Membership within the BCWA and participation at BCWA events has been steadily increasing over the past few years, which is excellent news. This is a testament to all the hard work put in by the coaches and volunteers with all of our clubs, and within the BCWA.
One of the effects of increased membership, is the number of athletes who qualify for the BCWA Provincial Championships. Participation has gone up from 37 athletes in 2012 to 72 athletes in 2014, and at this rate, we would have even more in 2015. Unfortunately, logistically it is extremely difficult to have a competition with so many athletes within a one day competition. Keeping in mind that the BCWA Provincial Championships are held to highlight the top athletes in BC, the BCWA reached out to the coaches to start a discussion on the best way to deal with this issue. From the response that we received, the consensus was that the best thing to do was to increase the qualifying standards for both men and women. Thus, starting with the 2015 BCWA Provincial Championships, the qualifying standards have been increased from "Provincial Level IV" to "Provincial Level III" for women, and from "Provincial Level III" to "Provincial Level II" for men. You can find the actual qualifying standards HERE
We will continue to monitor the level of participation and we may have to make further modifications in the future. Remember, this is a good thing! We have more athletes, and our athletes are of higher calibre. This will continue to push and motivate our athletes!
On a unrelated note, the BCWA also received a request to review the ranking system. Currently our ranking is based on the best result the athlete makes within a 12 month period. However, as the ranking is used in helping to select "Team BC" for the Canadian Junior Championships, and the Western Canadian Championships, it was suggested that the ranking period was too long and the system lacked the required information to help select the best team for these events. Although there is on going discussion on what form the rankings will take in the future, there was consensus that the ranking period was too long for the purpose that it is supposed to serve. As of the next update, the ranking will reflect an athlete's best result within a 9 month period. Please keep in mind that there is still an active discussion regarding the rankings and we may announce further changes in the future. Changes are also not limited to the time period. If you have any further questions or suggestions regarding the rankings, please share them with us.
Thanks again to the coaches, volunteers and athletes who continue to grow this great sport within our province. Keep training hard!
Walter Bailey - BCWA President