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BSG 2023 Swimming


BSG Games Captain remarks

Paul Mak,  email


Condo Sports Captains

Condo 1  – Janet O’Connell, email

Condo 2  – Rob MacLean, email

Condo 3  –  Doug Bonar, email

Condo 4  – Vicki Gladwish, email

                     Peter Gladwish, email

Condo 5  – Carron Canning, email



Timekeeper Training        Sunday Aug 20th                 12:30 – 1:00

Swimmers Check-in                                                       1:00 – 1:15

Individual Swims              Warm-up                              1:15 – 1:30

                                               Ladies                                   1:30 – 2:15  approx.

                                               Men                                      2:15 – 3:00  approx.

Relays                                 Warm-up                              3:00 – 3:15  approx.

                                              Swim relay                            3:15 – 4:00  approx.


Sport Rules

Individuals will compete, by gender, in the following five-year age groups:  under 60, 60 to 64, 65 to 69, 70 to 74, 75 to 79 and over 80.

The first half for each sex will be for Front Crawl, followed by Breast Stroke.

The relays will be open to all ages.  The order for Swim Relay is Breast Stroke, Front Crawl, Front Crawl then Front Crawl. 


  1. A total of 6 volunteers will be needed to act as timekeepers. Three timekeepers are required for each of 2 lanes (#1 and #3).
  2. The timekeepers will also monitor relay transitions during relay races and advise of any infractions.
  3. During Check-in, 2 of the 6 volunteers will direct arriving swimmers while 4 will staff the Registration Desk (Ladies, Swim Relay, Men).
  4. A 7th volunteer will man the Registration Desk during races to record results.

The BSG Swim Captain will be the Marshall as well as any other roles as required; e.g., Starter.


6 stopwatches, whistle for Starter, bullhorn for Marshall, 2 tables for Registration Desk, 8 chairs for volunteers, chairs for swimmers / supporters.


  1. All swimmers must be changed and on the pool deck by 1:15pm.
  2. Upon arrival, swimmers must report to Registration Desk at the west end of the pool deck to confirm attendance and the events they will swim.  The Registration Desk will check-off  swimmer names on the preprinted race sheets accordingly.
  3. The preprinted race sheets will have been prepared by BSG Swim Captain as “BSG Swimming 2023” spreadsheet and heats pre-assigned based on Sex, Stroke, Age Group, with 2 swimmers per heat.
  4. Warm-up for 15 minutes is mandatory:
    1. Warm-up prepares the muscles, heart and lungs for exertion.
    2. Sudden exertion without warm-up increases the risk of heart attacks and/or strokes.
    3. Warm-up means swimming up and down the length of the pool at moderate exertion levels.
    4. It does not mean standing around in the pool chatting with your friends.
    5. Swimmers who do not participate in the warm-up as described here will not be allowed to compete.
  5. The Registration Desk will notify the Marshall the names of swimmers on the next heat.
  6. When the Marshall calls the swimmers’ names, they will be assigned Lane Numbers (either #1 or #3) based on heat setup on the preprinted race sheets (first name = left lane, second name = right lane).
    1. At the end of each race, the timekeepers will pass the time information to the Registration Desk.
    2. The Registration Desk will write down the times to complete the entries on the preprinted race sheets.
    3. At the end of the meet, the Registration Desk will pass all completed preprinted race sheets to the BSG Swim Captain for updating “BSG Swimming 2023” spreadsheet which will be summarized and forwarded to BSG Statistics and Medal Count coordinators.
  7. All races will start at the western (window) end of the pool.
  8. All races will start with the swimmer in the water with (at least) one hand on the edge of the pool. There will be no racing (diving) starts.
  9. The Starter will initiate each race with the command “Timers ready?” followed by a short pause.  If the timers are ready, then “Swimmers ready?” followed by another short pause, then the blowing of a whistle.
  10. Breast Stroke swimmers must touch the end of the pool with both hands when turning and when finishing. Front Crawl swimmers can use either 1 or both hands (or feet if doing flip turns).
  11. Timing of a swim will end when the swimmer touches the end of the pool.
  12. Awarding of Individual Swimming medals will be based on the three fastest times drawn across the appropriate gender/stroke/age grouping for individual swimming.  Awarding of Relay medals will be by the three fastest times.  There are no “swimming finals” per se.

