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USMS Hopes to Host 2006 Masters World Champs -- June 14, 2002

PHOENIX, June 14. UNITED States Masters Swimming hopes to host the 2006 FINA Masters World Championships, says Phil Whitten, Chairman of the USMS International Committee. "The Masters World Championships have only been held once in the USA, and that was back in 1992," Whitten said. "It's time to bring the meet back to the birthplace of Masters swimming. It's time the meet came home again."

"(USMS President) Jim Miller has indicated he wants us to host the meet in '06, and our committee is committed to making that happen," Whitten said.

Facilities interested in hosting the 6-7 day meet (up to 12 days in all to accommodte ll the aquatic disciplines), expected to attract some 4,000 to 7,000 Masters swimmers, should contact Whitten at swimphil@aol.com.

Whitten also indicated that USMS is very interested in hosting a Pan-Pacific and/or Pan-American Masters Championship meet.

Past Masters World Championships
Following the first "unofficial" World Championships in Toronto in 1978, Masters Swimming International (MSI) - the sport's first international governing body - held the first "official" Masters World Championship meet in Christchurch, New Zealand in 1984. In the aftermath of that meet, FINA took over the international governance of the sport.

In 1986, the third "first" Masters World championship was held in Tokyo, Japan. Since then, the meet has been held every two years: In Brisbane, Australia in 1988; Rio de Janeiro, Brazil in 1990; Indianapolis in 1992; Montreal, Canada in 1994; Sheffield, England in 1996; Casablanca, Morocco in 1998; Munich, Germany in 2000; and Christchurch, NZ, again, in 2002. The 2004 meet is scheduled for Riccione, Italy.