The big news in this issue is coverage of the Pan American Games, hosted for the second time by Winnipeg, MB, 32 years after the memorable 1967 Games.
Although participation in the swimming events was small, especially for women, competition for medals was intense. The 8 Canadian records bettered by the women's team, winning 9 golds, was one of the very best international results ever. The men's team picked up four golds and Curtis Myden again lowered his 400 IM national record. Canada's 13 golds topped all countries.
After it was over, the US team took 37 medals in total to Canada's 31, they could also claim supremacy. Brazil's strong men's team won 7 golds giving them first spot in the men's competition.
The competition was under the old familiar format with prelims in the morning session and A and B finals in the evening session.
The Canadian team then travelled to Australia for Pan Pacs at the end of August, which meant the Canadian Summer Nationals was deprived of the top 30 or so swimmers in the country. The Summer Nationals in Montreal, Aug 11-14, was held under the new format with stroke 50s and semi-finals for 50s and 100s, but B finals in the 200s and 400s, all in a four-day format. Some people actually liked it. Go figure-trying to shoehorn 38 events into four days with three swims a day for some events.
US Nationals overlapped Pan Ams, so US swimmers in Winnipeg missed the first two days of their nationals. The American Pan Pac team was selected from the 1998 Nationals, so many did not swim in their main event or were just swimming through the competition. Surely this devalued some of the events. However such is the depth of American swimming that this was hardly noticed. The Jenny and Lenny show provided its usual fast swimming to have everyone anticipating their next performances at the Pan Pacs.
Two articles by Wayne Goldsmith aimed at younger swimmers complete this issue. If you have suggestions for topics to be covered, let us know.
TAG times include all competitions. Corrections/additions should be reported immediately so as not to miss out in our final top 50 for the long course season.