I would like to thank all those who have contributed to determining the process used to select our Canada Games team, both in earlier discussions in 2019 and 2020 and again over the last month. A month ago, as we came out of a full shutdown, the Technical Committee met to consider the impact of Covid disruption on our swimmers’ readiness for the March Long Course Championships and the May Trials. By the time their recommendations were sent to clubs for comments, we were moving to Phase 1 with few restrictions. Yesterday, only hours before the Board considered both recommendations and comments, the Premier announced a return to normality. After reviewing all contributions, the Board is convinced that everyone shares a common goal to choose the best team to represent our province. Nevertheless, there are different views on how this should be done and rapid changes in Covid rules have affected how our intentions can be turned into action.
At its regular meeting on 24th February 2022, the SNB Board unanimously decided that:
- There will be two qualifying opportunities for the Canada Games 2022 Team:-
- Long Course Championships in a three-day format on March 25-27; and
- Canada Games Trials in a four-day format on May 5-8.
2.All swimmers hoping to represent our province at the Canada Games must compete in the Trials, but selection will be based on their best times from these two meets.
3.Swimmers competing in the SNC Easterns on April 21-24 will not be able to count their times as CG qualifying times.
In reaching this position, the Board has considered not just fastest times, but also ensuring fairness for all our swimmers and the importance of respecting the process and criteria previously determined and announced to parents and swimmers in November 2021. Our swimmers have faced continual disruption over the last two years, and we want to minimize additional changes.
Moving forward, we ask all clubs and coaches to focus on preparing your swimmers for these two events, and for the Canada Games. Board members recognise that some people will disagree with this decision. In autumn this year, after the Canada Games, we will organise meetings to evaluate our performance and process and to agree on a programme that will allow swimmers, coaches, and parents to plan and prepare for 2025 Games in St Johns NL.
Once again, I offer a very sincere thanks to all those who contributed to this discussion and to the commitment of swimmers and parents during these discussions.
Stephen Wyatt, President Swimming New Brunswick