Individual Swimming after 15 minute warm-up

  1. Individuals will swim in the following order:
    1. Ladies Front Crawl – by increasing age groups (59 or younger, 60 to 64, 65 to 69, 70 to 74, 75 to 79 and over 80).
    2. Ladies Breast Stroke – by increasing age groups as above.
    3. Men Front Crawl – by increasing age groups as above.
    4. Men Breast Stroke – by increasing age groups as above.
  2. Each swimmer will swim two lengths of the pool.
  3. Back Stroke is not allowed and any attempt will result in disqualification.

Swimming Relays after 15 minute warm-up

  1. Each relay team will consist of four (4) persons.
  2. Each Swim Relay team must have a minimum of one male and one female participant.
  3. Each Swim Relay team must have at least 1 Breast Stroke swimmer.
  4. Each Condo must set up at least 1 Swim Relay Team.
  5. All team members must be in the pool prior to the start of their heat.
  6. All swimmers must start with one hand in contact with the edge of the pool.
  7. Those swimming the 2nd, 3rd and 4th legs of a relay may not start until the incoming swimmer touches the end of the pool.  Any premature start will result in disqualification of the entire team.
  8. Should the “last” team formed have less than 4 swimmers, that team will swim in the last heat.  To make up a full team, swimmers who have already swum will be asked if they would like to swim again. 
  9. A maximum of two teams will race against each other at the same time – lanes 1 and 3 will be used.
  10. Each swimmer will swim two lengths of the pool.
  11. The stroke order will be Breast, Front Crawl (3 times).

Results and Medal Presentations

Results of the swimming, showing the individual times and placements, will be sent via email to all Condo Swim Captains on the day after swimming.  

Condo Swim Captains can then forward the results to their swimmers and notify those who have won medals.

Medal presentations will be at the Recreation Centre on the next day at 5:00 pm approx in the Rec Centre.

Post game suggestions from Michael Koscec:


Proposals for Consideration



Prepared by Michael Koscec

September 15, 2023


The Ballantrae Summer Games are an outstanding event. There were approximately 700 participants and 200 volunteers in 2023. This impressive level of involvement demonstrates the strength and commitment of the Ballantrae community. That’s why Ballantrae is such a special and exceptional place to live.


The purpose of this position paper is not in anyway to take away from the tireless work that the organizers and volunteers contributed. The objective is to build on this foundation of hard work and to make the 2025 Games even better especially as it relates to the swimming events.


Most sports events at the Summer Games that I am familiar with seem to follow similar “guiding principles”. Specifically, each Condo fields a team in a particular event that will represent the Condo in that event. If there are more participants registered to play in an event than can be fielded, the Condo holds “play downs” to determine the final composition of the team that will represent the Condo.

Let me provide a couple of examples. There were more participants than required to make up the two teams that were going to compete in bocce. Play downs were held to select the best bocce players that were ultimately going to represent their respective Condos. This process yielded an A and B team for each Condo and resulted in a very exciting and very competitive tournament.

Let’s look at another example. In water volleyball two Condos had insufficient numbers of players to form a team. This was the opposite situation to bocce where there were more players than needed. In this case, in 2023, Condo 1 and Condo 3 were combined to make up a team. This was arranged ahead of time and with the consent of the two Condos.

Therefore, the guiding principles that can be gleaned from the above is that each Condo fields its own team or teams that are formed prior to the start of completion. The rules are clear:

  1. Each Condo fields the same number of teams or the same number of individual competitors for an event. There is no “stacking” where one Condo has an advantage over another Condo by fielding more teams or more individuals than other Condos.
  2. There is no cross pollination of competitors from one Condo to another. In other words teams are comprised of members from only their own Condo. And individual competitors only play for their own Condo. They don’t play for another Condo. The only exception to this guiding principle occurred as described above for water volleyball where two Condos were combined to make up one team.



Based on my experience in 2023, swimming didn’t follow any guiding principles that seem to govern many other Summer Games sports events.

