what I have and have not read.

    If the FINA Handbook with its intension to enforce all its rules , I did not realize the FINA handbook had intentions, let alone the handbook having intentions to enforce the rules.

    why did FINA wait until the last minute to completely destroy the 8th consecutive bi-annual All Americas/LatyCar Championships in Sao Paulo Brazil after the participant registration had already been closed. Didnt the competition go on? Again it was not FINA it was ASUA.

    Mr.Moore, you jumped on my case when I mentioned what appeared to be a secretive FINA dictatorship saying that all federations have two votes, etc. I did not realize I jumped on your case, you stated that FINA was a dictatorship. I pointed out that the FINA Bureau is elected. The model that you ascribed to FINA is in reality not true.

    I was told you were present at the Congress at Stanford…???!?!

    I was there for part of the Congress as an observer.

    You call that ‘democracy’… motions put forth and approved ‘en block’ without any input… please sir, there were several happy attendees that were impressed with the quickness of such ‘democratic’ approvals,

    Actually it reminded me of a USMS House of Delegates meeting. Most of the work takes place before the actual vote.

    in fact most (if not ALL) of USMS’s motions were stomped on without even a chance for FINA to squeal in pain..!!

    Why would FINA squeal in pain? Many times you have to do your work ahead of time to get your rules passed. This is not unusual. There has to be the spade work done.

    When I said we need the USMS support to put FINA in its place, If this is not the perfect formula for getting things done. USMS which is a very small part of USAS going to put FINA in its place. You have the right form for working in a democracy. US has one member on the FINA bureau of 22 and we are going to tell them how to precede. I dont think that Dale Neuburger is going to go that route. To succeed at the Bureau level one has to have great diplomatic skills and to go there with the idea of putting people in their place is not going to work - you can trust me on that.

    Well… if USMS does come to the rescue –or arbitrate- with an example of their democratic approach and open congress and wanting to give an example of an excellent Masters “formula” including a balance of power… FABULOUS…
    What can I say to you, Mr. Moore, don’t you see this benefit to all masters?


    After reading this many times. I have no idea of where you are going with this.

    How can you actually write “Aint gonna happen…” or has FINA ‘planning’ already been set into motion with you…digging their bunkers deep for the long haul?

    You said that USMS should put FINA in its place, that is not going to happen.
    michael moore

  13. #13
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    FINA monopolizing Masters Swimming

    I was a swimmer in Uruguay since 1970 to 1977 ,and as a athlete I participated in some international championships (south America and pan American Championships in the seventh ) and I always respected the good work FINA has done too.

    In 1983 I move with my family to Brazil and in 1993 begun to participate in the masters swimmers championships as a swimmer, and later as volunteer work:

    - Coordinator of Club Paineiras do Morumby SP Masters Team (1994)

    - Masters Swimming Director for Clube Paineiras do Morumby SP (1995-1997) - Southamerican champions in 1997.

    - Coordinator of 4x1-Fiat Milano Team (since 1998) - Paulista and Brazilian champions in 1998, 1999, 2000 &2001

    - Vice-president of ABMN (1999-2000)

    - President of the APMN Council (1999-2000 and 2001-2004)

    - Coordinator of Water Polo clinics for women, category 83-85 (2000-2001)

    - Editor of the National Masters Swimming Newspaper 2000-2006

    -Director of the master department of the FAP 2004-2006

    -Vice president of the APMN -2005-2009

    _Director of the All Americas Latycar 2005 Sao Paulo Brasil



    I have been involve in the organization of championships in the state of Sao Paulo, the largest state of Brazil since 1997 we always work hard to offer the highest standards ,well run and planed events in respect to the swimmers , working with our federation and Fina rules .


    In our master World the most important is healthy , exercises , enjoy what we are doing , meet other masters friends competitors from around the world and have the freedom to participate and decided what championship we want to attend .



    The first international meeting in the region of Latin America, south America and Caribe was the LatyCar held in 1991 in Venezuela, with FINA's sanctioning, and then after the first , eight successful bi-annual championships all over Latin America and the Caribbean, so Latycar was very well known to FINA, and even linked to FINA from the LatyCar website.



    All the eight latycar championships was always sancionated by de federations of the countries who held the event



    Since 1991 Latycar promoted and developed the masters aquatics in our region * swimming, *water polo,* OW,* diving * synchronic *postal and it has been a reference in championships organization in south America , improve other countries and masters association to work hard trying to emulate Latycar , and with this we all win , because this is a fair competition , the swimmer will attend the best .

