Officials Clinics

Officiating is a volunteering requirement by parents or family members and all officials positions need to be filled in order to run a swim meet. However it is important that all officials fully understand their roles and perform their duties professionally to make the meet a success. It is a good idea to review the duties of your position prior to the start of the meet so please review the summarized clinics below.

The success of a swim meet has a reflection on the reputation of our club and above all the swimmers deserve a fair and well run meet.

Please note the links below are summarized versions of the clinics for review purposes only.


A Head Lane Timer is a timer who is also Strokes & Turns certified

Primary Responsibilities

The Head Lane Timer may assign duties 1 through 4 to other timers prior to the start of the meet, however the HLT is responsible for ensuring these duties be fulfilled correctly.
1. Checking the swimmer’s name for each heat
2. Checking that swimmers are competing in relays in the order stated on the card or lane sheet
3. Taking splits – ensuring that 3 times (splits) are taken on the first leg of a relay
4. Ringing the bell on distance events
5. Judge relay take-over

Additional Responsibilities

1. Ensuring no one touches the timing pads
2. Ensure 3 manual times are collected for swimmers in senior events and for swimmers with disabilities
3. Long Distance Events (800m and 1500m events)
- Verify completed lengths with Chief Timer
- Ensure split time for each lap is recorded
- Bell is rung
- With 2 lengths + 5 meters remaining
- Over the right hand lane marker
- Continuously from wall approach to the backstroke flags


Chief Timekeeper Role

• Of all the intermediate positions, Chief Timekeeper is probably the most straightforward.
• Accurate timing by this team is ESSENTIAL.
• The Chief Timekeeper and their assistant must maintain a constant check on the accuracy and the efficiency of all the Timekeepers.

Before the Meet

Arrive early – at least one hour before the start.
• Check with the Meet Manager about the conditions of the watches and check watches, if required.
• Arrange a sign-out system for the watches, if requested by the Meet Manager.
• Arrange a time with the Referee and Starter for a “Watch Check”
• Have extra batteries (if appropriate), watches, and pencils for Timekeepers on the deck, during the meet.

Before the Meet – Discuss with the Referee

• Are official times to be recorded on the cards by the Timekeepers? (almost never)
• What are the signals for advising the Referee if any Timekeepers have a problem? (ie: card mix-up)
• Will there be two (2) swimmers per lane in distance events?
• Is there a need to appoint relay take-over judges?

Special Procedures
• Distance Events – two swimmers per lane?
• Need extra Timekeepers?
• 25 metre Swim in a 25 metre pool – Will swimmers be moved to start at the turns end, or will the Timekeepers be moved to take the finish at the turns end?

Before the Meet – Briefing

Conduct a briefing session and watch check with all Timekeepers, 25 to 30 minutes before the start of the session.
• Introduce yourself and your assistant and explain your duties.
• Ensure you have enough Timekeepers and arrange for more if required.
• Identify any new Timekeepers and ensure they work with experienced Timekeepers.
• Appoint relay take-over judges, if required, and discuss correct position for observing relay takeover and procedure for reporting of a disqualification.
• Select a Head Timekeeper for each lane. If you do not have a certified Inspector of Turns in each lane, notify the Referee.
• Discuss how to operate the different kinds of watches or plungers, that will be used. Stress that the person that starts the watch MUST stop the watch. DO NOT EXCHANGE A WATCH ONCE IT HAS BEEN STARTED.

Identification of swimmers (have a sample card).
• Correct name on card – matches the swimmer in the water.
• Correct heat – for heats, it is located under “Heat”, for timed finals or finals, it is located under “Final”.
• Correct Lane – for heats, it is located under “Heat”, for timed finals or finals, it is located under “Final”.
• Relays – Swimmers swim in correct order.

