BELCONNEN, Australia, December 22. THE pathway to selection onto the Australian Swim Team for future events has never been clearer with Swimming Australia announcing new selection standards leading into Rio.
Developed by the Swimming Australia High Performance Committee and endorsed by the Board of Swimming Australia, swimmers and coaches will now know exactly what times need to be swum, up to two years out from a major benchmark event.
In 2014-15 qualifying standards will be established off the results at this year’s 2013 FINA World Championships, with a strategic alignment based off a percentage margin between these international time standards and the times required to be selected for other national teams.
Swimming Australia Director of High Performance Michael Scott says this new approach allows the international time standard to cascade through the entire national program from the senior team right through to the junior ranks.
“Agreeing on these time standards now means coaches and athletes know what’s required to gain selection going forward,” said Scott.
“The goals are there, they have been set and the challenge is to meet them and then exceed expectations. We have to be thinking about what it will take to perform at our best in Rio and we have to apply that to now.”
For the next two years the qualifying time for the senior benchmark teams will be the equivalent to the eighth placed time into the final at the 2013 FINA World Championships in Barcelona. Times will then change following the 2015 FINA World Championships and so on.
This process and time standards will go on to become the time standard used for all other national team qualifying times, based on a percentage increase for second tier and junior teams.
This strategic time standard approach aims to raise the standards of all athletes at all levels, across all event groups of the national program by creating a logical progression aligned to the highest international level.
These time standards will be reassessed and realigned every two years following the long course FINA World Championships and remain current for the following two-year period. This process will also provide coaches and swimmers with clarity on what the qualifying times are, well in advance of the development of the specific selection criteria for each team.
Qualifying times will be established for the following three tiers of the national team*;
? Benchmark — Olympics, World Championships, Commonwealth Games and Pan Pacific Championships;
? Australia A — World University Games and or Australia A team tour;
? Junior — World Junior Championships and Junior Pan Pacific Championships
*Note: Due to the specific nature of the Paralympic and IPC classification system, time standards and selection for the Paralympic program will continue to be developed on an ongoing basis and be event specific.
To see the Selection Criteria in detail go to http://www.swimming.org.au/selection-criteria
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