For those who aren't aware, an Open Meet is a non-team competition hosted by a Club e.g. Worcester that is "open" to swimmers from any other club to enter
Open Meets are typically "graded" with qualifying times i.e. swimmers having to meet a minimum standard (faster than time X) while sometimes the ability of swimmers is restricted to a maximum standard too (no faster than time Y)
There will be wide range of events to choose from e.g. 50m Freestyle to 400m Individual Medley with swimmers not limited to how many races they may enter. This is what makes Open Meets so popular as they provide an excellent opportunity to swim lots of races - whereas at a normal gala, you may just get two or three 25m/50m/100m swims for the team
Although swimmers are very welcome to enter as many Open Meets as they want (NB Club competitions always take priority), I would urge a little caution and not do too many. Also, as they are usually over a whole day - or even a weekend - Open Meets are much more fun with a large squad of swimmers there to support each other (and bring the Coach coffee!?)
To this end, I will nominate a number of Open Meets each year that will be "Club events" i.e. we will look to take lots of swimmers, entries will be handled by the Club (thanks to Lizzie Monkhouse), there will be coaching staff on poolside, etc. All other Open Meets will need to be organised by swimmers & parents themselves - though I am always happy to provide advice
The target Open Meets for the second half of the 2011-12 season are....
Nuneaton & Bedworth: 31st March - 1st April
This is a Level 2 Meet so typically suitable for swimmers with County Qualifying Times. Nuneaton is a fast pool so ideal for swimmers aiming at Regional and/or National Qualifying Times. All ages with full programme: 50/100/200 all strokes plus 200/400 IM
Gloucester: 12th - 13th May
Another Level 2 Meet at a super fast pool, highly recommended. All ages with full programme except 800/1500 F/C. Final opportunity for Age Group swimmers to achieve Regional Qualifying Time but suitable for most swimmers who have the qualifying times. Please note though that Sat 12th May is Rnd 2 of National Junior League so any swimmers aged 12/u (as at 8/9/12) will still be expected to represent the Club in the league gala that night and may therefore have to miss session 3 (Sat pm)
Stourbridge: Junior "B" Grade: 27th May (at Wolverhampton)
Ages 9, 10, 11, 12, 13 & 14 - 50m sprints plus 100 IM. Suitable for all swimmers below Regional level, perfect for the less experienced swimmers. Postponed until September 16th!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Cardiff: 15th - 17th June
Level 1 long course Meet so only suitable for those with or close to Regional Qualifying Times. Final chance for any swimmers targeting National Qualifying Times this year.
Boldmere Water Carnival: 30th June - 1st July (at Stechford)
Perfect end of season meet. Level 3 so suitable for all swimmers not competing at Nationals. All ages with full programme except 400 IM and 800/1500 F/C. Highly recommended, let's take a big team! No longer a Club designated Open Meet, see below
As always, if you have any queries, please feel free to speak to me
Mark Stowe, Head Coach
As the County Relay Championships have been moved to Sunday 1st July, the Boldmere Open Meet will very regrettably not be a Club designated competition - though swimmers are very welcome to go on the Saturday (please make your own entries)
Instead, as a season finale, we will go to the Gloucester Open Meet on 14/15th July (also Level 3). In truth, this is far from ideal as anyone selected for Round 3 of the Mercian League will be unable to swim in the final session on the Saturday (just as the Junior League swimmers are having to do on May 12th). Please keep an eye on the noticeboard for details.