Discuss the recording of times on the time cards.
• Recorded to the hundredths
• Correct location on the card for:
– Timed Finals – Bottom middle under “Final”
– Preliminary Heats – Bottom left under “Heats”
– Finals – Bottom middle under “Final”

• When – Every time the swimmer touches the wall.
• How – Lean over the end of the pool and observe the touch.
• Where to record them on the card – Far right side of the card and on the back if not enough room. (Note: The Chief Finish Judge may request splits to go on the back of the card). On distance events (800 and 1500), if you miss a split, put a line through the space where the split would have been recorded. This will assist you in keeping track of where the swimmer is in the race for the Bell Lap.

Official Times
• Are the Timekeepers putting them on the cards? Almost never.
• If so, how to calculate them using 2 or 3 watches.

Light touches when using electronics.
• Swimmer does not touch the pad firmly enough to activate the electronics.
• Report it to the Chief Timekeeper or Assistant
• Write “Light Touch” on the time card.

When and how to ring bells if you have 800 or 1500 metre events during the session.
• In 25 metre pool
– For 800 metre race – Ring bell at the 750m lap
– For 1500 metre race – Ring bell at the 1450m lap
• In 50 metre pool
– For 800 metre race – Ring bell at the 700m lap
– For 1500 metre race – Ring bell at the 1400m lap
– A hand bell shall be rung for each swimmer over the right lane rope of his/her lane as he/she approaches the backstroke flags and continue until the turn is completed and the swimmer has passed the backstroke flags.

Other Items
• How does the Timekeeper signal for help when they have a problem?
• Resetting of watches – on the Referee’s first whistle to start the next heat or as instructed by the Chief Timekeeper.
• Advise Timekeepers to record times as fast as possible and to be prepared for the next race.
• Relays
• The first leg of relays (50 or 100 splits) shall be timed by all Timekeepers and recorded and published as official times.
• Ensure the Timekeepers know the relay take off rules, the Head Timekeeper is charged with this duty.

During the Meet

SW 2.8.1 – The Chief Timekeeper shall assign the seating positions for all Timekeepers and the lanes for which they are responsible. There shall be three (3) Timekeepers for each lane. If Automatic Officiating Equipment is not used, there shall be two (2) additional Timekeepers designated, either of whom shall be directed to replace a Timekeeper whose watch did not start or stopped during an event, or who for any other reason is not able to record the time. When using three (3) digital watches per lane, final time and place is determined by time.

CSW – When using less than three digital watches per lane, the final time and placing shall be determined by time.

SW 1.2.3 – Where Automatic Officiating Equipment is not available, such equipment must be replaced by a Chief Timekeeper, three (3) Timekeepers per lane, and two (2) additional Timekeepers.

• If there are only two (2) Timekeepers, then the Chief Timekeeper or their assistant shall have their times recorded on the card of the first and second place swimmers in the event of an Age Group swimmer breaking a record in a Senior Meet.
• The extra Timekeeper is essential for large meets and helpful at all meets.
• In the event you don’t have extra Timekeepers, you or your assistant will provide the time.

SW 2.8.2 – The Chief Timekeeper shall collect from the timekeepers in each lane a card showing the time recorded and, if necessary, inspect their watches.

• A runner will be assigned to collect the cards.
• You should look at the first one or two heats to ensure the times are being recorded properly, and in the proper places. (splits, timed finals, heats, etc.)

SW 2.8.3 – The Chief Timekeeper shall record or examine the official time on the card for each lane.

• Official times are normally put on the cards by the Chief Finish Judge.
• If electronics are being used, the times are taken from the official electronics printout by the Chief Finish Judge,

SW 11.3 – Any timing device that is terminated by an official shall be considered a watch. Such manual times must be taken by three timekeepers appointed or approved by the Member in the country concerned. All watches shall be certified as accurate to the satisfaction of the governing body concerned. Manual timing shall be registered to 1/100 of a second. Where no Automatic Equipment is used, official manual times shall be determined as follows:

• “Certified as accurate”….is done at the watch check.
• Times obtained from watches/ semiautomatic timing (plungers) stopped by an official will be considered a Manual Time.

