The handicap system is in place to give every swimmer an equal opportunity to win a race. They are based on your own average swim times and are calculated in seconds per 100 metres. These averages are based on the swim times we have for you and that you have done. It is the reason that you must have a minimum of 2 swims to receive a handicap .
Swimmer A has a time of 16 minutes 30 seconds over 1000 metres. That is 990 seconds over 1000 metres or an average of 99 seconds per 100 metres. This is the base for swimmer A’s handicap .
Swimmer B has a time of 20 minutes over the same 1000 metres. That is 1200 seconds over 1000 metres or an average of 120 seconds per 100 metres. This is the base for swimmer B’s handicap.
We then take the distance of the race e.g. 500 metres and multiply your average time by 5. The difference between swimmer A and B is then the handicap for the race or, if you like the head start that swimmer B will receive over swimmer A . This year we have 3 groups and each group will start all together and the handicaps will be applied to your actual swim time . Confused yet ??
Swimmer A 99 avg per 100m
Swimmer B 120 avg per 100m
The difference is 21 seconds per 100 metres. Over a 500 metre race the difference is 105 seconds ( 1 min 45 secs ) between Swimmer A and Swimmer B. The two swimmers start together. Swimmer A finishes the course in 8 mins 20 secs. Swimmer B finishes in 10 minutes. Actual times. The times are then adjusted. Swimmer B is the slowest in the group so 0 seconds are applied . Time 10mins . Swimmer A is the fastest in the group so their time has 105 seconds ( the difference or handicap ) added. So 8 mins 20 secs plus 105 secs ( 1min 45s ). Adjusted time is 10 mins 5 secs. Swimmer B has won the race by 5 seconds! Simple !!