- Have you ever thought about becoming an athletics official?
- Have you ever wondered how events at Newtown Park or Centre Cross Country events are run?
- Have you ever competed at the Athletics New Zealand Classic series of events or the Track and Field National Championships and are thinking of giving back to the sport?
- Or do you record the times at club events, do you set up the entry system, do you hand out the placing tags, or record laps during a race or names at the end of a race? Do you go out early and help set up a course, or stay behind and help pack up? If so, then you are already volunteering, and it may be time to take your volunteering to the next level and become a graded official.
Both harriers (cross country and road racing) and track and field (for older juniors/seniors/masters and for Children’s Athletics) require people to help administer and organise events. This is where club members can help by becoming graded Athletics New Zealand Officials. As an official you get to be on the inside of the track, officiating at international athletics events, Nationals, Centre events and events like Colgate Games and permit meets, as well as Cross-Country and Road events. Be there when the records are set!
Officiating is broken down into several areas:
- Group 1: Jumps (Long/Triple Jumps, High Jump, Pole Vault)
- Group 2: Throws (Shot Put, Discus, Hammer, Javelin)
- Group 3: Track (Judging, Wind Gauge, Lap Scoring, Umpiring, Starting, Time Keeping, Photo Finish)
- Group 4: Walks (Walk Judging, Chief Judge (A & B), Recording, Posting Board, Pit Lane (A), General Track Officiating)
- Group 5: Outside Events (Course Setting, Starting/Umpiring, Time Keeping, Judging/Lap scoring/Recording)
- Group 6: Administration (Competition Management/Announcing, Recording, Seeding and Draws, Technical)
- Group 7: Course Measurement (Course setting and measuring for events outside the stadium up to and including Marathon distance)
- Group 8: PARA (All events)
Within each group, officials are graded (A, B or C grades).
So, how do you get involved and what training is available? Training is held countrywide across NZ. Contact the Wellington officials contact Vaughan Oates, or the national Officials Development Manager Trevor Spittle.
If you wish to find out more you can also contact club member David Sim (who is also the chair of Athletics Auckland).