Determining Manual Times
SW 11.3.1 – If two of the three watches record the same time and the third disagrees, the two identical times shall be the official time.

SW 11.3.2 – If all three watches disagree, the watch recording the intermediate time shall be the official time.

SW 11.3.3 – With only two (2) out of three (3) watches working the average time shall be the official time.

CSW – If only two watches are being used, the arithmetic average to the slowest hundredth shall be the official time.


CSW 12.18.3 – Record swims shall be timed and recorded by an Automatic Officiating Equipment system or by three (3) timekeepers.

For a RECORD there must be THREE (3) watches. The Chief Timekeeper or their assistant should always have their times recorded on the card if there are only two (2) Timekeepers.

CSW 12.18.4 – A time achieved while swimming the first “leg” of a relay or while swimming any part of an individual event with an electronic timing system start, may count as a record. For a split time to count as a record, the swimmer must legally complete the full distance of the event or “leg” of the relay, and the official time, for the individual event, shall be equal to or better than the qualifying time for the event. (See also SW 12.10 & SW 12.11)

There will be an extra card attached to the normal card requesting an “Official Split” The Referee should advise you as soon as he is advised, and arrangements made to time the 50 metre end.


• Signal the Referee if something goes wrong in your area that needs to be fixed and requires the meet to stop.
• Take the time of the winner of each heat or other lanes as required.
• Supervise all Timekeepers.
– Check their times are accurate by observing the time being recorded.
– Check that the Head Lane Timekeeper is recording the information in the right place on the cards.
– Have your time recorded if required for a third time, or if a Timekeepers time is not right.
– Chief Timekeeper’s time is a diplomatic way for the Chief Timekeeper to supervise every lane and observe that time are accurate. The Chief Timekeeper’s time is not used when three (3) good times are recorded.
• Evaluate Timekeepers.
• Move Timekeepers from a lane with no swimmer to a lane where a Timekeeper did not get a start on their watch.
• Solve ongoing problems in your area of responsibility.

After the Meet

• Sign record applications.
• Ensure all watches are returned, shut off, and stored properly. Those that are not working are marked and brought to the attention of the Meet Manager.
• Return the watches to the office, or the Meet Manager.

Chief Timekeeper Briefing Sheet

Meeting with Referee
• Watches all work, or is the meet using Electronics?
• Checklist of events. Any Relays, 25m, 50m, 800m, 1500m?
• Do Timekeepers record official times on cards?
• Arrange signals for 25m/50m events.
• Will there be two swimmers per lane for distance events?
• Where do you want the official time for the first leg of the relays written?
• Need to appoint Head Lane Timers?
• Need to appoint Relay Takeover Judges?

Briefing of Timekeepers
• Introduce yourself, assistant, Start.
• Do you have enough Timekeepers?
• Put Novice Timekeepers with experienced ones.
• Do you have enough Head Lane Timekeepers? If not, inform the Referee.
• Discuss the operations of the watches.
• If electronics or plungers are used, review the procedure for their use. Reminder: The start is connected electronically with the starter’s device; only the depression of the plunger button with index finger is required when the swimmer completes the race.
• Arrange with Referee and Starter to do a “Watch Check”. Let the watches run a full minute before stopping. You want to ensure that all their times are consistent.
• Cards – Ensure correct name, heat, lane.
• Times – Yes or No for official times on cards. Record times to the 1/100th. Correct location on card for heats, finals, or timed finals.
• Splits – Where, bells for 800m and 1500m events.
• Light Touches – Where to record and who to notify.
• Relays – Swum in correct order, first leg will require all Timekeepers to take a time. It is an Official Time. Where to record.
– Problems – Procedures if you have a problem in your lane.
– Procedure and time to report on deck

Take extra watches and pencils on deck with you.

Have Fun!!!



