What are Open Meets?
Open Meets or Galas are swimming competitions organised by other swimming clubs.
They will usually be licensed by the ASA at levels 1, 2, 3 or 4, with level 1 being the highest and 4 lowest.
Swimmers will be competing against swimmers from the other clubs and medals will usually be awarded to top 3 from each age group.
Results obtained from open meets can be used to qualify for higher level meets like Surrey County Championships, London Regional Championships, Nationals etc..
Who is eligible to attend Open Meets?
Open meets are optional for all swimmers, but as a member of a competitive swimming club, swimmers are advised to attend open meets on a regular basis to make sense of all the hard training that has gone in over the course of a season.
Eligibility is dependent on the swimmer meeting :
the age requirement. Most open meets will have a minimum age of 9 yrs old and some will also have an upper age limit. The age is usually taken as of on the day of the meet or some will take age of swimmer as at end of year (31 December).
the minimum qualifying standards. This is also sometimes referred to as the 'lower limit' time (LLT) or 'qualifying time' (QT). This means swimmers must be faster than or equal to this time in the event they want to enter. This will vary from meet to meet and some meets (eg, level 4) may not have any qualifying times at all.
the upper time limit. Some meets will also specify a 'upper limit' time (ULT), which means swimmers must not be faster than this time in the event they want to enter. They can still enter into other events that they satisfy the ULT for.
Evidence of any qualifying times may be required depending on the level of the meet. Level 1 & 2 meets will usually require your qualifying times to be at the ASA database, eg, obtained from previous meets. For lower level meets (eg, levels 3 & 4), times taken from club time trials may suffice, please check the conditions set out by each organiser.
When are Open Meets held?
Since Open Meets are held by other swimming clubs, they are held almost every weekend for the whole duration of the season (Sept->July) at various pools around the country.
The Gala Secretary will work with the head coach and put together a list of Open Meets for the start of the season (Sept). The meets are put together with the aim to give swimmers the chance to gain competition experience and also for swimmers at the right level, the chance to obtain the relevant qualifying times required to enter into the main championships, eg, County and Regionals.
For current list of Open Meets the club has committed to attending, please goto Team App -> Documents -> Gala Schedule.
How do I enter an Open Meet?
For each Open Meet the club is attending, the Gala Secretary will send out in advance the following documents on Team App:
promoters meet conditions. This sets out the conditions for all swimmers wishing to attend the meet. Please read this carefully to ensure you are happy with the conditions before submitting your entries.
meet programme. This will detail the order of events for the duration of the meet weekend along with approximate session times. The final session times will be published by promoters once they have received all entries.
meet qualifying times. This will detail any lower and/or upper limit times. Please make sure you meet these before submitting your entries.
meet entry form. All entries must be completed and submitted using this form. Any other formats will not be accepted. Each form is specific for that meet so do not use any other forms. Please read the instructions detailed in the entry form to submit your entries.
Once you have completed the entry form, please email it back to the Gala Secretary by the internal closing date as specified for that meet.
Please note, the internal deadline is as set out by the Gala Secretary and will be different to the promoters own closing date. This deadline is in order to give the Gala Secretary time to collate all entries and submit it to the meet promoters in 1 file in the correct format.
How do I pay for my meet entries?
Once you have completed the entry form and emailed back to the Gala Secretary, please pay the fees due using online bank transfer to the clubs account (details are in the entry form).
Please ensure all fees are paid by 10pm on closing date as set out in entry form for that meet.
NOTE: a snapshot of the clubs account will be taken at 10pm on closing date and only entries from swimmers who have paid the fees will be submitted.
So its important that fees are paid on time and you are using the correct transfer reference so that your payment can be reconciled correctly.