2014 Update #2

 2014 Officials Update #2

In this Issue:

As stressed in training this season, we must be consistent across all clubs in the way we officiate from S&T to Referee and process DQ slips.  I have received many emails stating that certain clubs are not following procedures laid out during training.  Please refer to Whistle Procedure and S&T briefing on the Midlakes website for details.  Not being consistent only hurts the swimmers as the season progresses and they get to Champs week and are unfamiliar with the procedures we follow.

Processing DQs
As mentioned at training, the process your club uses for processing DQs is important to the education effort needed by coaches and swimmers.  So a couple of tips:

  1. Make sure you have a procedure to process DQs, know it and use it.  The Starter/Referee should be reviewing the DQs as they come in for accuracy (between starts and taking order of finish), turning the white slip over to the computer folks, and getting the yellow copy to the coaches in a timely manner.  Don't wait for the end of the meet to do this!
  2. Stroke & Turn officials should also be documenting the DQ on their heat sheet in case there are follow-up questions, use shorthand if necessary.
  3. Feel free to have an experienced official act as a sounding board if there are questions about a DQ.
  4. Use the words of the rules, not the DQ code, to document the infraction.  The code is only used in the computer and for reports - coaches need to know what the swimmer did in order to educate/correct them.
  5. If your club has the officials, having a Chief Judge (CJ) is a good idea and can help with the process

Champs Officiating
All Midlakes officials are allowed and encouraged to help at their Division Champs meet (B-Champs).  Most teams arrange to have a "lead" official from USA Swimming, but that is not required.  For League Champs (A-Champs), Midlakes requires USA Swimming Certified Officials to work the Prelims and Finals meet.  An email will go out to all of those officials - if you are a USA Swimming Official and did not receive an email this week, please let me know so I can update my list. 


Q1: How should relay DQs be written?

A1: It is important to not only write the DQ infraction for relays, it is also important to write which # swimmer that infraction belongs to.  This will help the referee in his/her double check and the computer operator to assign DQ to correct swimmer

Q2: How do I handle a briefing for timers for 2nd shifts?

A2: I would suggest that you have all timers attend briefing before the meets starts but I know this is sometimes unreasonable due to work schedules.  If that is the cause, maybe the 2nd Starter could do the briefing prior to taking his/her duties as the starter or a head timer.  Being consistent is the main key, see above.  Please remember to ask timers to lean over to see the touch rather than stop the watch when they think the touch occurred.

As always, thanks for all you do.  If you have any questions, feel free to send them them on!  I would not like to blast my cell number but I will give it out to each team if needed.


Frank Castro
Officials Chair
Midlakes Swim League