Solo marathon swim DQs

evmoevmo Admin
edited April 2013 in General Discussion
To my knowledge, there has never been a disqualification for a rules violation in the history of SBCSA-sanctioned Santa Barbara Channel swims (53 solo successes).

It is my (unofficial) understanding that there has never been a DQ in the history of CCSF-sanctioned Catalina Channel swims (283 solo successes).

According to NYC Swim's public database, there has been one DQ in the modern history of MIMS, starting 1982 (923 solos, including DNFs, DNSs, and withdrawals). I believe the one DQ was for an illegal pace swimmer.

What about the English Channel? Anybody know?

Rottnest? Gibraltar?
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Comments

  • paulmpaulm Member
    Evan I seem to recall a DQ in 2010 in MIMs - (Please check ). I believe one of the support crew of a swimmer jumped off the top of the support vessell into the water in the Hudson somewhere close to the GW Bridge (and the swimmer was automtically DQ ?? )They were behind us by do recall hearing something about it on the event 2 way .
  • Paul, the one MIMS DQ I referred to above was in 2010, so it probably corresponds to what you describe. Thanks for the additional details.
  • paulmpaulm Member
    Cheers Evan, I must admit when I heard the call on the radio- my heart when out to the swimmer who had swum so hard to get to the Hudson (on the LONG home strait ) Only to have their finish 'I believe' ruined by the stupidity of one of their support crew.
    I am sure someone from MIMS will qualify further. (again my apology if my info is in some way incorrect )
  • I was the observer on Amanda H's boat in the 2010 MIMS. Amanda had just passed a swimmer who was slowing in the Hudson. The next thing I saw was a well meaning, misinformed crew member jump in to help with her pace. We tried to wave him out, but it did not take long for MIMS officials to DQ the swimmer and order her out. I felt bad because it wasn't her idea. In fact I think she freaked when she saw her crew in the water. Officials ordered her out of the water, but she refused and (unofficially) finished.
  • NiekNiek Member
    I'm confused.
    @gregoc your the observer on Amanda's boat. You're there to see that the swim is by the rules. Right?
    The other swimmer had her own observer. Why didn't he/she do his/her job?
    If I read it correctly there was a third observer (the MIMS officials) who had to step in.
    What's the point of having an observer on a boat if they do nothing?
    http://openwaterswimming.eu - Cold, wind, waves, sunburn, currents, jellyfish and flotsam! Hop in and join the fun!
  • NiekNiek Member
    @evmo In the Channel you won't get DQ.
    It will simply change from a normal swim by Channel rules to an assisted swim.
    http://openwaterswimming.eu - Cold, wind, waves, sunburn, currents, jellyfish and flotsam! Hop in and join the fun!
  • @Niek, I was there to observe Amanda's swim and make sure she did it by the rules (and she did). I can't speak for the observer who was on the the boat that had the swimmer DQed.
  • ZoeSadlerZoeSadler Member
    edited April 2013
    evmo said:

    What about the English Channel? Anybody know?

    They're not recorded as DQ's for the English Channel but the official observer records the swim as "Successful" or "Unsuccessful".

    Some reasons for an "unsuccessful" swim, other than not completing the swim could be:
    - relay team changing the order of the swimmers
    - relay team members changing over before the hour is complete
    - putting on a wetsuit or fins during a swim
    - grabbing hold of the escort boat
    etc
  • evmoevmo Admin
    edited April 2013
    Well, I suppose when a swimmer abandons a swim and gets on the boat, that is a form of "DQ" -- a Self-DQ. Same with putting on a wetsuit in the middle of the channel.

    I guess I was wondering about the frequency of the other type of DQ - when the swimmer breaks a rule without intending to self-DQ, and the observer DQs the swimmer. Like the MIMS example above.
    Niek said:

    In the Channel you won't get DQ. It will simply change from a normal swim by Channel rules to an assisted swim.

    This raises another interesting issue. In the English Channel, apparently, swimmers are allowed to "change the rules" in the middle of a swim. Is this ever a source of annoyance for an observer?

