Staggered Starts for XC Meets
07/22/2020 8:27:14 PM
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I've heard/read about using staggered starts to make our meets safer during the pandemic. I'm curious what that looks like. Anyone have experience with this or any concrete ideas of how this might be done? Do we start as a team? Does each school send one runner at a time so that all of the #1's, 2's, etc. are competing? Are meet directors going to have options, or will a certain style of staggered starts be mandated? I know there is a way to do traditional scoring once all the times are recorded, but that's about all I really know. It sure doesn't sound like cross country to me, but if this is what it takes to have an XC season and protect our athletes, I'm ready to listen. I truly hope that we are running more traditional style meets for the state series.
I've heard/read about using staggered starts to make our meets safer during the pandemic. I'm curious what that looks like. Anyone have experience with this or any concrete ideas of how this might be done? Do we start as a team? Does each school send one runner at a time so that all of the #1's, 2's, etc. are competing? Are meet directors going to have options, or will a certain style of staggered starts be mandated?

I know there is a way to do traditional scoring once all the times are recorded, but that's about all I really know. It sure doesn't sound like cross country to me, but if this is what it takes to have an XC season and protect our athletes, I'm ready to listen. I truly hope that we are running more traditional style meets for the state series.
07/22/2020 9:20:20 PM
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@coachboza Hey Mike, Like you I am no fan of staggered/wave starts, but would give anything for the kids to have a season. If we go to these staggered starts, I have thought of 3 possible ideas at Holloway, The first one I believe McKeel may have hosted out there around 2013 or 2014. I think Ray may have gone to that meet. Not all schools will have the luxury of a one loop course with a 300’ start line, so smaller meets would also be an idea, but I am just using Holloway because that is where we host our meets 1) this would be the most standard “wave” race. You have the #1’s from each team line up, gun goes off, they run. #2’s line up So many minutes later (2-5 minutes) and same thing happens, etc. You would definitely need a good timing company to accomplish this. 2) basically just a socially distanced start between teams with “x” number of teams at start line. Teams line up as normal in their boxes, skip “x” number of boxes before another team is assigned their Box. Gun goes off and then you do it again with a specified number of teams 3) 300’ start line divided by 6 feet gives me 50 kids at a start line in their own box. 7 kids from each team times 7 teams all running against each other in that wave, then seed teams 8-14 and do the same thing I sent an email a little bit ago to Mrs. Maynard on FHSAA SMAC Committee for safe practices for cross country meets. She will share them with their committee at their next meeting (I believe it is 8/3) Hopefully our state will be able to have a traditional state series come mid-October
@coachboza

Hey Mike,

Like you I am no fan of staggered/wave starts, but would give anything for the kids to have a season. If we go to these staggered starts, I have thought of 3 possible ideas at Holloway, The first one I believe McKeel may have hosted out there around 2013 or 2014. I think Ray may have gone to that meet. Not all schools will have the luxury of a one loop course with a 300' start line, so smaller meets would also be an idea, but I am just using Holloway because that is where we host our meets

1) this would be the most standard "wave" race. You have the #1's from each team line up, gun goes off, they run. #2's line up So many minutes later (2-5 minutes) and same thing happens, etc. You would definitely need a good timing company to accomplish this.

2) basically just a socially distanced start between teams with "x" number of teams at start line. Teams line up as normal in their boxes, skip "x" number of boxes before another team is assigned their Box. Gun goes off and then you do it again with a specified number of teams

3) 300' start line divided by 6 feet gives me 50 kids at a start line in their own box. 7 kids from each team times 7 teams all running against each other in that wave, then seed teams 8-14 and do the same thing

I sent an email a little bit ago to Mrs. Maynard on FHSAA SMAC Committee for safe practices for cross country meets. She will share them with their committee at their next meeting (I believe it is 8/3)

Hopefully our state will be able to have a traditional state series come mid-October
07/23/2020 4:25:33 AM
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This season, we are all gonna just have to muddle though things as best we can. In South Florida (if any competitions and congregations will be allowed at all), the best way to have a competition might be the old 1960s style dual meets. Groups would be kept small . Invitationals (even with staggered starts) would still mean large congregations of people, crowded restrooms ,busses etc. Required social distancing for an invite would still be very difficult . Maybe South Florida is different from the rest of Florida, but it’s hard to see parks or schools (down here) saying it’ll be ok for groups of several hundred to assemble ( even with a wave start). If even dual meets not a possibility, another possibility is to run meets postal style somehow. Of course different courses will yield different results and create huge inequities The reality is that this season (at least in South Florida) will not be a xc season as we know it, and it certainly won’t be uniform when comparing what might be allowed in other parts of the state. But any way we can keep the ball rolling so to speak . Maybe with dual or postal meets we can keep things moving til conditions allow for more.
This season, we are all gonna just have to muddle though things as best we can.

