Sport PEI honors International swim official

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.”

Special events

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.”

Update from Swimming Canada

Hello All,

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:

https://swimming.ca/content/uploads/2016/06/sc-ciplan-ne-2016-eng-final.pdf

In addition, the supporting Preliminary Meet Information:

https://www.swimming.ca/en/resources/teams-selection-policies/national-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.

Sincerely,

Ahmed El-Awadi

Chief Executive Officer, Swimming Canada