A New Year's Memo from USA Boxing Executive Director Anthony Bartkowski
Dear USA Boxing Membership:
Happy New Year, I hope all of you and your families enjoyed a happy and healthy holiday season. I realize that due to many of the events of last year, there is a great deal of speculation and rumors floating around regarding USA Boxing and our organization’s future. While we are still early in the process with the newly formed reform committee, I would like to put many of the concerns and rumors to rest.
I know you are looking to find out how the reform committee and potential changes to the organization will affect you and your local gym. There will be minimal, if any impact to you and your day-to-day operations at the local level. The changes that could be made are related to the composition of USA Boxing’s governance and Board of Directors as well as how things are handled at the national level.
However it is important to understand that it is business as usual for USA Boxing. We are currently planning all of our major national events, and our 15 and 16-year-old boxers are competing right now at the first-ever Junior World Team Open in Reno, Nev. We are sending athletes to upcoming international competitions over the next couple of months and training camps will take place as we forge ahead in developing our athletes.We are working to align our procedures and rules with AIBA to prepare our young boxers for what they will see at the next level. This includes the change to our age determination date. USA Boxing will no longer use August 1 as the age determination date for national events, but rather the athlete’s birth year. It will break down as follows going forward:
Junior (15‐16 years old): Athletes must be 15‐16 years old in the year of 2013 to compete in the Junior Division. This means they must be born in 1997‐1998 to be eligible. Athletes cannot turn 17 anytime during the year of 2013.
Youth (17‐18 years old): Athletes must be 17‐18 years old in the year of 2013 to compete in the Youth Division. This means they must be born in 1995‐1996 to be eligible. Athletes cannot turn 19 anytime during the year of 2013.
Elite (17‐34 years old): Athletes must be 17‐34 years old in the year of 2013 to compete in the Elite Division. This means they must be born in 1996‐1979 to be eligible. Athletes cannot turn 35 anytime during the year of 2013. However, this is more than likely to change with new rules from AIBA. Once the new rules are publicized, USA Boxing will adopt and follow.
The year of 2013 will be a transitional year, as some athletes may only have been able to compete in the Junior Olympic Tournament for one year. This also means that athletes who are 16 and turning 17 in 2013 will be eligible for the USA Boxing National Championships.
Another change that has been made to both help align with AIBA’s procedures as well as keep the draw more organized is the addition of a general weigh-in at USA Boxing National Events. The first general weigh-in was held on Monday morning at the Junior World Team Open. The tournament general weigh-in will now take place on the first day of competition prior to the event draw. Only athletes who make weight at the general weigh-in will be entered into the draw.
We are still awaiting word from AIBA on the final rule changes regarding age divisions, and will let the membership know as soon as possible as those changes will impact how we run our national events.
We know that all the turmoil of the last several months has been challenging, but we greatly appreciate everyone’s patience as we work through all of these issues. We will keep everyone posted regarding any changes to the organization. Please keep up all the great work across the country.