    In the Santa Barbara Channel (and, I think, the Catalina Channel), if a swimmer DQs, the swim is over, and the swimmer must exit the water.
  • ChickenOSeaChickenOSea Charter Member
    I think there was a problem with the two-person relay that was also swimming nearby? Not sure if it was a DQ or something else.... I think they finished around the same time as me...of course there was another unscheduled entrant in the Hudson around the same time, too...:(
  • The unscheduled entrant was DQed when they pulled him onto the rescue/recovery boat.
  • gregoc said:

    The unscheduled entrant was DQed when they pulled him onto the rescue/recovery boat.

    D'oh!
  • ChickenOSeaChickenOSea Charter Member
    I suppose Lance has been DQ'd, in advance....
  • dc_in_sfdc_in_sf Member
    edited April 2013
    evmo said:

    Rottnest? Gibraltar?

    Note that the Rottnest bylaws are basically copied from the CCSF rules, neither have a "must get out" clause as stipulated by the SBCSA rules (and the SBCSA rules don't preclude getting back in after the swim is called off).

    The only "must get out" stipulation that I know of for Rottnest is for a swimmer or team that doesn't make the cutoff times on the race day, but for a non race day crossing I don't think there is any such requirement.
    http://notdrowningswimming.com - open water adventures of a very ordinary swimmer
  • jcmalickjcmalick Charter Member
    Rachel G. was the disqualifed swimmer in 2010 for having a Pace Swimmer (Cristian V. who is reknowned in our community as an open water swimmer, Race Director, and Chair of CIBBOWS). According to Rach, she had asked Cristian to pace her as she was entering the Hudson fully knowing that her decision and action would probably put her in "Hot Water". When the call came over the radio to have her pulled with a fast 10 miles remaining, Cristian confronted her and advised her that she was DQed. She was disheartened but was not going to throw in the towel because of a "stupid" move. Cristian reboarded the boat, and it was Rachel's decision to finish the race despite being disqualified. As the Observer (the cat is out of the bag) I along with the Boat Captain and kayaker(s) allowed her to finish and we all had a talk with the Race Director afterwards. Above all else, it was a moral decision to finish and although Rachel does not participate in NYC Swims anymore, she can at least say that she swam around Manhattan. To this day, I have given up my "observing" and have since switched to being closer to the swimmer on the water as a paddler as I feel this is a better opportunity to give back to our community. (the jumper from the GWB and the helicopter searching the scene, was a running joke at the time that the pacer was the jumper).
  • evmoevmo Admin
    edited April 2013
    dc_in_sf said:

    SBCSA rules don't preclude getting back in after the swim is called off.

    Thank you for alerting me to this loophole! It will be closed forthwith :)
  • paulmpaulm Member
    edited April 2013
    dc_in_sf said:

    The only "must get out" stipulation that I know of for Rottnest is for a swimmer or team that doesn't make the cutoff times on the race day, but for a non race day crossing I don't think there is any such requirement.

    MIMS have similar cut off rules in place.....................

    Race Rule I: Race Course - MIMS 2013

    A.Time Limitations
    The following cutoffs at designated locations throughout the course will be strictly adhered to unless the Race Director determines that conditions warrant an extended time limit. You agree, in accepting the waiver, to be pulled from the race if you do not make these cut-off times:

    Triborough Bridge: 3 hours 30 minutes
    Spuyten Duyvil: 5 hours 45 minutes
    79th Street Boat Basin: 7 hours 30 minutes
    Pier 26: 9 hours 10 minutes

  • dc_in_sfdc_in_sf Member
    edited April 2013
    evmo said:

    dc_in_sf said:

    SBCSA rules don't preclude getting back in after the swim is called off.

    Thank you for alerting me to this loophole! It will be closed forthwith :)
    I'm kind of curious on this.

    It seems to me that once a swimmer is DQ'd there a bunch of very valid reasons to absolutely pull the swimmer from the water and not let them back in, but if none of those apply, then could not the swim be converted into a training swim?