• Assign swimmers to lane positions
• Appoint assistants
• If pre-seeded ensure correct positions
• Inform swimmers of heat and lane
• Scratch swimmers who fail to marshal when called
• Combine heats (if instructed by the Referee)
• Police the working deck
• Report swimmers to the referee for undisciplined acts
• Receive the official relay teams from team officials
• Advise Referee when swimmers assembled
- Check swimmers into marshalling area
- Control swimmers from check-in until turned over to the Referee
- Inform the Referee of the number of heats and swimmers in each heat
- Inform the Referee of any Para-swimmers who may need extra time
• Ensure Finalists (A) are present before turning over Consolation (B) finalists to the Referee
• Reseed (if necessary) from Consolation (B) when Finalist does not appear

CSW 3.6.1 – Once entered in an event a swimmer who is not an alternate may only withdraw or “scratch” from that event without penalty according to rules set down by the PS or written in the Meet Information package.

CSW 3.6.2
- HEATS / FINALS: The scratch deadline shall be clearly stated in the Meet Information.
- TIME-FINAL EVENTS: For individual events or relays that are Timed Finals, the Scratch Deadlines shall be clearly stated in the Meet Information.

CSW 3.6.3 – Penalties for failure by a swimmer to scratch from Preliminaries, Finals, or Timed Final events shall be clearly stated in the Meet Information.

CSW 3.6.4 – Name change deadlines for relays should be stated in the Meet Information and announced at the Coaches TECHNICAL meeting

CSW 3.6.5 – Late or deck entries may be allowed at the discretion of the Meet Manager and shall be classified as exhibition swims.

Scratches, Substitutions & Penalties

• In all cases refer to the Meet Information package
• At SNC designated meets, refer to the most recent SNC rule book
- SNC 3.1 – Scratch deadline
- SNC 3.2 – Preliminaries
- SNC 3.3 – Finals
- SNC 3.4 – Penalties


• Finalized relay cards must be received at the time of ‘checking in’ with the Clerk of Course
• Once ‘checked in’ no changes may be made
• When more than one relay team advances to either Final (A) or Consolation (B) swimmers may be replaced by other eligible swimmers (provided the replacement was not the cause of a DQ in the same event)


Be available 1 hour prior to start

Spent time to
- Become familiar with pool deck
- Check on scratch rules in the Meet Information package
- Establish rigidity of marshalling
- Brief Marshals
- Receive scratch list from coaches
- Remove scratched swimmers entry cards
- Indicate on Clerk’s master heat sheet scratched swimmers

You will need
- The meet invitation which provides the rules for the meet
- Copy of the heat sheet (may or may not be pre-seeded)
- Extra blank scratch sheets
- Extra blank entry cards
- Pencils, coloured pens / pencils and erasers
- Relay seeding slips if in use

Deck seeded meets start seeding each event
- Check the number of cards against the entries on the master heat sheet
- Seed the event according to whether it is a,
– Final or timed final
– Preliminary / semi-final
– Dual / tri-meet

Cardless meets
- Any change from program involves correction of name on lane sheet
- Notify office and referee

Sprint events (25m Short Course or 50m in Long Course)
• Events that do not start at the ‘finish-end’, after seeding arrange the event by lane and hold cards for distribution to timekeepers (as opposed to swimmers).

Here’s an Idea ..
Create a duplicate (2nd) card for these ‘no turns’ events.
• Give one card to the swimmers
- Ensures lane assignment
- Just leave next to blocks (or have Marshal collect)
- Give one card to the Timers

During the Meet

Technically the Clerk of Course is NOT required to post events being seeded. However, the posting of event numbers does facilitate marshalling.
• Announce and / or post the events being marshalled
• Lay an event out (seed)
- Mark the heat and lane numbers on cards
- Check that it is correct
- Hand out to swimmers
• Inform Referee and Starter of the number of heats and swimmers. Consult the Referee regarding combining heats.
• Cards of ‘no-shows’ are kept in a separate pile
• Relay cards returned (previously sent out by Meet Management)

