ARRS - Association of Road Racing Statisticians

Rules for record-keeping


1.1 - A track event is a race taking place on a circuit specifically built for athletic competition.

1.2 - A road event is any footrace conducted on course not specifically designed for athletic competition which can be accurately measured using a calibrated bicycle.

1.3 - An indoor track event is a track event that is on a circuit not exceeding 220 yards and is completely under cover.

1.4 - A handler is an individual who provides personal support of any kind to individual competitors or particular teams. The term includes team manager, coach, and masseur, as well as friends and families looking after food, drinks, clothing, and providing other permitted assistance at official aid stations.

1.5 - A record is a statement that a specific runner has run at least the stated distance in not more than the stated time. A record should also surpass any prior mark that has been ratified or is pending ratification. A record must also meet the criteria set forth in these rules.

1.6 - Automatic timing is the use of a timing device that starts automatically without human intervention as the race starts, and which employs a photographic record of the runner crossing the finish line. Manual timing is defined as any timing that is not automatic.

1.7 - A timing device is mechanism specifically designed for timing sporting events. This includes wrist watches equipped with a stop timing function, printing timers, chip timing systems, and similar devices. This does not include internal clocks in computer which are deemed not to be sufficiently accurate.

1.8 - Lap sheets on which cumulative times for each completed lap are recorded are the only definitive proof that the record claimant completed the stated distance on a multi-loop course or track. Lap sheets may be recorded manually or electronically.

1.9 - A certified course is one that has been measured using a calibrated bicycle or steel-tape and the measurement details have been approved upon review by an officially designated expert.

1.10 - A validation consists of an examination of length of the course and the conduct of the race to insure that all pertinent requirements are met. For road races, this includes a check of the calibration course and a single measurement of the entire course. The validation measurement must demonstrate that the course was at least the stated distance and that the race followed the course as certified.

1.11 - Improper aid or assistance is addressed in sections 3.1.1 and 3.1.6.



2.1 - The English version of these rules and recommendations must be used in cases of dispute or doubt.

2.2 - In the following rules and recommendations the following words are used only in the senses stated as follows:

"is" = a fact;
"must" = an obligatory requirement;
"forbidden" = negative obligatory requirement;
"should" = desirable requirement (failure to abide may cause a record application to be denied);
"may" = a possibility to consider.

2.3 - Where the male gender form is used, the rule applies equally to the female gender.



Races at which records may have been set must adhere to the rules set forth in this manual (and any other requirements as required by the local authorities).

3.1 - General

3.1.1 - Competition

a) A race must be held in fair (bona fide) competition: i) It is forbidden for any competitor to receive an advantage over any other competitor; ii) The race must be advertised in advance; iii) Entry to the event should be open to all eligible, qualified competitors (entry restrictions may be by qualifying performance, nationality, and or age/sex, clearly stated beforehand); iv) All competitors of the same gender must start at the same time in a fair start.
b) Women's records must be set in women-only competition. This includes races that provide an early start for the elite women, provided that at no point during the race are any men runners within 50 meters of the woman record-claimant.
c) Women and men may compete together in races but such marks achieved by women shall not be considered for record status but rather will be considered as noteworthy performances.
d) It is forbidden for a non-competitor to pace a record claimant. This includes pacing by: i) A runner not officially entered in the competition; ii) A runner entered in the competition who does not start; iii) A runner who runs non-competitively in order to pace the record claimant; iv) A runner who has retired from the competition.

3.1.2 - Recording

a) In every track or road multi-loop event, a set of lap times must be produced for the record claimant. The cumulative time (hours, minutes and seconds) for each completed lap should be taken and recorded on the lap sheet immediately following the completion of each lap. Any missed lap times must be accompanied by factual evidence that the missed lap was actually completed in order for that lap to be counted. A lap recording sheet should incorporate the following: i) Cumulative distance covered for each successive lap; ii) Cumulative elapsed times for each completed lap; iii) Successive lap split times; iv) Comment column for notes, e.g. walking, eating, times of departure and return to track etc.
b) Times for the record claimant must be recorded at any and all turnaround points.
c) Documentation that the record claimant covered the stated distance shall include lap sheets for multiple loop courses and intermediate split times for all other types of courses. Intermediate split times should be frequent enough to verify that the record claimant covered the entire distance.

