USMS tentatively reschedules Short Course National Championship for July 21-25 and Long Course National Championship for Oct. 6-10
SARASOTA, Fla. — U.S. Masters Swimming has postponed its 2021 Spring National Championship and 2021 Summer National Championship because of the coronavirus pandemic, the organization announced on Thursday.
Spring Nationals, which has been renamed the 2021 USMS Short Course National Championship, is now tentatively scheduled for July 21-25 at the Greensboro Aquatic Center in Greensboro, North Carolina, and Summer Nationals, renamed the 2021 USMS Long Course National Championship and is hosted by the Greater Cleveland Sports Commission, is tentatively scheduled for Oct. 6-10 at the SPIRE Institute in Geneva, Ohio. Both name changes are for just 2021.
“We have been in constant contact with our event hosts and volunteer leadership and monitoring health guidelines and recommendations to determine if in-person USMS pool national championships can be held safely in 2021,” USMS CEO Dawson Hughes says. “In the best interests of our membership, volunteers, and event directors, we have decided postponing these events was the best course of action at this time. We remain hopeful that these marquee events can be held in 2021 once vaccines are more widely available and conditions improve. The safety of our members, coaches, volunteers, and staff will continue to be our top priority.”
To implement social distancing at the rescheduled events, USMS anticipates limiting the number of participants and extending each event from four days to five to reduce the number of people in the facility at one time.
USMS and event organizers are also working on other measures to ensure the safety of participants. Any new information or additional adjustments will be announced when finalized, and full meet information for Short Course Nationals is expected when registration opens in May.
“The decision to postpone the meet wasn’t made lightly,” Short Course Nationals Host Committee Chair Hill Carrow says. “We will continue monitoring the coronavirus and spend the next several months determining best practices to implement for our national championship. We hope swimmers will have an opportunity to experience our amazing facility and enjoy their time in Greensboro in a safe and fun manner this summer.”
Says David Gilbert, president and CEO of GCSC, “Greater Cleveland Sports Commission is committed to the safety of all involved in our hosted events and is excited to support Long Course Nationals this fall. We are looking forward to hosting USMS athletes with any health guidelines that may be necessitated while still providing the wonderful experience that our organization and our partners at SPIRE are known for providing.”
USMS plans to host the 2021 TYR Last One Fast One virtual event April 16-May 2 to give members a chance to race their fellow competitors across the country from the safety of their local pool or body of open water. Times can be submitted manually or via a smartwatch, and participants can use the Swim.com app to view results and earn a digital badge. Additional details will be announced in the coming weeks.
The 1,500-plus participants in the 2020 Toyota USMS Virtual Championships Powered by Swim.com, which had a similar format to the 2021 Last One Fast One, completed 5,500 pool and open water races.
“We hope to continue our success from last year in offering swimmers the chance to participate in a fun event while we await the return to more traditional competitions, including our pool national championships,” Hughes says. “We will continue offering virtual events, including the ePostal National Championships, the Swim.com Fitness Series, and additional challenges on the Swim.com app, while also supporting the return of local meets and open water events where safe and appropriate following our return to competition guidance.”
Swimmers are encouraged to check usms.org for the latest information regarding all of USMS’s pool, open water, and ePostal national championships.
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