By Bob Seltzer
CAMBRIDGE, Mass., July 14. THIS year, officials from New England Masters (NEM) Swim Club and the Bay State Games organizers sat down and worked out an arrangement to make the State Games (BSG) more attractive to Masters swimmers.
BSG organizers agreed to eliminate tryout, prelim and final requirements for Masters, while NEM arranged to have the BSG competition receive USMS recognition status so that the swims would count towards USMS Top Ten. Neither talked about the possiblity of world records – but, then again, they did not take into account the incomparable talents of NEM 50+ ageless wonders.
Greg Shaw entered the BSG less than two weeks after a very relaxing vacation in Paris without ANY training. He therefore entered the 100 fly with no thought of breaking any records. No one thought that perhaps red wine and pate de foie gras taken in moderation (plus lots of swimming talent) might have a positive impact on swimming performance. But they may.
NEM's Greg Shaw swam a 1:01.70 100 fly and thereby broke the former world standard for men 50-54 of 1:01.94.
Meanwhile, while Greg was enjoying the pleasures of Paris with his family, Jacki Hirsty was engaged in some especially challenging swim sets and heavy weight lifting in preparation for one of her rare appearances at USMS Long Course Nationals. With no rest and competing at the same BSG meet, Jacki won the 50 free in 28.64, only a few tenths off Laura Val's world record. That record should be seriously challenged by Jacki when she swims it fully rested at Rutgers next month.
For complete Bay State Game swimming results go to: http://www.swimindex.com/meets/2003/bsg/