Alexa McQuaid named PEI’s flagbearer
Please follow the link for the Guardian news article
Please follow the link for the Guardian news article
Members of the PEI competitive swimming community,
I want to start off by congratulating the swimmers who have been named to PEI’s 2017 Canada Games Swim Team and wish you all great swims in Winnipeg. I know you will do our small province proud.
On July 10th, 2017, the Swim PEI Board of Directors met to appoint swimmers to the 2017 Canada Games Swim Team. There were 12 spots available for able body females and the same number for able body males. There were two swimmers named to the Special Olympics team, with the same number named to the Para Swim team.
After appointment of the Team was announced, two appeals were launched challenging the decisions of the Board. In accordance with Swim PEI’s Appeals Policy, an independent Appeals Panel was appointed, and heard the two appeals on July 25, 2017.
The panel subsequently dismissed both appeals, and confirmed the Board’s appointment of swimmers to the Team.
In naming swimmers to the team, the Board was committed to three principles:
After extensive consultation with our coaches and research from other jurisdictions, the Swim PEI Board approved a Canada Games Selection Criteria policy in January and shortly thereafter, held two open meetings with swimmers and parents to explain the rationale and answer any questions.
The policy development was led by our Board’s Vice-President and supported by our Board executive – who collectively have extensive experience in sport administration, governance and policy development – and no direct relationship with any current PEI swimmer.
The 12 spots on the female able body team were filled by 12 swimmers who met all the criteria set out in the Selection Criteria policy, and were chosen by the coaching staff to best represent PEI at the Games.
There were 12 spots available on the male able body team, with only 10 swimmers having met all the criteria in the Selection Criteria Policy. Those 10 swimmers were named to the team.
The Board then reviewed the Selection Criteria and the mandate of Swim PEI, and decided by a majority vote, that the two vacant spots on the male able body team should be offered to the only other two able body males on the training team who met the eligibility criteria, other than having achieved a qualifying time.
3. Long-term success of the sport on PEI.
The long-term goal of Swim PEI is to increase the number of swimmers from PEI who compete and medal at national level meets. An important step in the pathway to that goal is to increase our swimmers’ exposure to national level meets, such as the Canada Games.
Offering the two vacant spots on the male’s team to these two swimmers was an opportunity to do just that – an investment in the future of our sport.
To leave these spots vacant would have been a missed opportunity, and an abdication of the responsibility we have to develop the sport and create a platform for our swimmers’ future success at the national level.
In the Fall, the Board will be offering members of the swimming community an opportunity to provide feedback on all aspects of the 2017 Canada Games experience so we can ensure we build on the things that went well, and learn from those areas where improvement is needed.
For now, our attention turns to our swimmers who will represent PEI next week in Winnipeg.
Swimmers – while you are representing Canada’s smallest province, remember those PEI athletes who have preceded you and have won big on the national and international stage. Go with their legacy in mind, and the confidence that you have put in the hard work to achieve personal best results.
We will be cheering you on in person, and from afar.
President, on behalf of Swim PEI Board of Directors
Mitch O’Shea, Vice-President
Elaine Cormier, Secretary
Marguerite Middleton, Treasurer
Christine Da Prat, CBAC delegate
Bill Meisner, SDSC delegate
Kim Smith, UPEI Panthers delegate
George Lyle, Director-at-Large
Nicole Manuel, Executive Director
A P.E.I. swimming official is set to receive her second Sport PEI award in recognition of her officiating work in major competitions over the last year.
Marguerite Middleton is one of 10 officials from Canada that worked at international events in 2016, including Olympic trials and world championships.
She is receiving the Official of the Year award for her work in swimming, a sport she became involved with 20 years ago.
“My children started in swim and obviously like any other parent you get involved when they start swimming and you keep going.”
Middleton said she worked through her levels as an official, adding she stuck with it because of her work at the Canada Games when it was held on the Island in 2009.
“There are various levels, lots of levels and it takes a long time to be a senior official in Canada.”
After working her way up to the top levels, Middleton can now officiate at international events.
“That’s where you get to see the really cool stuff, that’s where you get to officiate the Olympians and that’s pretty cool.”
Middleton told Matt Rainnie of CBC’s Island Morning she had officiated Canada’s Olympic hopefuls before August’s Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro where she was a starter. In that role, she makes sure the swimmers are all set and gives the starting beep to get them in the water.
“This year I also did FINA in Windsor in December, which is the first time that championship meet has been in Canada,” she said. “It was awesome – I was one of two starters for the entire week.”
At the event, Middleton started all the women’s races.
“So it’s 12 sessions, mornings and evenings, six days straight. But it was incredible.”
When asked about officiating an event in which Michael Phelps, the most decorated Olympic athlete of all time, was competing, Middleton admits she was nervous.
“You sure don’t want to mess up his start,” she laughed. “When they get up on the blocks, as a starter you usually don’t know who they are but at the larger events they all get introduced. Then the pressure is really on because you know who is on the blocks.”
As you know, Swimming Canada has been working on a comprehensive competition review over the past several months. This has been an ongoing process and I am proud to share with you today the first phase of our resulting Competition Improvement Plan for national events:
In addition, the supporting Preliminary Meet Information:
and 2017 time standards have been finalized.:
https://swimming.ca/content/uploads/2016/06/2017-standards.pdf have been finalized.
Change can be challenging, but it can also be exciting and present tremendous opportunity. Refreshing Swimming Canada’s national events is crucial to our future success in becoming a world-leading swimming nation. When making changes such as these it is critical to monitor their effectiveness continually. Swimming Canada will evaluate the changes on an ongoing basis and make adjustments as necessary. The improvement we need to meet our goals as a nation dictates that we make the most of every opportunity, maximize our assets and work together as a community to build a stronger, faster and deeper pool of swimmers to represent Canada.
Chief Executive Officer, Swimming Canada