In South Florida (if any competitions and congregations will be allowed at all), the best way to have a competition might be the old 1960s style dual meets. Groups would be kept small . Invitationals (even with staggered starts) would still mean large congregations of people, crowded restrooms ,busses etc. Required social distancing for an invite would still be very difficult . Maybe South Florida is different from the rest of Florida, but it's hard to see parks or schools (down here) saying it'll be ok for groups of several hundred to assemble ( even with a wave start).

If even dual meets not a possibility, another possibility is to run meets postal style somehow. Of course different courses will yield different results and create huge inequities

The reality is that this season (at least in South Florida) will not be a xc season as we know it, and it certainly won't be uniform when comparing what might be allowed in other parts of the state. But any way we can keep the ball rolling so to speak .

Maybe with dual or postal meets we can keep things moving til conditions allow for more.
07/23/2020 5:43:40 AM
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@mbecker This is what I plan to do at my preseason jamboree...space out the team boxes a bit more first of all. For the wave start I am going to allow teams top 5 to run in wave 1 ( with the caveat that everyone is sub 20 for boys and 25 for girls) this way your potential 5 scorers cam race one another All runners remaining runners will go 2 or 3 minutes behind them in a second wave. This will work well for my course as only the 1st 1k is repeated to start and finish. Plan to have spectators temperature checked at the gate and masks will be required at all times by all spectators and staff / volunteers. Coaches and athletes will not have to wear them, but coaches must fill out the standard 6 question form plus temperature check prior to leaving their school and provide that to me. Doing the best I can and think is right. Those are the big basics plenty more common sense stuff but it will be posted on my Dunbar Jamboree race by end of day.
@mbecker
This is what I plan to do at my preseason jamboree...space out the team boxes a bit more first of all.
For the wave start I am going to allow teams top 5 to run in wave 1 ( with the caveat that everyone is sub 20 for boys and 25 for girls) this way your potential 5 scorers cam race one another
All runners remaining runners will go 2 or 3 minutes behind them in a second wave. This will work well for my course as only the 1st 1k is repeated to start and finish.
Plan to have spectators temperature checked at the gate and masks will be required at all times by all spectators and staff / volunteers. Coaches and athletes will not have to wear them, but coaches must fill out the standard 6 question form plus temperature check prior to leaving their school and provide that to me. Doing the best I can and think is right.
Those are the big basics plenty more common sense stuff but it will be posted on my Dunbar Jamboree race by end of day.
07/23/2020 7:19:25 AM
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As I sat sipping my coffee this morning, I came up with a great idea for wave starts. We could send one wave of kids, let's say everyone's top 7 only. Then 45 minutes later, send another wave of everyone's remaining kids. We could even split the girls and boys separately into different waves to help reduce the numbers. Limit the number of teams in a race to 20 max. We could use catchy names for these waves like Varsity, JV, Varsity B, Invite, ROC, Green, Blue, Yellow, Jason Byrne Special Invite, Small Schools, Large Schools, etc.... Wave assignments could be written on the packets and/or posted online before the meet.
As I sat sipping my coffee this morning, I came up with a great idea for wave starts. We could send one wave of kids, let's say everyone's top 7 only. Then 45 minutes later, send another wave of everyone's remaining kids. We could even split the girls and boys separately into different waves to help reduce the numbers. Limit the number of teams in a race to 20 max. We could use catchy names for these waves like Varsity, JV, Varsity B, Invite, ROC, Green, Blue, Yellow, Jason Byrne Special Invite, Small Schools, Large Schools, etc.... Wave assignments could be written on the packets and/or posted online before the meet.
07/23/2020 8:26:27 AM
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@lfcsumner3 this seems like a great plan, hopefully everyone can get on board with this idea. Well thought out and perfectly executed!
@lfcsumner3 this seems like a great plan, hopefully everyone can get on board with this idea.

Well thought out and perfectly executed!
07/23/2020 10:10:18 AM
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@lfcsumner3 fantastic, well thought out plan! That's one magic cup of coffee you are drinking. Perhaps you could propose these innovative ideas to the board prior to tonight's meeting so that they could debate them for 5 hours or so?
@lfcsumner3 fantastic, well thought out plan! That's one magic cup of coffee you are drinking. Perhaps you could propose these innovative ideas to the board prior to tonight's meeting so that they could debate them for 5 hours or so?
07/23/2020 10:20:33 AM
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@lfcsumner3 Brilliant!
@lfcsumner3
Brilliant!
07/23/2020 4:36:58 PM
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@lfcsumner3 Where is the like button?
@lfcsumner3
Where is the like button?
07/25/2020 2:42:07 PM
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@lfcsumner3 Lol... Sumner... great idea!! Let's assign every team a six foot wide starting box too #distancing. Oh.. but I think I'm owed royalties every time you use that name. And you gotta add a ™ after it. lol
@lfcsumner3 Lol... Sumner... great idea!! Let's assign every team a six foot wide starting box too #distancing. Oh.. but I think I'm owed royalties every time you use that name. And you gotta add a ™ after it. lol

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