    For us international championships are very expensive to attend and require a great effort to participate, so we want the same effort for the championship organizers, promotion and dedication, and the only one who attends our expectative was always the LatyCar a non-profit organization, masters working for masters.

    The ALL Americas LatyCar 2005 was the first championships in South America, Latin America and caribe who attend the five aquatics master and ´postal event and had more than a thousand of participants.




    Mr. Moore said to Mr Eric that we have the South America championship organized by the Fina -consanat , but this championship is only for swimmers who lives in south America.
    Swimmers who lives in Centro America and Caribe couldn´t attend this championship.
    This south america championship CONSANAT –fina ,only have swimming and OW , no polo no diving, no syncro , no postal events and the pan American ASUA –Fina was only for swimmers .
    This championships are not very well planned , we only have information one or two months before it , and we always have a lot to improvise :NO changing rooms -lookers rooms , bathrooms or water because the swimming pool was t ready for the event , it was under construction (2004-Peru )or we did ´t have a warm up pool and water at the looker-rooms (colombia2003) .



    If FINA took away successful LatyCar and didn't replace it with any future international events what is gona happened with thousand of people from South America, Caribe, Latin America?




    Latycar has the highest standards and must continue for many reasons, if any because it is a respectful and well run and planned event and always respected FINA member federations ,and had their support and permission and officials, including latycar # 5 in Hall of Fame pools.

    Masters is all about friendship, fitness and fair competition, let's make sure that FINA and its family follow their own standard and that the most powerful Masters organization in the world -USMS- comes to the help of all the Americas Masters .
    We can´t accept memorandums from FINA that were not true, such as last years for the Sao Paulo latycar.
    USMS please stand hard and help us . We need it.

  14. #14
    Very Active Member michaelmoore's Avatar
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    Mr. Moore said to Mr Eric that we have the South America championship organized by the Fina -consanat , but this championship is only for swimmers who lives in south America.
    Swimmers who lives in Centro America and Caribe couldn´t attend this championship.


    I can only speak to one, the championships that were held in Santiago, Chile of November/December last year. I attended. I swam and won a silver medal (on the back it says VII Campeonato Sudamericano Natacion Master Santiago- Chile - 2005) . There was a warm up pool, there were also changing rooms. I had a great time down there - everyone was friendly and the competition was good.

    The team I swim for was recognized in the opening ceremony. It is my understanding that only South American teams would be eligible for team awards.

    I was told that the 2004 championships, norte americanos could swim, but their team could not score points.

    I do not think the championships were organized by FINA, I thought there were organized by Consanat. I did not see any FINA committee people there.
    michael moore

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    Very Active Member Matt S's Avatar
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    So To Sum Up...

    If I may apply a small period on the end of this exchange, it seems to me that Mr. Moore has thoroughly taken Mr. Robinson to the woodshed concerning his mistatements of fact and overly emotional language. I'm not knowledgable enough about all the specific facts to know if Mr. Robinson has a legitimate beef with how FINA handled the last Latycar meet. I think it is entirely possible he may. However, he completely lost me, and I suspect several others, with his over the top villification of FINA.

    Eric, Masters swimming is a volunteer effort. The only model out there is what you and your friends have correctly described as masters serving other masters. If there is money in masters swimming, it's because you and me put it there, and just enough to have our fun little meets without anyone getting rich (or getting paid much, if anything at all, for all the volunteer hours). We do not serve our common cause well by trying to stir up (TWICE!) needless controversy with excessive rhetoric that unfairly attacks the good faith efforts of our fellow masters and volunteers. Please try to stick the core of your concerns without the character assassination.

    Matt S

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    Brazillian Federation sanctions the LatyCar

    Originally posted by michaelmoore [/i]
    FINA/ASUA reneged on the sanctioning of Sao Paulo after LatyCar[/i]It is the BrazillianFederation that sanctions meets, not FINA or ASUA. The XI FINA World Masters Championships was sanctioned by Pacific Masters Swimming for United States Masters Swimming, which is United States Aquatic Sports National Governing Body for Masters swimming.

    Mr. Moore, you are confuse about what happened in Sao Paulo-All Americas LatyCar, 2005.

