By David Meisel
With this week's announcement that the 2020 (2021) US Olympic Team Trials will be split into two events – Wave I – June 4-7 and Wave II from June 13-13 to June 20, 2021 …. What is with the fans? So far none of my swimming friends have said anything about tickets, travel, etc.
USA swimming press release
The update for "ticket" information (see image below) does not even "open" for further information.
USA Quick Links section on trial website
I understand that there is a lot to consider and the athletes should come first, relatives, friends and fans should be able to make plans. Will they be able to go Can you get a refund for your tickets? Can the money be donated for “Learn to Swim Programs”?
Floats are generally quite flexible people. We drive early in the morning and wait hours so we can see our child or others drive a race that lasts less than 25 seconds. If that's not flexible (or insane) I'm not sure what it is really like to be flexible about.
But let's face it, tickets aren't cheap, Omaha's hotels cost five times the cost of the event (the trial period) than they usually are, and rental cars or other forms of transportation also follow the same expensive pattern.
I'm very confused about how the planning committee for such an exciting event has a link for "Ticket Information Updated Soon" on January 26th (when tickets originally went on sale 12 months before the original test sales began) to show us calm down, give you a sense of calmness, or something other than leaving us a bit frustrated. We (those who huddled together during Covid so our swimmers wouldn't pass the virus on to others – coaches, swimmers, Olympic hopefuls) need something to look forward to! We need something that we can rely on. We need to know that June in Omaha is a possibility that Omaha will be Covid free, that Century Center is ventilated enough that we can sit next to each other cheering on America's fastest swimmers. that we can enjoy a week that we haven't had in more than 4 years !! For those who have been to Omaha for the exams, you too know how special the experience is – Omaha may be the place, but it's about what happens every day and especially at night at Century Center.
During the day there are preliminary rounds with heat after heat of swimmers who have made the "Olympic Trials Cut". Heat for heat of a hopeful, from 14+ to 30 ++ ++, who is fighting for the chance to make it back to the semi-finals and then to the final. Only 1 or 2 people drive to Tokyo for each event, and the Tokyo road has NO guarantees.
The nightly celebrations are saved for semifinals and finals. Lightshow, great announcement, and energy you might only get at a Caps Stanley Cup Final. Swimming fans venture into Omaha for this very special event.
The question remains … what about my tickets? Omaha 2021 for spectators?