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ERC Club March Meeting Featuring Madeline Bost and Dave Siconolfi by Mark Frankel

If you’re interested in participating in the USATF Grand Prix, whether on an ERC team, or as an individual, or both, Madeline Bost of USATF-NJ and Dave Siconolfi of Compuscore, explained how they work.  Siconolfi also discussed of how races are timed.

If you want to run for the ERC, then you must be a member of USATF, according to Bost.   Besides being able to run on teams, USATF membership will allow runners to apply a two-dollar discount on all sanctioned races.  However, the LDR (Long-Distance Running) committee of USATF-NJ is expanding the discount.

“It’s not just two-dollars anymore,” Bost said.

All clubs will have chances to enter teams in four divisions: open men, open women, masters men, and masters women.  Teams will be allocated points, starting at 12 for the winning team, up from 10 for the previous year, so as to include more teams, Bost said

Open men’s teams must have five runners, and open women’s teams must have four.  On the master’s level, men’s 40-49 and 50-59 teams also need five runners, although teams over 60 need three.  All master women only need three.

Then Siconolfi discussed the individual Grand Prix.

The overall Grand Prix consists of nine races.  Each runner must run three races ,up to two championships and one non-championship, in each category, with the best ones being counted.  However, there are also Mini Grand Prix series for both Categories One and Two.

Category one consists of races between three kilometers and four miles; category two is over four miles and under 15 kilometers; and category three is 15 kilometers and above..

Siconolfi asked that each runner pre-register, though, so as to avoid getting results lost.  On race day people are in a race to type in names, he explained, which leads to typos.

His firm, Compuscore, is the largest scoring agency in New Jersey.   He started the firm in the early eighties, after working with Dean Shonts of the Sneaker Factory to score his two-mile races.  The first race Compuscore scored was the President’s Cup, which he still does.

Most races are scored by chips, he said, which allows for net-times.  The net-time is the time between when the runner crosses the starting line and the finish line, whereas the gun- time is the time between when the race starts and when the runner crosses the finish.

All official scoring is done by gun-time and not net-time, which includes all Grand Prix races, according to Siconolfi.  He also said that net-times cannot be used for age-group records, unless the runner also wins their age-group.

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