    The Brazilian federation sanction the event All Americas LatyCar 2005; you can see those letters in the web site www.latycar.org

    We have the sanction of the a) APMN –Assosiaçao Paulista master de nataçao from Sao Paulo, legally recognized by the ABMN , FAP and CBDA, the sanction of the b) ABMN –Assosiação Brasileira Masters de Nataçao –accredited national master ruling body who depends on the CBDA, body federation in Brazil, and we also have the sanction of the3) FAP body federation in Sao Paulo who depends on the CBDA

    On month before the event , september /05 Mr. Orban Mendoza ASUA –FINA send an e-mail to all the federation in all our American continent saying that we don’t have the sanctions of our swimming federation and also said that the latycar is a company ..

    Why he did this?... I don´t know .. do you?...

    There are still people supporting this UN trust..

    Saudações

  17. #17
    Moderator Rob Copeland's Avatar
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    Re: FINA monopolizing Masters Swimming

    Eric, Aroma, David, et.al.

    I don’t think anyone will disagree that there were some very unfortunate circumstances surrounding the ALL Americas LatyCar 2005. However, instead of fixating on past events, I would encourage all of us to look to the future to determine what we can do moving forward to enhance Masters Swimming.


    Originally posted by Aroma Martorell
    If FINA took away successful LatyCar and didn't replace it with any future international events what is gona happened with thousand of people from South America, Caribe, Latin America?
    So how can USMS help?

  18. #18
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    LatyCar/ASUA

    A lot of passion in this discussion, perhaps a passion we all share for swimming.

    I have been aware of LatyCar since the early nineties, even though I now live in Canada, my roots are in the Caribbean and Atlantic Islands, primarily Bermuda and Barbados. Perhaps I have a different perspective on this situation, I hope it is useful to the discussion.

    In the islands we have very small aquatic organizations, even smaller Masters. The national aquatic organizations have great difficulty servicing their age group clubs and national team, they have little time or resources to assist Masters. We were aware that the situation in most Latin American countries was similar through the eighties.

    We learnt of the work that David Morrell was doing in Venezuela and subsequently throughout Latin America to promote Masters. David, I believe, has dual US and Venezuelan citizenship and had learnt about USMS and their programs while in the US. He was promoting these programs in Latin America. It is fair to say that no one else really was, the national aquatic organizations did not have the interest or capacity to develop Masters.

    David's initiave led to the formation of LatyCar, an informal association of national Masters organizations in Latin America and the Caribbean to promote Masters aquatics. Since no one seemed interested in hosting a major Masters Aquatic competition, David agreed to do this. LatyCar has sponsored eight Championships since 1991, which David organized in Caracas. These have been the most "Masters friendly" competitions I have ever attended, fun and friendship are the most important factor. There were several inovations introduced.

    From the islands point of view these LatyCar Championships were a catalyst for developing their Masters programs. This was the important competition that they worked towards, built their organizations on. There were people who pushed this, Duncan Newby in Bermuda, Angus Edgehill in Barbados and Joey Koffman in Trinidad and Tobago, to name a few, however, without LatyCar this would have been a most difficult task. I am told that the situation in many Latin American countries was similar.

    LatyCar, mostly David, promoted the Championships and assisted the hosts in running them. The profits from the meet went to enhance all swimming programs in the host country. For example in Costa Rica in 2001 the profits all went to purchase that countries first electronic timing system, for use by all swimmers.

    All LatyCar Championships were run under all FINA rules and with all appropriate sanctions as dictated by their national aquatic federation. They included other aquatic sports.

    In 2001 David Morrell contacted Jerry Olson, then President of ASUA about the possibility of combining LatyCar with ASUA and holding an All Americas or Pan American Masters Championships. Certain terms were agreed to, unfortunately discussions terminated with Mr. Olson's sudden death. All attempts to comunicate with ASUA since then have failed.

    LatyCar had considerable expertise in running major Championships and many contacts, all of which they were willing to share with ASUA. There were concerns expressed by a number of the LatyCar members, because of their prior experiences about several issues. They felt there should be an open and fair bidding system for the Championship. They felt that there should be an approprite selection process for the members of the ASUA Masters Committee, which would deal with Masters issues in the Americas and award the Championship. They felt that the members of the Committee should be selected by the national Masters organizations, with reasonable balance from the various regions of the Americas. They felt all members of the Committee should be Americas Masters. Jerry had no difficulties with these as far as we know.

    In the last couple of years ASUA through its President have made several statements about LatyCar which were not factual. Two days after entries closed for the 2005 LatyCar Championships in Sao Paulo, ASUA issued a statement that was totally misleading and threatening. Although not fatal, it was certainly detrimental to those hosting and attending the Championships.

