Doctor by day, speed skating referee by night

Posted at: 02/07/2014 11:33 AM
By: Stephen Bond

Within the confines of the 400 meter sheet of ice at Alder Arena stands three finely dressed officials. These officials oversee every aspect of a speed skating race, even down to ice conditions and when races will go off. And come four years, one of Rochester’s own will be fulfilling a life-long dream -- overseeing Olympic speed skating.

Tucked on East Avenue in Hilton sits the Hilton Veterinary Hospital where Doctor Tim Bostley specializes in ultrasounds for dogs. Bostley will see dozens of animals from the Rochester area every week but when the weekend comes, Bostley hangs up his stethoscope and lacing up his skates to referee speed skating.

Then his journey began with the Rochester speed skating club. Next stop for Bostley was a clinic in Milwaukee, “And it turned out that the officials that were hosting the clinic were referees that had refereed Cathy.”

Tim's exposure to elite speed skating comes from his marriage to Rochester native and two-time Olympic gold medalist Cathy turner. Bostley said, “It was very rewarding to have been through that experience with her. It's the Olympics. There's just no way to describe the feeling of having somebody close to you actually win.”

Ten years ago Tim became a level 1 speed skating referee and just last year he was raised to a level 5 -- the highest level a speed skating ref can be. “It's kind of what I've strived to get to. I mean I went into this as something as I would be able to do as I got older to stay in the sport.”

Bostley is doing more than surviving as a ref. Tim is a board member of U.S. speed skating, he's one of only two American level 2 refs and four years from now, Bostley has a realistic shot at refereeing the 2018 games. “I'm hoping that that will be my first chance to do the Olympics. That would be my way of going to the Olympics as not an athlete. So I always said I'd get there one way or another, it may not be as an athlete, but I'll take it as an official.”
Tim says he is the likely choice to represent America at the 2018 games in South Korea, given the only other American level 5 referee is currently overseeing the Sochi games.