Para swimming will be getting a new World Series circuit which will allow the best para swimmers to have a dedicated series. World Para Swimming announced the World Series on Wednesday which will get underway in March.
It is the first time that para swimmers will have their very own circuit of events, previously they have had to compete in events with able bodied swimmers. The series begins in Copenhagen before events in Sao Paulo, Sheffield, Indianapolis and Berlin with the final event in Berlin.
The plan for the World Series is to lead to athletes being ready for the world and regional championships coming up in a few years. This will allow the elite athletes but also those just shy of the top echelon to compete in a major series.
On the schedule for Para Swimming the next major event is the World Championships in Mexico City in coming years. This series will allow athletes to be fully prepared for major events and could well see the standards across the board increase.
Another significant benefit of the World Series would be the ability for National Paralympic Committees to get a regular system operating. The World Series will all be operated under one set of rules, which will allow those committees to get their swimmers used to the format that will be the same at the Paralympic Games.
This will also allow officials an opportunity to get development as they will have an opportunity to try more roles and do more work. The intent of that is to create a deeper pool of technical officials with the best being taken to serve at major world events.
The World Series will also allow World Para Swimming to gain more insight in to classifications, and after the scandal of mis-clasification last year that will no doubt boost things. It will allow for research in to classification and seeing if the current classifications are adequate and being properly tested for.