3.1.3 - Information required for the record application. Note: Much of this information can be provided on the record claim form.

a) Time/distance of the performance claimed as a record.
b) Name and nationality of the record claimant.
c) All stopped times taken for the performance claimed, signed by the time-keepers.
d) Documentation certifying the length of the course.
e) Signed statement that the race was run on the course as certified and that the record claimant covered the entire stated distance.
f) Signed statement that the record claimant has undergone tests for illegal substances within 3 days of the competition.
g) The set of lap sheets taken for the record claimant (if applicable).
h) Documentation on any partial lap measurements (if applicable).
i) The entry form for the event included the event title, date, and venue.
j) Photocopy of the advertisement for the race with details of where and when the advertisement appeared.
k) Videotape of the race showing the record claimant, if available.
l) Validation request or validation documentation.

3.1.4 - Distance measurement

a) Road course measurement must adhere to the requirements for certification and the measurement data must be submitted for certification by the pertinent IAAF regional measurement coordinator. The length of tracks must be documented with a certificate from the builder of the track, a certificate from the national governing for that track, or be measured by steel tape using the prescribed method on the inside edge of the inside lane. The length of outdoor tracks must be at least 300 meters and must not be longer than 500 meters. The length of an indoor track must not be longer than 220 yards. Track races must be held on a track with either a raised border or with cones, flags, or posts with connecting rope or wire which may serve as such a border.
b) The measurement of any partial laps needed to complete intermediate distances on the track, not finishing at the start/finish line, should be measured by steel tape on the inside edge of the inside lane. Sections of partial laps measured on a curve should note the length of the arc in degrees (a full turn is 180 degrees). The length of the arc may be obtained by dividing the curb measured distance from the start of the curve by the total curb measured length of the curve and multiplying by 180 degrees (for normal two curve track layouts).
c) For time limit races, the exact finishing point of each competitor is the heel of the rear foot. The partial lap distance must be measured by steel tape. Measurements must be taken down to the next full centimeter. For road loops, it is acceptable to have reference marks at known distances on the loop, provided these reference marks have also been measured, marked, and certified.
d) For intermediate time limit records, partial lap distance should be measured as specified in 3.1.4b, otherwise, the distance must be recorded as the distance of the last completed lap prior to the end of that time period.

3.1.5 - Timing

a) There should be at least three timekeepers, one of whom should be designated as the Chief Timekeeper. Timing devices of those types noted as acceptable in section 1.7 must be used.
b) Three stopped times should be taken for record purposes, although two are sometimes acceptable. Times taken from running timers/watches are not acceptable (stopped times taken from timers/watches using the lap split function are acceptable). A performance cannot be accepted as a record with only one stopped time.
c) All times must be recorded to the indicated 1/100 second or the highest precision afforded by the particular timing device being used.

3.1.6 - Support and Handlers

a) Assistance by handlers must be limited to handling zones that in the aggregate (total) are not longer than 3% of distance of the course or 3% of the distance of the loop for a multiple loop course. Physical aids to competitors' forward movement (pushing, support) are forbidden. Such physical assistance is only permitted when the runner's medical condition warrants concern.
b) Pacing, by handlers or others, is forbidden. Refer also to 3.1.1 d).
c) Wind shielding is forbidden. This occurs when a vehicle is driven or ridden in front or alongside the competitor close to the speed he/she is running. No vehicle, motorized or otherwise, traveling at or near the speed of the lead runners, is permitted within ten meters in front of the lead runners or within two meters to the side of the lead runners at any time during the race.



4.1 - Courses. A record quality course is defined as having not more than 1 m/km net drop between the start and finish and not more than 30% of the race distance separation between that start and finish, e.g. not more than a 3 km separation for a 10 km race. Records will only be accepted for record quality courses.

4.2 - Road Record Distances. 5, 8, 10, 12, 15, 20, 25, 30, 50, 100, and 200 kilometers, 10, 30, 50, 100, and 1000 miles, half marathon, marathon, 6, 12, 24, and 48 hours, and six days.

4.3 - Track Record Distances. 15,000, 20,000, 25,000, 30,000, 50,000, 100,000, 150,000, and 200,000 meters, 10, 30, 40, 50, 100, and 1000 miles, 1, 2, 6, 12, 24, and 48 hours, and six days.