    Unfortunately, FINA and a number of national aquatic organizations, even though they seemed to know the information was false, warned their masters not to attend.

    This obviously generated a significant amount of discusion in Sao Paulo, which was still a most successful Championship. Two additional issues to the ones mentioned above were that Masters national bodies should be free to associate and communicate with each other for the promotion of our sport, and that international and national aquatic bodies should comply with the ethics that they required of their atheletes, clubs, etc. There was a general disatisfaction of the top down decision making process exemplified by ASUA. We are adults, we can think and we like to be involved in the decision making process in our sport. WAMO and the Sao Paulo Declaration evolved out of this, and that is what they say. Is FINA and ASUA saying that these are inappropriate statements?

    A number of people have asked FINA and ASUA what it is that LatyCar did to initiate this action by ASUA's President. I am not aware of any response or any valid reasons given.

    Rob has raised the fact that in the US you have the YMCA, State Games, Senior Games, etc operating outside of the FINA umbrella, this is not a problem, ASUA does not ban participants from competition for two years. In Canada last year we had the World Masters Games, over 10% of the swimmers were not registered Masters, other FINA Rules were ignored, ASUA said nothing. Organizations like IGLA, the Military games, the Police and Firemen Games, they are all outside the FINA umbrella, FINA and ASUA say nothing.

    Why does LatyCar get this special treatment when their Championships are totally within the FINA umbrella?

    In discussions at Stanford with members of the FINA Bureau, the FINA and ASUA Masters Technical Committees I think we all recognize we have a mess. How do we move forward? I know that several people are working behind the scenes to attempt to resolve it. I believe it will have to be a solution satisfactory to Americas Masters.

    USMS is the largest and most independant Masters organization in the Americas. Is it possible that a solution can be developed at Convention that will lead to the eventual solution to this issue? I know that many hope so, some have suggestions. We are all committed to Masters aquatics, most of us are committed to all aspects of aquatics and have spent much of our life working for this cause. This is a most unfortunate situation, we need to correct it and move forward, all working together for the benifit of all aspects of our sport.

    Understandably, USMS members accept USMS' status within US Aquatic Sports and the democratic control that they have over their organization as natural and normal. It isn't normal! Dale Neuburger stated several times at the FINA Masters Congress and on other occaisions at Stanford that US Aquatic Sports has five components. Masters is one of those components. Those of us from other countries hoped that our national aquatic federations were listening. This makes so much sence to those of us in other jurisdictions, but we dont have it. Masters in most cases are out of the loop as far as their national aquatic federations are concerned. We believe that the USMS/USAS model is one that would enhance Masters and most importantly enhance aquatics if it were adopted by other countries around the World.

    Once we get LatyCar/ASUA sorted out, the International Committee should look at this!

    Chris Smith

  19. #19
    Very Active Member Sandi Rousseau's Avatar
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    It seems to me that our discussion needs to get back to the underlying problem that Eric points out. The actions FINA/ASUA is using are, in my opinion, discriminatory against LatyCar. I don’t see that the LatyCar organization is any different than World Masters Games, Fireman’s Games, IGLA champs, Senior Games, etc. All of these organizations provide opportunities for Masters athletes to compete and promote the same ‘swimming for life’ concept that I believe we all support.

    It is factual that the threat of sanctions against participants in the 2006 LatyCar Championships in Sao Paulo, Brazil was made, was based on erroneous information about the championships not having the appropriate sanctions, and the threat did have some impact on participation (even though the monies had been collected). The threat was based on a FINA rule which does give FINA the authority to sanction a swimmer; however, I do not think that this rule was ever made with Masters athletes in mind. It seemed to be only a convenience to use it as ASUA wanted a tool to put some bite into the threat for sanctioning.

    I have been told that the bureaucracy will be slow to change within FINA and ASUA, and I do not doubt this. An organization is only as effective as the individuals within that organization. An organization can also be only as destructive as the individuals within the organization. If an organization does not evaluate its own personnel and their actions, then shame on it for not being responsible.

    During the time of Jerry Olson’s presidency of ASUA, a liaison was underway to draw the best from FINA/ASUA and LatyCar and merge these attributes together. With his untimely death, discussions stopped and have not resumed under the current leadership of ASUA despite attempts by LatyCar personnel.

