The Global Swim Series season runs from May 1st to April 30th the following year
1) One of the key guiding principle is that each race or event is independent and will be in charge of their own specific rules for their own race(s). Our goal isn’t to standardize races, rules or distances and have races lose their local flavor, that is what makes each race different, interesting and exciting. However, we do have some overriding standards that are common among all the races and are used to derive the points, ranking system and season’s Global Champions.
2) Divisions: The Global Swim Series recognizes champions in the following 4 divisions:
Men’s Non-Wetsuit (also known as “Naked” or “Skins” in some races)
Women’s Non-Wetsuit (also known as “Naked” or “Skins”in some races)
*GSS defines “Non-Wetsuit”, “Naked” or “Skins” as legal "FINA-style", open water textile swimsuits.
Races must offer results in these divisions if they allow swimmers to swim both with and without a wetsuit. Due to local race conditions some races may be wetsuit mandatory or have wetsuits not allowed. (see "Scoring", rule #3 with regards to scoring issues).
3) All races must track swimmers ages as of the next April 30 (the end of the GSS season), so that a swimmer remains in the same age group throughout the season.
4) Global Rankings will be calculated by 10 year age groups and within each Category. The following are the official GSS age groups:
- 19 & Under
- 80 & Over
5) Winners – as well as having individual age group recognition for each of the 4 categories (Male Wetsuit, Female Wetsuit, Male Non-Wetsuit, Female Non-Wetsuit), there will be 3 types of major champions:
- The 4 winners of the Global Swim Series. (based on the Global Ranking, as described below. These swimmers are the “GSS Global Champions” and have their name on the trophy.)
- The winners of each GSS Regional Championship Race for each distance. (based solely on time at the race)
- The winners of the GSS Global Championship Race for each distance. (based solely on the time at the race)
1) Swimmers automatically earn "GSS points" by completing any GSS member race. The GSS points are then totalled for each race completed to give each swimmer a "Global Ranking".
The points are based equally on participation and speed. All swimmers that complete the race can earn up to 100 points (slight modifications for "Distance Points" and "Relay Points", see below). All swimmers that finish the race get 50 participation points. The second 50 points are earned based on the swimmers finishing place (calculated from their percentile ranking).
2) Points in the series are added up throughout the season with all the GSS races you do around the globe counting towards your total score.
3) You can NOT combine the points from different races if you swam one race in a “Wetsuit” and another “Non-Wetsuit”. You would simply have 2 separate rankings, one in “Wetsuit” and one in “Non-Wetsuit”.
NOTE: the exception to this rule is that if the race OFFICIALLY does not offer your category (ie the race is "wetsuit only" or "non-wetsuit only") then you can swim in whichever category is offered and still have the points count toward your Global Ranking. For example: if it is a cold swim and all swimmers are required to wear wetsuits then a non-wetsuit swimmer could still swim and have points counted. The opposite is true too, if the water is too warm and wetsuits are not allowed, then a wetsuit swimmer may swim non-wetsuit and still have the points count towards their ranking. We don't want to deter swimmers from swimming!
4) If a swimmer was able to swim in more than one race at the same event (at one day or multi-day events), only one race would be included in the GSS rankings. For example, if an event offered a 1km, a 3km and 5km race on the same day, or over several days, and a swimmer competed in more than one of those distances, only one of those scores would count towards their Global Ranking. We automatically select the race in which the swimmer achieved the most points, and add those to the swimmers Global Ranking.
5) Some races do not count towards the Series (ie. Kid’s Splash and Dash, swimmers using fins, snorkels and other aids, etc. Ask the local Race Director if unsure). Typically races less than 1 km are not eligible to collect points.
6) Swimmers who DNF (did not finish) do not get any points in the Series.
7) Each race sends GSS their results, which we then formulate into GSS points and post on our website. If there is an issue with the points or placing of your swim, please contact the specific race director and discuss the issue, before contacting GSS. The race director will then need to resubmit the corrected results to GSS. Except in exceptional circumstances, all results are final after 1 month, as it is not fair to other swimmers to change results if they aren’t discovered within that time frame. Only if there are specific GSS ranking related issues should you contact GSS.
8) The GSS wants to grow and add races to the series, therefore races can be added during the season. This may effect some swimmers race schedule and plans, therefore all races must be officially registered on the website at least 1 month prior to the race.
9) If a race page has a date that is not current (shows a previous years date), then it has not renewed its membership with the GSS. Therefore points from a current edition of that race would not count for the current years Global Ranking. We reserve the right to leave a page up that has not yet renewed as a courtesy to the race.
Designed to reward those of our swimmers who accomplish one of the several marathon swims on the GSS schedule.
The way it works is simple, for a GSS race that is over 10km long, each swimmer will gain 10 bonus "distance points" for each kilometer over 10km. So for any swim 10km and under you get 0 distance points, but for a 20km swim you would earn an extra 100 points (20-10=10km x10points = 100points).
So for example say you compete in the 3.8km LOST Race and win, you could get something like: 50 participation points + 49.5 percentile points = 99.5 points. If you were to complete the 25km Rottnest Port to Pub swim and win you might get something like: 50 participation points + 48 percentile points + 150 distance points = 248 points.
This rule change is designed to reward swimmers who compete in the ultra-long GSS races. Many of these races have a much smaller field and therefore someone coming 5th completing a 20km swim might get the same amount of points as someone coming 200th in a 1km swim. We designed this change to even the playing field a little for our long distance swimmers. While 250 points (for a 25km) might seem like a lot for a single race keep in mind that the swimmer is still only getting 150 points more than a swimmer doing a 1km swim despite swimming 25x the distance.
Distance bonus points are rounded to the nearest km.
New starting for the 2018/19 Season: Relays will be eligible for GSS points that go towards your Global Ranking!
Previously only individual events were counted, but now all relay events will also accumulate GSS points, with the points divided equally among the swimmers. So for example: a 2-person, 8km relay, scoring 88 points would earn each swimmer 44 points. Relays are also eligible for distance bonus points, for example: a 4-person, 25km relay, scoring 240 points (including distance points) will earn each swimmer 60 points.
It is important to remember that GSS sets the rules for scoring results across the member races but the individual rules with regards to event safety, organization, timing, placing, etc. can often vary widely from race to race and are the responsibility of the individual race.
Please review the rules of the specific GSS race you are competing in or consult the race director should you have any questions. GSS has no legal relationship or ownership holding in most GSS member races. Each race is independently owned and operated. Each race signs a waiver of liability with the GSS and each race is solely and legally responsible for their own race.