Conclusion of the Meet

• Turn balance of materials over to Meet Manager / Assistant Meet Manager
• If the session has involved preliminaries for finals,
- Remain for 30 minutes
- Receive all scratches for finals
- Bring to attention of Meet Manager


Assistant to the Clerk of Course
• Report at least 1 hour before start to handle scratches, deck entries and coaches scratch meeting
• Assist in ‘pulling scratches’ from events in deck seeded meets
• Ensure scratches get to the office to be taken out of the computer
• Update your heat sheet
• Post numbers of events being marshaled
• In pre-seeded meet explain process
• In deck-seeded meet call out names of swimmers
• Determine if missing swimmers are scratches
• Distribute lane cards to Timekeepers when starts are at turning end of pool
• Assist in seeding if required
• Full control of the pool deck
- Directing swimmers to blocks
- Keeping coaches out of the marshalling area (use discretion)
- When authorized by the Clerk of Course shall,
– Scratch non-reporting swimmers
– Report undisciplinary swimmers (foul language, loud abrasive attitude, willful damage to pool)
• Assist in maintaining quiet and stillness on deck prior to starts
• When authorized shall report to referee
• Clean up the area you are working in
• Hand in all scratch cards, alternate cards and extra cards to Meet Manager


Role of Chief Finish Judge

SW 2.10.1 – The chief finish judge shall assign each finish judge his position and the placing to be determined.
• This FINA rule applies to those federations where Finish Judges are still used. In Canada, this position has been eliminated for all sanctioned meets (CSW

SW 2.10.2 – After the race, the chief finish judge shall collect signed result sheets from each finish judge and establish the result and placing which will be sent directly to the referee.

• The Chief Finish Judge’s primary role responsibility is the determination of the official placing and results of a race.

SW 2.10.3 – Where Automatic Officiating Equipment is used to judge the finish of a race, the chief finish judge must report the order of finish recorded by the Equipment after each race.


• Usually done in a room to the side of the deck or an area free of excess traffic, noise or air turbulence (you don’t need cards or papers flying around) with easy access from the deck for receipt of cards, Timekeeper sheets, or electronic tapes.
• Accessible to the Referee for resolution of time / place discrepancies.
• If possible, there should also be easy access to Chief Judge Electronics and Chief Recorder / Scorer-Meet Office.

Before the Meet

• Pre-Meet Briefing With The Referee.
• Ask how the Referee wishes time / place discrepancies to be handled (RD)
• Would he like you to solve them according to the rules, and then advise him of the decision for his approval?
• How does the Referee want to handle the signing of each event’s results? (see SW 2.10.2)
• Introduce yourself to the other Key officials.
• Your responsibilities require you to interact with the Clerk of Course Chief Timekeeper-Recorder / Scorer (Desk Control) Chief Judge Electronics.
• How will combined events be indicated on the cards, sheets?
• Ensure the Chief Timekeeper briefs his Timekeepers where on the cards the splits and times are to be recorded (Chief Timekeeper and / or Referee will brief the timers).
• How will you receive your electronic tapes?
• How will the Chief Judge Electronics notify you of any problems?
• Are there Runners in place, if needed? (If pre-seeded event sheets are being used, often an assistant Chief Finish Judge can be assigned to collect these)
• Any special requirements for the Recorder / Scorer or office?
• How and when would the office like to receive the time cards or sheets? (i.e. distance events).
• Check out your working space and equipment required.

During the meet

• Monitor the performance of Assistant Finish Judges and address any problems.
• If the Timekeepers are putting the times in the wrong places on the time cards, advise the Chief Timekeeper of the lane and the problem that is occurring. The Chief Timekeeper looks after his Timekeepers.

Automatic Officiating Equipment

SW 11.1 – The operation of Automatic Officiating Equipment shall be under the supervision of appointed officials. Times recorded by Automatic Equipment shall be used to determine the winner, all placing and the time applicable to each lane. The placing and times so determined shall have precedence over the decisions of timekeepers.

