Oh boy - I asked about this months ago. There should be some kind of standard - just like the USAPL and other major powerlifting meets. Let’s eliminate some of the fat!!! Let’s make people more serious about the preparation process etc.
no more random non athletes?
This is something I think Singapore is talking about - it would be interesting…
I think it’s a good idea to make standards associated with the Masters competitions.
Thoughts on the other part of the article?
The rest of the article is complete garbage - establishment and centralised control. Insane for a non professional environment.
In my experience of Masters only events (at regional level) is you have a great shortage of athletes already. Straight to finals, combine age groups etc. Further filtering is pointless, will be hardly anyone left. Cant speak for national/international level since I am not good enough.
Check out the national rankings for Masters age groups. I see great spread in times across athletes meaning that whatever you do the top 8 or so will outclass everyone else whatever.
Who is going to set the qualifying times - this is not a professional set up with paid administrators combing the world for the times/distances of all events at all age groups.
A possible compromise is qualifying rounds at the tournaments at a simple cut off performance level.
Nevertheless, this is not a professional sport, if you dont compete in masters competitions the point is noted but should be ignored as far as I am concerned.
I think performance standards for international competitions would be appropriate, as it would make them smaller and thus easier to organise. The number of competitors per event from each country should probably also be limited, so you don’t end up with half the competitors being from the host country.
At the local or regional level, performance standards would not make much sense. At the national level, they could be appropriate in countries with a lot of competitors, which is probably not the case in Singapore.
An excellent commentary and thoughtful response.
I checked out the competitors in the 2018 world champs before my first post. A spot check on mens 100 and 200s shows heats, semis and final up to about M60. 3 rounds is not unreasonable. For 1500m it was heats through to final. Again ,ok for the athletes.
After this age the numbers diminish markedly.
What could be done to control overall numbers, ie the number of heats, is to abolish the M35 group. Set up a few years ago to equalise mens and womens age groups. And combine the age groups into say 10 year ranges at higher age groups. So what if a 70 year old gets his butt kicked by a 66 year old. He`s standing there thinking, so what, most blokes of my age are in a zimmer frame.
Seems a bit unfair to have a large proportion from the local country. But, nobody gets paid so its who can afford it. As long as they move the champs around the world it all evens out. And whats wrong competing at a place with sun and a nice beach anyway.
Sorry if this seems like a point by point rebutal. But athletics needs to be seen as a mass participation sport. It should not be measured or managed by professional standards.
No need to apologise. I have no issue with differing opinions. Considering the fact that many masters athletes compete in multiple events, three rounds can be quite tough. I train for sprints, long jump, triple jump and hurdles, but there is no way I could do multiple rounds of each at a national or international competition.
I also don’t think it would be wise to abolish the M35 age group, as this group allows a seamless transition from senior to masters athletics. If your performance at senior level starts to decline in your thirties, but you realise that you can still be competitive as a M35 athlete you’ll be less likely to retire from the sport altogether at this point. This was certainly the case for me. I had failed to reach my goal of a sub-11 100m as a senior (PB 11.01) and would have retired had I not found out that I can keep going and compete internationally in the M35 age group. I thus kept going and ended up with a couple of state records in the sprints and a fourth place in the long jump at worlds in the M35 age group.
I don’t think there is an issue with heats, semi and final as such… but rather heats that are only there because you have people who in realty are outside the top 60%
As a 400 runner for example, I had heats in Malaga where I ran 52 to go through, with runners then in each heat outside of the top 4 in the heat barely breaking a minute, the current ethos is all inclusive, sport for life. But to some degree this keeps the sport looking poor. Open entries and poor standard of 1st rounds does not sell the sport to the media (hence why we only ever got news about the older athletes still competing… but against zero competition).
I personally wouldn’t put a “time” standard (I would if possibly!) but maybe limit to the top 4 in your country up to a certain cut off in the year to allow time for entry etc.
This would then force a better competitive market in your home competitions to get in to that top 4 (same as would be for senior nationals to qualify for IAAF champs)
Limiting entry to top 4 in the country makes sense if you are going to have thresholds. Better than trying to administer time standards for entry.
I would still go for early stage qualifying rounds for non elite athletes.
The media will never buy masters athletics whatever we do. Outside the top 8 in the world, ie olympic/world finalists, hardly anyone has ever heard of any athletes at all. Let alone masters.
As for day to day economics of the sport : It
s an amateur sport at masters and club level, so what counts is where the funding comes from. And thats the majority within the sport who pay subscriptions and entry fees,who by definition are not winners. Alternative funding from public bodies is based on mass participation. I have applied for various grants for sports facilities and its all about mass participation, inclusiveness etc. Lets face it, who cares about whether a masters runners at your club does the 100m in 12.0 or 11.0. It`s all about the other 100 runners, do you have a junior section, a ladies team and so on. Thats what the public wants from their taxes.
By the way I agree with Robin about the 35 age group, I was too harsh on the youngsters.