Here are some examples:

  1. Organizers arbitrarily made up swimming relay teams. For example, when the first teams were formed, I noticed that two swimmers from Condo 4 were one relay team and a third Condo 4 swimmer was assigned to another relay team. Why separate swimmers from the same Condo if the Summer Games are a competition among the various Condos.
  2. Condos 1, 2 and 3 fielded 6 swimmers for the 4-person relay team.
  3. As a result swimmers were combined from different Condos to make up additional relay teams.
  4. In the case of Condo 4 one of our swimmers missed our relay race. He showed up late and swam for another team.
  5. In the individual events many swimmers competed against swimmers in other age categories, therefore their results depended solely on the timekeepers for their placement. Some results posted initially were inaccurate and had to be corrected. (or should have been)
  6. Pairs of swimmers were called to compete in a race, but no information was given to the swimmers regarding the age category and Condo number of their competitor.
  7. The swimming heats were rushed moving from one event to the next with no breaks. For example, as soon as the ladies individual races were completed, the relay races started immediately and then straight into the men’s individual races with no breaks in between. There was no need to rush because the swimming competition ended about an hour ahead of schedule.

Specific Administrative Issues

  1. At registration swimmers were not asked to confirm their Condo number and age category.
  2. Timekeepers were not always given the last name of the swimmers.

It seems that the reason swimming doesn’t appear to have any guard rails like other events is that swimming is a “timed” event: everything revolves around timekeeping and therefore is a bit of a free for all. I imagine this may also apply to similar “timed” events like walking and cycling. Regardless, this position paper deals specifically with swimming.



The following recommendations are being made in order to address the issues raised above and to improve the overall experience for the swimmers.

  1. At time of registration, the person should confirm: the person’s name (obviously) but also their Condo number, age category and swimming events.
  2. The timekeepers should be given a form showing the swimmer’s Condo number, last name, name of the event (crawl, breast stroke), age category and the lane number.
  3. In the individual swimming competitions, every effort must to be made to ensure two swimmers are competing against each other from the same age category. When individual swimmers are called to compete, the official should confirm the age category with each swimmer and let the swimmer know the Condo number of their competitor.
  4. Don’t rush. In the individual races, all the swimmers in a particular age category and event should be called to come forward in preparation for their race. This way the swimmers who are not racing the first heat are waiting together for their turn to race in the next heat. This will ensure that only swimmers in their respective age category are swimming against each other. Make sure that the timekeepers’ forms accurately reflect all the swimmers’ information for the race.
  5. If a swimmer doesn’t have someone to race against, the swimmer should be asked if he/she wants someone to pace him/her. The pace swimmers would be asked to volunteer. The “solo” racers plus pacers should be held at the end so that the pacer does not have another race.
  6. There are five Condos therefore there should only be 5 relay teams and not six or seven to accommodate all the swimmers. If a Condo has more than 4 swimmers for the relay than the Condo swimmers select their four best swimmers to make up the team. This shouldn’t be too difficult because at this stage knowledge of the strongest swimmers should be apparent.
  7. Swimmers cannot swim for a Condo relay team except their own. If a Condo team is short a swimmer the team can decide that one of their members will swim twice. Alternatively, the team can choose a swimmer ahead of time to join their team from another Condo if the other swimmer agrees to join. The race organizers will not arbitrarily assign swimmers from one Condo to another if a Condo is short a swimmer.
  8. If a Condo team cannot fill all four slots and they cannot find another swimmer or if no one on their team is willing to swim twice, then the Condo team will not compete.
  9. There should be no particular order of swimming styles in the relay. For example if a team chooses to swim breast stroke second or third that’s okay. Additionally if a team chooses to have two swimmers swimming breaststroke and two front crawl that should be acceptable. As long as there is a minimum of one swimming style included the number and order should be up to the team. (In a normal swimming competition where all four swimming styles are included a specific order is followed. But this is not the case here since only two strokes are included.)
  10. The schedule should build in a minimum of 5-10 minutes between events: Individual ladies: 5-10 minutes break, Relay: 5-10 minutes break, followed by the individual men.



These recommendations are being forwarded in an effort to streamline the overall swimming competition: to bring greater structure in running the races, to avoid mistakes, improve the accuracy of results, eliminate confusion and improve the overall experience for the swimmers.  




Safety is paramount.  Please don’t “run” at any time.  The Pool Surround will be crowded and slippery, please be careful when moving around.

Back Stroke is forbidden due to safety concerns because swimmers cannot see the end of the pool they are swimming towards.

Click to see the BSG 2023 Swimming-Ladies-Breast-Stroke-Front-Crawl-Results

Click to see the Swimming-Mens-Breast-Stroke-Front-Crawl-Results

Click to see the Swimming-Mixed-Relay-Results