In the event that a break-down of the Automatic Equipment occurs or that it is clearly indicated that there has been a failure of the Equipment, or that a swimmer has failed to activate the equipment, the recordings of the timekeepers shall be official. [See SW 13.3]

Automatic Judging and Timing System

SW 2.10.3 – Where Automatic Officiating Equipment is used to judge the finish of a race, the Chief Finish Judge must report the order of finish recorded by the equipment after each race.
• Automatic Officiating Equipment takes precedence over manual times, at times when it is deemed to be operating correctly.

Timing Factors

SW 11.2 – When Automatic Equipment is used, the results shall be recorded only to 1/100. When timing to 1/1000 of a second is available, the third digit shall not be recorded or used to determine time or placement.

In the event of equal times, all swimmers who have recorded the same time at 1/100 shall be accorded the same placing. Times displayed on the electronic scoreboard shall show only to 1/100 of a second.


SW 11.4 – Should a swimmer be disqualified during or following an event, such disqualification should be recorded in the official results, but no time or place shall be recorded or announced.
• This rule is for meets where official results are announced immediately after the race.
• At most meets you will leave the official time empty and place the card at the end of the event. Ensure the DQ is clearly marked for the Recorder/ Scorer.

SW 11.5 – In the case of a relay disqualification, legal splits up to the time of the disqualification shall be recorded in the official results.
• This is for the Recorder/Scorer at most meets.

SW 11.6 – All 50 meter and 100 meter splits shall be recorded for lead-off swimmers during relays and published in the official results.
• This is for the Recorder/Scorer at most meets.

Manual Times & Manual Placing

Determine the official times of the heat. (SW 11 Timing)
• FINA does not have meets that use manual times or manual finish judges who determine the official times of the heat(s).

SW 11.3 – Any timing device that is terminated by an official shall be considered a watch. Such manual times must be taken by three Timekeepers appointed or approved by the Member in the country concerned. All watches shall be certified as accurate to the satisfaction of the governing body concerned. Manual timing shall be registered to 1/100 of a second. Where no Automatic Equipment is used, the official manual time shall be determined as follows.

• When three watches are being used:
- In the event that all three watches agree, then that’s the time.

Official Manual Times

SW 11.3.1 – If two of the three watches record the same time and the third disagrees, then the two identical times shall be the official time.
• 1:02.66, 1:02.76, 1:02.66 The official time is 1:02.66

SW 11.3.2 – If all three watches disagree, the watch recording the intermediate time shall be the official time.
• 1:02.60, 1:02.76, 1:02.94 The official time is 1:02.76

CSW – When only TWO watches/plungers are being used, the arithmetic average to the 1/100 of a second shall be the official time.
• 1:02.65, 1:02.76 The official time is calculated as (.65+.76) / 2 = 0.705; truncated, it becomes 0.70; therefore the official time is 1:02.70
• This is where a calculator can be very handy. Complete the official time on the bottom of the card. Finish Judges do not enter into this decision. If three times are recorded on the time card, use the official time as calculated in SW 11.3.2 above.
• Place the time cards in sequence by official time fastest to slowest.
• Compare the time cards to the official Chief Finish Judge’s report.
• If the time sequence is not the same as the official placing, follow the procedure established with the Referee during the pre-meet briefing.

Finish Judges & Placings

SW 2.1.3 – When using finish judges without three (3) digital watches, the referee shall determine placing where necessary. Automatic Officiating Equipment, if available and operating, shall be consulted as stated in SW. 13.1
• Any problems the Chief Finish Judge is unable to resolve are referred to the Referee.
- If the Official times are identical, the swimmers shall be TIED (“TI”).
• The Referee will be advised of the placings according to his directions during the pre-meet briefing.
- This may be when the Recorder/Scorer or Desk Control brings the result sheets to the Referee to review and sign.
- When the heats of an event are combined, the cards and slips are sent to the Recorder/Scorer or Desk Control, according to the Referee’s directions.

