British Para-Swimming prepare to host 'Race the World' virtual meet

5 Oct 2020

The open international is set to offer a competitive outlet for all classifications from their home training environment, following Covid-19’s disruption to the 2020 event schedule.

In a year that has seen competitive fixtures absent from the calendar, most notably the Tokyo Paralympics which were postponed until 2021, Race the World by British Para-Swimming is a new virtual meet which has been added to the calendar to provide an opportunity for both domestic and licensed international competitors to measure up against each other by submitting race video evidence captured in their own home pool environment.

Athletes will be able to enter a limited multi-classification programme for the heats competition window (11-13 November); including both the 50m and 100m distances across freestyle, breaststroke, backstroke and butterfly disciplines, with results to be ranked using a ‘virtual racing points system’ similar in nature to the British Disability Points System, but catering for all classifications in short course configuration.

Following race analysis and officiating checks, the top eight participants in each event will be invited to progress onwards to the finals (2-4 December), which will be post-produced and premiered as a live streaming event to reveal the inaugural champions.

BPSIM 2019
Athletes will race in their own home pool environment.

Speaking of the event Rob Aubry, Head Coach for British Para-Swimming, said:

“Given the complexities surrounding travel and the staging of events in a central venue at this point in time, we’re excited to be giving our swimmers the opportunity to hit out and have a race against similar athletes from across the world, as we progress through our plans leading up to the new dates for Tokyo 2020.

“By making it available to all classes there’s an open playing field for people to post times in events that they wouldn’t normally swim, and watch other athlete’s race against themselves in a format that should work for everyone.

“We of course are hopeful that in early 2021 we’ll all be in a position to compete face to face at the same venue as the World Para-Swimming Series resumes, but at this moment we’re making best use of the resources we have available to enable an innovative race experience.”

In order to simulate and test the new competition processes, a small scale domestic trial of the event will be taking place in October on an invite only basis. Full details of event entry conditions, guidelines for filming and submission for the open international heats will subsequently be announced the week commencing 19 October 2020.

Competition dates

  • Domestic trial event: 21-23 October (invite only)
  • International heats: 11-13 November (event entry opens w/c 19 October 2020)
  • International finals: 2-4 December

Make sure to revisit the British Swimming website and follow our social channels (@britishswimming) to stay up to date with the latest announcements.