Timing a multi-heat regatta (boat) race

The following was a reply we sent to someone planning to time a multi-heat regatta:

If I understand correctly, the overall race is result of several four-team heats. If that’s correct, you could use RaceSplitter’s “variable-start” race type, in which you time *both* a participant (boat’s) start and finish. (Normally, with RaceSplitter, you only time the finish.)
In this way, it doesn’t matter when a boat starts, since it will be timed twice (start and finish), and the RaceSplitter.com website will computer the result by subtracting the start time from the finish time.
Couple of notes:


Using the timing bar to start multiple boats at the same time — Since four boats will be starting together, you will time their start at the same time by entering each’s bib number (identifying number) on the RaceSplitter “timing bar”, and tapping “Record” to assign the same time to each.

Use the website to view the final times — The app itself doesn’t know it’s a “variable-start” race. To the app, it will appear as a mass-start race, timed with two devices. Only when each device publishes results to the website can you, the race owner, log into the website and toggle the results to be “variable-start”, at which point the website will do its thing, and display the results correctly.

Letting the public monitor the results — People watching the race can either follow the results online as you publish (and re-publish) them throughout the event. You’d need to announce the race link (URL) to everyone in advance. (The results are available at the same URL where the race is created.) Some race organizers broadcast the results web page onto a big screen. So that’s an option too.

Practice, practice, practice — The above might sound a little complicated, but it’s simple when you’ve practiced a few times with test races. It’s critically important you do that. You don’t want to wait to race day to try to figure all that out!

Please don’t hesitate to follow up with any other questions or comments. We’re here to help!

Scenarios & examples


This article explains how to use RaceSplitter to time a triathlon.

Timing 5k and 10k races together

This article discusses the considerations involved in a common timing scenario—5k and 10k running races, ran together in a single event.

Variable start races

This article explains how to time races in which the start interval between participants or waves is variable.

Complex Multi-Race Event

This blog article explains how we organized the timing of a multi-day, multi-race and multi-split ultra event using RaceSplitter.

How to time ties & groups

This blog article explains how we organized the timing of a multi-day, multi-race and multi-split ultra event using RaceSplitter.

Complex Wave Starts

This article explains how we helped a customer setup timing for a complex wave-start event.

Relay Races & Team Events

This article discusses considerations related to timing relay races and team events.

Multi-heat regatta

This article discusses timing of a multi-heat boat regatta.

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