SWIMNEWS ONLINE: February 1997 Magazine Articles

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Backwash features short clips, gossip, letters and opinions. Contributions are welcome.

Now for the rumours behind the news.

The front half or the back half?

Organizers of the Gelsenkirchen World Cup were faced with an amusing problem on account of the snazzy red "Ford Ka" that was offered as a first prize for a world record. In the event of two or more world records, the car was to go to the swimmer who had scored the most points on the performance ratings. The bad luck was that Marcel Wouda and Denis Pankratov, each the author of a new world record, scored exactly 1028 points each for their swims.

While the organizers hummed and hawed about what to do, it was decided that, barring another world record that scored higher, the car would go to the one who scored the highest on the second day, thus making the highest combined score. The swimmers both agreed.

The bad luck was for Pankratov, whose disqualification on Sunday morning in the 100m butterfly left him with no points at all. Wouda had won the car before the finals even began. A nice prize, even if the car itself was too small for the towering Dutchman...

38 Countries Medalled in FINA World Cup

China won the most medals with 59 / 41 / 41 for a total of 141, with Germany second 39 / 45 / 58 for 122 and Australia third 35 / 20 / 16 for 71. Canada picked up 2 / 13 / 9 with 24.

Popov to compete in Gothenburg

According to Elena Vaitsekovskaya, a journalist with Sport Express in Moscow, Alexander Popov will make his return to competition at the short course World Championships in Gothenburg, Sweden, in April.

After a stabbing incident in Moscow nearly took his life last August, Popov has made a smoother than smooth recovery. He said that since his coach, Gennadi Touretski, is going with the Australian team, he would also go. That must mean he is ready.

Half the tickets are gone

A great deal of interest is being shown in the coming World Swimming Short Course Championships in Gothenburg, April 1720, 1997. Of the 39,200 tickets available for the event, 23,700 tickets have already been sold or reserved.

During the four days of competition, each day consists of two events, heats in the morning and finals in the evening. The total capacity for the four days of competition is 39,200 seats.

"We expect to sell all available seats," says Anders Wernersten, General Secretary for the Championships. One of the reasons for this interest is that the organizers decided to make the Championships available for all people, hence the low ticket price. The cheapest seats for the heats and finals are 45 and 70 crowns. (About Cdn$9 and $14

The pool will be a Swedish-made temporary pool to be set up in a hockey arena approximately ten days before the start of the meet. Is this the solution for all towns that don't have the facilities to host such a high-profile meet?

Letter to the Editor:

"Athlete centered, coach driven and administratively supported I have no idea where it came from" Dave Johnson said in the last issue.
I said it.

Clive Rushton,
via e-mail from Athens, Greece
where he is National Coach

Letter to the Editor:

I have just received from my father all of the back issues for 1996 which he picked up from you a short time ago and I was quite astounded by the tremendous advances and improvements you have achieved in the 10 or 11 months that I missed my magazine. The introducton of full colour, the format changes and the general broadening of swim news and information really lift it into the category of a top sports magazine. So please accept my congratulations.

I've already had a chance to show it around some of the local Dallas/Fort Worth swim fraternity and it has received high praise.

I am in my seventh year here in Texas and over that period I have developed a very wide network of swimming friends and acquaintances both in University and Club swimming, not only in Texas, but in the neighbouring states of Okalhoma, Louisiana, Kansas, and New Mexico. I think that these contacts would be most effective and useful in furthering interest in your magazine here in the American South.

My own swimming background includes swimming from age 11 in the glory days of Victor Davis, Mike West and coach Cliff Barry at the Region of Waterloo SCa small club that won five Olympic medals. I will be forever proud of swimming in the same lane at our twice-a-day workouts as Victor during his last year with ROW.

In 1990 I received a full scholarship here at Texas Christian University, where I broke seven school records, two still standing. I eventually graduated with a B.Sc. Psychology, specializing in Sports Psychology which fits in well with my moving into full time coaching. Last August I was appointed head coach and program director for FAST (Fort Worth/Area Swim Team).

Once again, congratulation on the magazine it's just great.

Ron Forrest
Forth Worth, Texas

Letter to the Editor:

I have been reading SWIM Magazine since I was a young swimmer in 1980 and have kept up with most of your issues through friends, other coaches and now online. I think you have the best swimmig coverage available.

I recently read your online SWIMNEWS and like the international flavour of it. As a Canadian coach and past swimmer, I still think that the TAG rankings and Canadian coverage is an integral part of the magazine's importance. I also believe there should be a large photo or poster of one of Canada's top swimmers in each issue.

Almost everywhere in Canada the drop-out rate from swimming is frightening. Our swimmers have very few positive role models who are real and accessible in their daily lives. Canadian elite swimmers are virtually invisible in our media.

Your magazine is one of the only things which regularly unites so many of Canada's swimmers, officials, and coaches.

Mike Effray,
Victoria, B.C.

Does anyone out there really care?

I am truly amazed at another bureaucratic decision regarding the Canada Games.

For four years many of our young athletes have been setting their sigths on the Canada Games in Brandon, Manitoba next August. It is particularly true in Prince Edward Island. The opportunity to represent your province, your club against many of the up and coming stars of Canadian swimming, is an exciting prospect.

These games mark another first. They are being held in a six-lane pool, thus depriving four swimmers a thrilling opportunity to swim in a final or the consolations.

There are thousands of swimmers who would give anything to place 16 th and swim a personal best.

Another first, due to limited space: the athletes will not be allowed inside the pool before their events, but will be in an adjacent arena and marshalled through a 30' corridor to the pool deck. The Brandon organizing committee hopes to have closed circuit T.V. monitors for the swimmers to follow the races. VIPs, parents, and spectators will use the limited on-deck seating.

I would love for someone to explain to me why we always seem to put athletes second.

Another beef is that, as a volunteer coach, I can take swimmers to the Canadian Nationals with level II Coaching Certification. The Canada Games require Level III Certification. I am not against education and coaches upgrading their knowledge in all areas, but why do I need a higher certification to attend a lower level of competition than nationals?

I have decided to hang up the stop watch and whistle due to all of the above decisions. I feel like I have been lying to my swimmers all these years. Give your best and you'll be rewarded partially.

David Campbell,
Coach, Charlottetown Y Blue Fins, PEI

Thanks to all

Thanks to all those that called, faxed and e-mailed comments on our last issue, a small sampling of same:

Great magazine, best of luck with the new endeavour.

Paul Bergen, Head Coach,
Solotar Swim Team, Fairfax, Virginia.

Congratulations on a great new magazine.

Jack Simon, Head Coach,
Shore Aquatics, California

The new magazine looks great.

Kurt Krumpholtz, Speedo America,
Los Angeles, CA

Just got my first copy of SWIMNEWS and it looks terrific. Congratulations on the change.

John Leonard, Excecutive Director,
American Swimming Coaches Association,
Ft.Lauderdale, Florida

Your magazine and your web site are an underrated jewel if you're at all interested in following swimming. I have two daughters, Jenny and Chrissy, who have just joined Etobicoke Swimming. I would like to take you up on your offer for a complimentary copy of the Olympic issue from last August.

Terry Macaulay,
Etobicoke, ONT

Congratulations on the great looking new format. It will undoubtedly make SWIMNEWS the world standard in swimming publications. I am anxiously awaiting the next issue.

Darin Muma, Head Coach,
Scarborough Swim Club

Remember... It's not true until it has been officially denied

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