Failure of Automatic Judging and/or Timing System (SW13.1 & SW13.2)

SW 13.1 – When Automatic Officiating Equipment (see FR 4) is used in any competition, the placing and times so determined and relay take-offs judged by such Equipment shall have precedence over the timekeepers.

Determining Placing

SW 13.2 – When the Automatic Equipment fails to record the place and or time of one or more swimmers in a given race:
SW 13.2.1 – Record all available Automatic Equipment times and places.
SW 13.2.2 – Record all human times and places.
SW 13.2.3 – The official place will be determined as follows:
- Complete comparisons and ranking procedure of Automatic Equipment times and places.
- The Chief Judge Electronics may indicate a malfunction or inactivation of the equipment (light touch) by a note on the computer print out paper.
- In this case the Chief Finish Judge should use the manual times and mark the time card (MT) Manual Time.
- Should the Chief Finish Judge see a discrepancy of 0.30 seconds or greater between an automatic time and the manual time, it should be viewed as a possible malfunction of the electronics and reviewed by the Referee or dealt with as determined in the pre-meet briefing.

SW 13.2.3 – The official place will be determined as follows:
SW – A swimmer with an Automatic Equipment time and place must retain his relative order when compared with the other swimmers having an Automatic Equipment time and place within that race.
SW – A swimmer not having an Automatic Equipment place but having an Automatic Equipment time will establish his relative order by comparing his Automatic Equipment time with the Automatic Equipment time of other swimmers.
SW – A swimmer having neither an Automatic Equipment place nor an Automatic Equipment time shall establish his relative order by the time recorded by the Semi —Automatic Equipment or by three digital watches.
- If automatic equipment fails, the time from three digital watches is official.

The Official Time

SW 13.3 – The official time will be determined as follows:
SW 13.3.1 – The official time for all swimmers having an Automatic Equipment time will be that time.
SW 13.3.2 – The official time for all swimmers not having an Automatic Equipment time will be the three digital watches or the Semi-Automatic Equipment time.
- If there is no automatic equipment time use three human times (Finish Judges not needed in Canada)

SW 13.3 – The official time will be determined as follows:
• Note: SW 3.2.3 – In the event that swimmers from the same or different heats have equal times registered to 1/100 second for either the eight place or sixteenth place, there shall be a swim-off to determine which swimmer shall advance to the appropriate finals. Such swim-off shall take place not less than one hour after all involved swimmers have completed their heat. Another swim-off shall take place if equal times are registered again.
• Notify the Referee or Meet Manager, in the method determined during the pre-meet briefings.
• Record the placing within the event on each card. (when swimmers from different heats have the same official time, whether automatic, manual , or a Referee’s decision, they shall all be TIED in their relative order of finish.) Ties will take up the same number of placings as the number of swimmers involved in the tie.

Ties & Exceptions


Official Time









• While entering the placings, ensure that the markers are also indicated: Exhibition Swims (EX), Official Splits (OS), and Disqualification’s (DQ).
• Place these at the bottom of your cards, results sheets and or electronic tapes.
• Bundle all the cards, lanesheets for the event (time cards, finish sheets and electronic tapes) together and forward as directed by the Referee (usually to the Recorder / Scorer or Desk Control in the Meet Office).

Refer to Official Placings SW 13.2.3

• If the electronics is working for all lanes in a race, use the electronics for the official times and placing.
• If the Chief Judge Electronics or a Timekeeper marks a lane on a tape or time card as a light touch, Failure of Automatic Judging and/or timing system is suspected. Use manual backup times.

After the Meet

• Ensure the Referee will be available for the time required to complete the results, in the event you require his approval or decision to resolve a problem.
• Check with the Referee, Recorder / Scorer, and / or Office for any out-standing problems.
• Return all meet materials, pens, staplers, etc.