    I know that LatyCar has the best interests of Masters swimmers (as well as other aquatic Masters sports) at heart. While I was chair of the USMS Championship Committee for eight years, USMS shared with LatyCar and LatyCar borrowed/adopted many formats currently used within USMS championships. There was no reason to ‘reinvent the wheel’ and we are all in this sport to promote a healthy lifestyle and give Masters athletes opportunities to compete.

    The USMS International Committee will indeed be discussing this topic at the upcoming convention, and I can’t believe that the USMS House of Delegates will not give a clear message to our leaders within USMS to assist LatyCar in some way. USMS is a leader in the Masters Swimming world, we can make a difference, and we should not tolerate threats to swimming organizations that promote the Masters swimming principles we all hold.

    LatyCar can coexist with FINA/ASUA. LatyCar has offered to share its expertise in running Masters aquatic championship events in the Latin American/Caribbean/South America countries. Why would we not endorse that concept?

    Sandi Rousseau
    Past Chair USMS Championship Committee
    Past Chair USMS International Committee

  20. #20
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    SUPPORT LATYCAR

    Hello All Masters
    Reading through all the postings, I can confirm that the position assumed by Orban Mendoza (President of ASUA/UANA) last year has really started a division among masters swimmers. I think he has caused a lot of harm, because masters swimmers should be only one family and there should always exist friendship, sharing and togetherness; and this is not what we have now. This official does not show any understanding love or respect to the masters swimmers.

    I would like to share a little bit about the history of the masters swimmers in Colombia. Masters Swimming exists in Colombia only because of LATYCAR, so what we are now we owe it to LATYCAR. And I think many other countries their masters swimming started or grew only because of LATYCAR. My question is why they are trying to kill LATYCAR, what wrong has LATYCAR done, that they have set a campaign to terminate this great tradition in masters swimming.

    I think that all the officials who under the FINA or ASUA/UANA umbrella should assume a position in helping masters swimming, and one of the things they should do is help and promote for masters is to continue having LatyCar. That is one way in helping Master Swimming. But if they choose NOT to help Master Swimming then they keep fighting to terminate LatyCar.

    LatyCar has very high standards when organizing the championships, and masters swimmers from Colombia has attended every single one since the first meet we went to, and that was in 1999 in Ft. Lauderdale. When LatyCar organizes the meets, they make sure registrations and announcement are sent with enough time, and the promotion of the event is a key part of the success of all the LatyCar and the All Americas championships.

    I know that ASUA/UANA is trying to offer masters swimmers the chance to participate in international championships, but fine, so let ASUA/UANA do their meets, but also let LatyCar do their meets, and PLEASE USMS, you as an authority in masters swimming make sure FINA do not have the swimmers subject to threats of being sanctioned when participating in events organized by LatyCar. Because I understand in the USA you all have many other events that are not necessary organized by any of the FINA groups, like YMCA, State Games, Senior Games and many other local events. And the same thing happens internationally, where they have the IGLA, World Games and many others.

    I also noticed you mentioned CONSANAT (Confederation of the South American Swimming), and just for your information, just a few facts to think about. What would you think of attending a meet where once the competitions started you did not have a pool for warming or cooling down? Where they would not have any locker rooms, no showers and the bathrooms were those “temporary type” of facilities? Or how about if the pool was filled out the day before, and the day of the first competition the water was so blurry it was difficult to see the walls? Also something else to think about, if you look into the date the announcement went out for the most of all the South American Championship, you all Masters swimmers would be surprised. And the same thing is happening with the next South American Championship, which will be in Colombia. Do you all know when the Meet Announcement “Convocatoria” was posted? And this championship is set for October 9, well it was only posted on the 20th of August, and so far, there is no information available about accommodations and all the other basic information. And the last meet ASUA organized was very similar to what the CONSANAT does. So, if they ask me, which are better organized the LatyCar meets or the ones run by CONSANAT, I will have to say that with no doubt LATYCAR. The same answer is obtain if we speak of its technical level.

    Going against LATYCAR, is going against the progress and encouragement of masters swimming. LatyCar only has done great for Masters Swimming in the Americas. And if ASUA/UANA wants to help masters swimmers, the best solution would be to see LatyCar provide their experience and masters to masters way of working. And in that way we all masters swimmers will benefit and we all win.

    It is also very strange to have FINA now not supporting LatyCar, when in previous years; they even had posted information about the success of the LatyCar events. So I ask myself, what is behind all this? It is clear that there is someone who has started to prevent LatyCar to continue offering the chance to swimmers to enjoy this great event. They should not stop an event that is successful, fun, one of the best-organized events in Latin America and the Caribbean.

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