    Off the top of my head the main reasons to pull the swimmer would be:

    1. Swimmer safety (e.g. hypothermia, injury, failure to follow instructions)

    2. It's an observed swim and the observer is not ok with hanging out while the swimmer trains (e.g. as I would suspect would happen if the swimmer is DQ'd for deliberately flouting the rules).

    3. It's a race - Race directors have enough going on without having to deal with rogue swimmers and it would not be fair on the other competitors who might view the swimmer as still being legitimate.

    4. The permission to swim is contingent on the swim being a legitimate attempt and said permission is revoked once the swimmer is DQ'd.

    But if none of those apply, it seems that there is an opportunity for the swimmer to gain valuable experience and not possibly not completely waste the investment in boat fees and travel expenses.

    I could imagine that a warm water swimmer who was doing a particular swim with the intention of using it as an EC qualifying swim might want to continue the swim to reach the six hour threshold for example, even if it is determined that they are DQ'd from the actual swim they are attempting (obviously the reason for the DQ would have to be something that would not DQ them from a qualifying swim e.g. through non compliant use of pace swimmers, not making a particular cutoff time etcetera).

    These are clearly edge cases and possibly not worth cluttering the blessedly simple by laws that most channel swimming organizations seem to have, but figured I'd throw it up there for discussion :-)
    http://notdrowningswimming.com - open water adventures of a very ordinary swimmer
  • evmoevmo Admin
    edited April 2013
    @dc_in_sf: FWIW, points #1, #2, and #4 have all been relevant in SBCSA discussions of this issue. Happy to read some debate/discussion on this topic, both out of personal curiosity and to provide a better service to future SBCSA swimmers.
  • oxooxo New Member
    edited April 2013
    'Mandatory pull + no re-entry' reduces the range of possible interpretations of "I swam it."
  • oxo said:

    'Mandatory pull + no re-entry' reduces the range of possible interpretations of "I swam it."

    It definitely solves the Brittany King scenario, unfortunate that poor reporting should drive rule choices though.
    http://notdrowningswimming.com - open water adventures of a very ordinary swimmer
  • oxooxo New Member
    edited April 2013
    It kind of obviates it, and kind of doesn't. It certainly moves it in that direction.

    The number of swimmers who want 'a registered swim or nothing at all' is likely to be much, much smaller than the number of swimmers who want 'a swim that fits their personal goals'. That is, the more constraining the regulations, the smaller the ratio of adopters to non-adopters.

    I would not expect the relation between constraints and adopter ratio to be monotonic in detail, but I would expect more->smaller to be grossly accurate. At a certain point, then, the degree of constraint will leave unserved a market so large that it will be viable to create new associations alternate viewpoints. The growth of common-man OW by itself may have already crossed that threshold. If not, a 'mandatory pull + no re-entry' policy may (or may not) carry it across.

    The extreme statement for solo OW would be:

    "Rules are made and enforced by people who want to make your swim their swim."

    There are of course many other perspectives on 'rules', some with a positive spin. Here is another one:

    "Rules are endorsed by people who are not satisfied with their swims. That is, their satisfaction rises out of comparison with other people's swims."

    An alternate approach to rules would be to reward/acknowledge in proportion to effort. If I remember correctly, months ago someone else on this board posted a variation on this idea. I suspect that in the end, effort-based SAs will dominate because rule-based SAs are binary and exclusionary by design, where as effort-based SAs are graded and all-inclusive by design.
  • NiekNiek Member
    edited April 2013
    Nothing wrong with rules.

    swimmers who want 'a swim that fits their personal goals'.

    They can start their swim trying to abide by the rules and if they succeed they have accomplished a registered swim.
    If for some reason the rules are violated (not safety related!) they can proceed and finish their swim.
    Nothing wrong with that instead of starting with no rules.
    http://openwaterswimming.eu - Cold, wind, waves, sunburn, currents, jellyfish and flotsam! Hop in and join the fun!
  • oxooxo New Member
    edited April 2013

    Nothing wrong with rules.

    Rules have pros cons, both in general and in particular. I could list a number of cons pertinent to solo OW.
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