INTERNATIONAL MASTERS SWIMMING HALL OF FAME
BURWELL "BUMPY" JONES (USA)
2005 Masters Swimmer
INTERNATIONAL HIGHLIGHTS: World Points – 640, Pre-1986 Points – 342, Total
Points – 982; Since 1972, he has competed in eight age groups (35-39 thru
70-74); 39 FINA MASTERS WORLD RECORDS;
the age of five, a young Bumpy Jones started swim racing, embarking on an
illustrious career that would span over 70 years, setting world records as a
collegiate swimmer and again years later as a Masters swimmer.
Bumpy has taken part in many swimming firsts. He competed in the first Pan
American Games in 1951 winning gold and bronze medals, was the first world
record holder in the 400 individual medley when a fourth butterfly stroke was
added, and competed during the first year of Masters swimming in the United
States in 1971.
in Detroit in 1933, Bumpy chose swimming over other sports and music. At age 12,
he enrolled at Matt Mann’s swimming camp, Chikopi, located in Ontario, Canada,
where over the next several summer seasons he rose from camper to counselor.
This began a lifetime coaching relationship with Matt that developed while he
swam for Redford High School and continued into college at the
of Michigan. While attending Redford, he would sometimes drive from
to Ann Arbor to swim with the many Michigan All Americans coached by Matt.
Bumpy was a high school and college All-American and a three time NCAA champion
at the University of Michigan. He was a member of the 1952 Olympic gold medal
winning 4x200 meter freestyle relay swimming in the preliminary heats. He
competed on U.S. teams in Bermuda, Japan, and England. He set three world
records in the 400 individual medley. In 1954, Jones was elected captain of
Michigan’s Swim Team and was a Sullivan Award nominee. During these years, he
swam part time under other Hall of Fame coaches including Bob Kiphuth at Yale,
Soichi Sakamoto at Hawaii, Mike Peppe at Ohio State and Gus Stager at Michigan.
1959, Bumpy graduated from the University of Michigan Medical School and then
interned in Ann Arbor for one year. In the summer of 1960, after a five year
retirement from swimming, he spent one month training for the Olympic Trials in
Detroit. His time in the 200 meter freestyle greatly improved from 1952, but the
best swimmers in the country were also much faster. After failing to make the
finals, he retired from swimming again and spent his next years in residency at
the University of Virginia, in the Air Force, and finally at
University. It was during this time that he became an accomplished golfer,
winning 28 state and local tournaments.
1965, Bumpy moved to
where he began and continues his private practice in Dermatology.
Masters swimming began in 1971, it was thought to be a get-together party for
former swimmers. But that soon changed from not only being a fun gathering, but
also a highly competitive challenge too. During his Masters career, which began
at age 38, Bumpy has won 110 National Masters Championships, 5 FINA Masters
World Championships,7 Canadian and 22 YMCA championships. He has set 39 FINA
Masters World Records and 145 Masters National Records. During his Masters
career he has 38 number one, 18 number two and 10 number three Masters world
rankings. His Masters times nearly equaled his best collegiate times. His
competition has always been tough and the camaraderie has been at its best.