Beside League Galas where swimmers compete as teams there are a number of competitions throughout the year where swimmers swim as individuals in their desired stroke(s). There is a national programme of competitions promoted by The ASA and British Swimming whereby swimmers may compete at local County level, Regional level and National level, subject to meeting the qualifying entry times and conditions. These competitions are organised into two championships based on age (although they may be run in the same competition):
- Age Groups – 10-14 year old
- Youth – 15+ year old
For Leicestershire swimmers the competitions are:
- Leicestershire Age Groups and County Championships (Known colloquially as “Counties”, “LASAs”, “Age Groups” or “LasaCats”.)
- Midland Youth & Age Groups Championship (Known as “Midlands” or “Regionals”.)
- ASA National Championships (Known as “Nationals”.)
The Leicestershire Age Groups and County Championships, organised by Leicestershire Amateur Swimming Association (LASA), is one of the key competitions in the Leicestershire swimming calendar. The Championships are run over three weekends in February and March; dates vary depending on when Easter falls. Club training is geared to developing swimmers in preparation for these Championships and all eligible swimmers (based on qualifying times) are encouraged to enter.
The Age Group Championship is based on LASACaTs (FINA points) as defined in the Licence and Conditions of Entry.
LASA AGE GROUPS
The LASA Age Groups give swimmers an idea of where they stand in relation to other swimmers of their own age group in the county.
Application forms to swim in the LASA Age Groups can be downloaded from this site (see specific year links above) or obtained from your club. To enter, swimmers need to qualify by having swum the event being entered within the period leading up to the competition as determined by LASA. From 2014 all times will be taken directly from British Rankings although you will still need to select the events you wish to enter. This is why your Club Championships need to be licensed.
The age group in which the swimmer is placed is based on their age as on 31st December of that year of competition.
Events are swum at 50m Venues, such as Loughborough Universtity, and at 25m venues such as Hinckley LC & Braunstone LC. The Schedule of Events published each year will specify which events are at which venues.
Particularly for the under 15 year olds, the aim of each swimmer should be to enter enough events of the various strokes and distances so that the best from each category is counted towards their final LASACaT points tally. This will then be a good indicator as to their ranking within the county. The number of events that a swimmer can enter is dependent on their age; the younger swimmers may not able to enter the 100m events for example. It is clear from the Qualification Times and/or Application form which events can/cannot be entered.
Remember when selecting swims bear in mind the LASACaT Categories; don’t rely on entering a single event per category as illness or a DQ, for example, may result in no points at all. Also remember, if entering multiple events in a category, the best score is used for the overall LASACaT total.
Medals are awarded to the top 3 in each HDW event. A trophy is awarded at the end of the last day to the swimmers who have gained the most LASACaT points in each junior age group. The top 10 receive trophies.