What is ‘Champs’ / The Championship?

Each week following the regular program there is a competitive event for children in age groups 6-11. These events are optional. Each child who participates scores a point to acknowledge the effort made to participate in these races. The top 15 place-getters in each race also score additional points. The points are tallied each week and, at the season end, prizes are awarded for the top scoring children.

The events are designed to use the skills developed during the normal program and rotate through different skills e.g. swim, run etc. The goal of these races is to extend children beyond what can be offered in the general program sessions. It also helps prepare them for future races such as the Balmoral Swim for Cancer and gives them the experience of competing in a larger group.

How can my child join in?

Your child must participate fully in that day’s Nippers program then register in person for the champs. The registration is at the age signs near the tent and commences at 10am. Your child’s cap number will be taken by the marshall at the age flag.

What does my child need?

Your child needs goggles for the events with swimming (see the timetable). There may be a wait before your child’s race, so a towel or jumper may be useful to keep warm, plus extra sunscreen. This year all children must wear their pink rash vests. No vest, no race. This is an essential safety requirement.

Why does my child compete against other age/gender  children?

The qualifying times for young children for the NSW state swimming finals and the Little Athletics Events are virtually identical for boys and girls. And, historically, the gender split in end-of-season results has been equitable. The three younger age groups (6’s, 8’s and 10’s) do have a challenge and can be encouraged to think of this season as a “practice” before the next season when they are the older kids. Although it should be noted that some top ten place-getters always come from these age groups and in some years come first! Kudos to them! Plus we only have one hour to complete our events each week. Note - the beach run events are scored separately by gender. 

Can I help my child?

All children may have a shadowing parent/guardian in the water with them. In fact if your child is not confident in the water we encourage it! We do ask that all adults let the faster independent children past. Also children who are physically assisted in the water are not eligible for place-getter points.

All parents/carers may also be asked to help with judging and lining the course to ensure event fairness and the safety of all competitors. Plus assist in cheering on all the competitors, from the talented front of field to the bravely competing junior racers.

How are races scored?

Each participant receives 1 point for entering the event.

Then the first place-getter gets 15 points, (i.e. 16 points total) then second gets 14 (15 in total). Until the 15th past the finish who gets a total of 2 points. The results are tallied weekly by combined age groups: Juniors (6’s and 7’s), Intermediate’s (8’s and 9’s) and Senior’s (10’s and 11’s).

The exception to this is Flags where the scoring is different (see below).

What if I/my child thinks the results are not fair?

Please remember these events are designed for kids to develop skills including the challenging one of winning and losing. All our judges/marshalls are volunteers who are endeavouring to make races as fair as possible. If you have an issue, especially if safety is a concern, please speak to a green crew member as soon as possible after the event is completed. In most situations, the on-course judge’s decision is final. Disqualifications or score adjustments may occur following interfering with other competitors or breaches of event rules.

Who gets championship awards at the end of season?

The top three place getters for each gender in each combined age group receive trophies, and the other children who finish in the overall top 15 receive medals.

In the event of a tie in the points at the end of the season, we take the top 15 individuals, unless the tie is for fifteenth in which case we take all individuals in 15th place.

What happened to the Ironkids?

This season the scoring for the Ironkids events will remain as part of the overall season total and no additional prizes will be given.

Flag scoring? Wow, that seems complicated!

Yes it is – and we have spent a lot of time to make it fair. Essentially the more rounds a child participates in the higher their score will be. Which is why after the preliminary rounds the cap numbers of children are taken as they exit the event.

  • Because of the number of participants and the time constraints of running the flag races in the Championship, we split boys and girls in each combined age category until we have the last 15 of each for a given age category.  Points are then awarded for how far through the flags you get.
  • As an example, we might have 20 girls in the 8/9s.  They would compete for 15 flags.  The five who miss out get a participation point each.  
  • We then have 15 girls competing for 10 flags.  The five girls who miss out all get an additional 2 points for placing (score 3).  
  • The next 10 girls then race for 5 flags with the girls who miss out getting a further 2 additional points (score 5)
  • The remaining 5 girls compete against the final 5 boys (who have gone through the same elimination process) for 7 flags.  The 3 participants who miss out get two additional 2 points each (Score 7).
  • The final seven race for 5 flags.  The two who miss out get an additional 2 points (Score 9).
  • The final five race for 3 flags.  The two who miss out get an additional 2 points each (Score 11).
  • The final three race for one flag.  The two who miss out get an additional 3 points each (Score 14) and the winner gets an additional 5 points (Score 16).

Where is the scoring table

You'll find it here