the Championship Season
March means championships — and lots of them! PVS athletes
of all ages have been working hard and gearing-up for these meets all
season. There will definitely be some fast times and memorable races
this month! We need you to make the meets a success for our swimmers.
Championship meets require championship officiating — can we count
on your help?
Spring Championship Meets
Short course season culminates with several championship meets
this month. Many of these meets are “Officials Qualifying Meets”
(OQM) offering the opportunity for formal evaluation at the N2 level
(Seniors, Junior Olympics) and the N2 and N3 levels (Sectionals). Any
official interested in being evaluated at these championship meets should
apply in advance. While walk-ons are always welcome it is especially
helpful to have the roster completed before the meet. If you know if
and when you can help, please get in touch with the Officials Contact
The month begins with PVS
Junior Championships, held March 5-8 at the Martin Luther King,
Jr. Swim Center in Silver Spring. For many of our younger swimmers,
this meet will be their first “Prelims and Finals” championship
meet, and officials are still needed. Contact Donna
Considine to volunteer your services.
Senior Championships will be held March 12-15 at George Mason
University in Fairfax. Officials wishing to work at this meet should
submit the application found on the PVS
website. You must apply no later than March 5 for specific
deck positions. However, late applications and walk-ins are also welcome
and will be assigned to available positions.
On the following weekend, March 19-22, PVS
14 & Under Junior Olympic Championships will be held at Prince
George’s Sports and Learning Complex, adjacent to FedEx Field.
The application to work at this meet can likewise be found on the PVS
website. You must apply no later than March 12 for specific
deck positions. Once again, late applications and walk-ins are welcome
and will be assigned to available positions.
The Germantown Indoor Swim Center in Montgomery County will
be the site of the Eastern
Zone Southern Sectional meet, March 26-29. This meet is part
of USA Swimming’s Speedo Championship Series, and will feature
elite swimmers from several states. This is a terrific opportunity to
officiate at a National-level meet that’s close to home. You can
apply to work and/or be evaluated at the Eastern Zone Southern Sectional
meet by completing the application on the Eastern
Zone website. This application must be received by the Eastern Zone
Officials Chair no later than February 25 in order for the applicant
to be considered for specific assigned positions (Deck Referee, Starter,
Chief Judge, Admin Ref). Assigned positions will be notified no later
than March 5. Applications for other deck positions will be accepted
But Wait . . . There’s
Are your children swimming at the RMSC Mini Championships, MSSC
Championships, March Madness, or the MAKO Spring Invitational? We need
your help at these meets also. See the schedule above to contact the
You Make the Call
In a 200-yard medley relay, the third swimmer (butterfly) misjudges
the distance to the wall at the finish of his leg and hits the wall
with his head. After the swimmer first hits the wall, the fourth swimmer
leaves the block to swim the freestyle leg. The third swimmer then touches
with both hands simultaneously. What is the call?
See the answer at the bottom of this newsletter.
Did You Know . . .
At the 1983 Pan American Games in Caracas, Venezuela,
the U.S. men’s 400 meter medley relay consisted of all four 100-meter
stroke world record holders at the time, the only instance this has
happened in swimming history. (Rick Carey, Steve Lundquist, Matt Gribble,
Why N2 or N3?
Why would you want to attain National certification as an N2 or N3 official?
- To have the satisfaction that you’re recognized as
a highly motivated official who demonstrates superior performance
standards on deck.
- To receive practical constructive feedback regarding your
performance from very experienced nationally-recognized officials.
- To qualify to work at higher level meets. N2 certification
recognizes that an official is experienced and has been evaluated
as capable of working the position at Sectional, Zone, Grand Prix
and similar higher profile meets. N3 certification recognizes that
an official has the experience, skills and knowledge to be considered
for selection to work at National Championship level meets in the
- To be viewed as a mentor by your fellow officials.
- To help insure that all swimmers, from novice to Olympian,
will have the most professional, most consistent, and fairest officiating
Requirements for progression to N2 and N3 levels in the positions
of Stroke and Turn Judge, Chief Judge, Starter, Deck Referee, and Administrative
Referee can be found on the USA
Do you have a question about officiating or a tip you’d like to
share? Is there a rule that you’d like to have clarified? Do you
have a suggestion for a future item in this newsletter? If so, please
send your questions/comments to the newsletter editor, Jack
What is an Officials Qualifying
Officials Qualifying Meets are approved by USA Swimming for the evaluation
of officials seeking advancement and re-certification at the N2 and
N3 levels. They may include Regional, Zone, Sectional, Grand Prix, and
other meets which satisfy the criteria set by USA Swimming. Among the
criteria: The meet format must include at least 4 sessions with prelims
and finals. It must include a broad range of senior events, and it must
be expected to attract and include national caliber swimmers (capable
of achieving National Championship and Junior Championship qualifying
times). National Evaluators must be present during all evaluation sessions.
There are requirements for minimum numbers of officials, as well as
for the Meet Referee’s qualifications. The meet announcement must
contain a notice that the meet has been approved, or application has
been made for approval, as an Officials Qualifying Meet as well as information
outlining how officials will be considered for evaluation.
Resolution to ‘You Make
The relay team should be disqualified for a finish violation by the
third swimmer. At the finish of the butterfly, the swimmer must touch
with two hands simultaneously. There would be no relay take-off violation
because the third swimmer did conclude his leg by touching the wall
with his head. The finish just wasn’t legal.