The British Summer Championships are diving back into the Ponds Forge pool in 2023 - and the dates for the qualifying window have been confirmed ahead of the major summer meet.
The 2023 edition of the British Summer Championships will take place at the Ponds Forge International Sports Centre in Sheffield from Saturday 22nd - Friday 28th July, following on from the huge success of last year's competition, which returned to its full format after a two-year, COVID-enforced hiatus. This year will again see the integration of para-swimming competition across the event, just a few days before the Para Swimming World Championships take place across the Pennines in Manchester.
Entry to this key end-of-season event - as well as the corresponding Home Nation Summer Meets - is by invitation only, based on performances recorded during the designated qualifying window.* That window will open on Friday 10th March and run through to Sunday 21st May 2023.
The 24 top-ranked swimmers in each event in each age grouping will be invited to attend the British Summer Championships, except for the 800m and 1500m Freestyle contests, where the top 18 athletes will be invited.
*Any swimmer identified as having achieved a British Para-Swimming points score of 400 points or higher, based on a swim between 1st September 2022 and 21st May 2023 as listed on British Para-Swimming long-course rankings, will be considered for invitation in that/those events.
Off the back of the 2022 Championships, following the relevant coaches survey and further consultation with key stakeholders, there are also some changes to the format of this year's event, which are detailed below, with further explanation on an attached presentation.
Speaking about the British Summer Championships returning to Ponds Forge after a hugely successful meet at the same venue in 2022, British Swimming Head of Performance Development Alan Lynn said: "In a busy summer of Championship racing at home and abroad, it's great to be going back to Ponds Forge for the third time in 2023, on the back of the British Para-Swimming Meet in March and the British Swimming Championships in April.
"Over the years, Sheffield has seen some of the fastest swimming in the UK and always generates an amazing atmosphere of support and appreciation for the athletes on show.
"The British Summer Championships bring together the very best swimmers across each age group, from the youngest boys and girls to some of our top senior internationals. They all look forward to returning to the Steel City to test their mettle in hotly-contested competition.
"As ever, we are hugely grateful to all our partners, stakeholders and our incredibly dedicated volunteer workforce, who provide all manner of support in ensuring we can stage a competition that has become such a huge part of the aquatics calendar in this country."
Councillor Martin Smith, Chair of the Economic Development and Skills Policy Committee at Sheffield City Council, added: “It’s fantastic to have the British Summer Championships returning to Sheffield for 2023. As a city of sport, we’re really happy to be playing such a significant role in supporting the nation’s rising talent, and we look forward to seeing our future elite swimmers taking to the water this summer.”
WHO ARE THE BRITISH SUMMER CHAMPIONSHIPS FOR?
The meet ONLY caters for the following categories of swimmer:
- Swimmers who are currently eligible to represent and have Great Britain as their recognised country of international representation with World Aquatics (irrespective of where in the world they live and train), and;
- Foreign nationals who live and train in the United Kingdom for the majority of the calendar year in a British swimming club/programme.
No exceptions will be made - any athlete who does not sit within one of these categories will not receive an invite to compete.
Entries will only be accepted from competitors registered as members of a British Swimming Home Nation - Swim England, Scottish Swimming or Swim Wales.
CHANGES TO THE FORMAT
Following an extensive consultation process with coaches, which included an online survey, coupled with meetings with key Home Nations staff, we are pleased to announce that this year will see a further revision to the Championships, with the below format points:
- Women's age groups: 13/14 years, 15 years, 16 years, 17 years and 18+ years
- Men's age groups: 14/15 years, 16 years, 17 years, 18 years and 19+ years
- No 50m form strokes for 13/14 girls and 14/15 boys
- Medal presentations will take place in the finals sessions
A full explanation of the rationale behind these format changes for 2023 can be viewed here
HOME NATION MEET CHOICE
Swimmers can choose to be entered into a Home Nation Summer Meet in two ways:
1. Country of their ranked club (first claim club in Scotland)
2. Country of international representation
Swimmers should note, however, that when identifying qualifiers for the Home Nations meets, the automated system in place assumes athletes wish to be categorised by the country of their ranked club.
There is no direct relation to any decisions you made to attend any of the Home Nation Winter Meets of December 2022 or any previous summer meet decisions.
Swimmers wishing to be entered into a Home Nation Summer Meet based on international representation MUST complete the following form: https://forms.gle/KUQsRdgZ4SiYzuKW6 or email HNMeetChoice@swimming.org with the following information:
- Date of birth
- Membership number
- Current ranked club
- Registered country of international representation
- Clear declaration that they wish to be selected by country of international representation for the 2023 Home Nation Meets
Information must be received no later than 5pm on 14th April 2023. There will be no exceptions and no changes will be made after this time.
INTERIM RANKINGS LISTS
This year, weekly rankings lists will be published on a twice weekly basis (Tuesday and Friday) once the qualifying window opens. A final draft rankings list will be produced on 29th May 2023, following the closing of the window. If it is believed that any of the data contained in the interim lists is incorrect or there are missing results, please report it by emailing email@example.com
A dual approach to opting out will continue to be taken. The idea behind the opt-out is to ensure that as many of the available places at the British Summer Championships are filled, with no empty spaces in events. Swimmers not wishing to compete in events are requested to withdraw, to ensure other swimmers can be invited to the British Summer Championships and the respective Home Nation Summer Meets.
We will also be sending out automated reminder emails during the window to encourage you to indicate your summer decision.
If swimmers wish to opt out of the initial invite list, please complete the following form via the link here https://forms.gle/JdmpSr9wLgt86xaS9 by midday on 15th May 2023. If you have any questions, please email HNMeetChoice@swimming.org
The initial invite list for the British Summer Championships will be created on 31st May 2023 and invitations issued thereafter.
There will be a window of 12 days for swimmers to accept their initial invites to compete at the British Summer Championships. If, by 5pm on 12th June 2023, swimmers have not entered the event, invites will be passed down to the next highly-ranked swimmer to fill the place.
Following the completion of the process above, new invites will be sent out to fill any remaining places. At this point, the invite lists for the Home Nation competitions will be finalised and published.
CONTACT EMAIL ADDRESS REMINDERS
To ensure that your invitation arrives, can you please ensure your email address is up to date through your Home Nation online membership system.Further reminders of key dates and milestones will be posted in due course. Further information on the 2023 British Summer Championships will be communicated in due course on the British Swimming website, including on the dedicated event page here.
Find out more about the Scottish Swimming Summer Meet here
Find out more about the Swim Wales Summer Open here
Find out more about the Swim England Summer Meet here